A Dose of Reality: American Idol 2 - Wild Card Round
by The Trades Staff
Published: March 5, 2003
Mary writes: Well, that was disappointing. I liked "Come To My Window," the
song she sang 4 weeks ago, a lot more than the song she sang last night. Her
performance was not good. Whew. If she makes it past this round, she won't make it to
the final 3 or 4 at the rate she's going. I noticed that tonight's 9 had an advantage the top
32 didn't have. They had a full accompaniment on tape while they sang, including
backup singers! Unbelievable. If some of the people this evening sang with only a
piano, we all would have been horrified.
Amanda writes: I think Kimberly will advance. I’ve always thought she was a
sort of teachers’ pet to the judges, but the way she was almost berated tonight makes me
doubt that they’re retaining their faith in her early performances. I think America, though,
will place the pretty, blonde Kimberly at the top of its list to advance as a wild card. Her
performance tonight I thought was terribly average – There’s something weird about her
attitude that rubs me the wrong way, too; I think she may have too much confidence,
which clearly, according to the judges, she should not.
Molly writes: I liked her better last week as well. But I thought it was
a passable job. For those
who want her to advance (Simon, adolescent boys), I think it'll be enough to get her
Mary writes: Well, that's more like it! Clay was excellent and he
absolutely needs to be in the top 12. I was just really impressed with his performance.
Also, his look improved. His hair is a lot better and I just have my fingers crossed for
him. I think he will do well in this competition now that he has confidence and settled in
Amanda writes: Clay was great tonight, and I think he will get through
to the top 12 as a judges’ pick, but I still kind of doubt his ability to sing pop – and isn’t
that what this show is about?
Molly writes: Yay, Clay! He sounded very strong, very confident.
And while I would have
preferred the piano-only background, I thought that Clay carried off the cheesy
muzak and vocals better than a lot of the competitors. He wasn't overpowered at all,
and you never lost track of who was lead vocals.
Mary writes: This was not a good performance and it is a shame she
followed Clay who had a lot more passion and vigor. Nasheka started off kind of bad and
I question her judgment in singing a Bette Midler song. She sang it too slowly, in my
opinion and I thought she was just okay. She really lacks energy.
Amanda writes: Not only was I pretty well stunned at how bad
Nasheka was, I also think that she should punished for getting “Wings Beneath My
Wings” stuck in my head. I was kind of amused that she told the judges that she was
“working on” smiling and eye contact.
Molly writes: That was my complaint about her last time -- her lack of
energy. I think that's
just too big of a disadvantage to overcome in the American Idol competition. It's
going to be hard to get people to call in and keep calling in if they don't feel like
they're getting any enthusiasm or appreciation back.
Mary writes: In her little interview before her performance, she said
she was going to sing a country song because it worked for her before. First, it didn't
really "work" for her before because she did not make it to the final 32. Second, did she
sing a country song? That's the weirdest country song I've ever heard. Sounded very pop
to me. And not Dolly Parton pop either.
Amanda writes: I think that Carmen could do well as a singer with
some training, but this performance was just not up to snuff. It was not by far the worst
we saw tonight, but she won’t be in the top four. I wonder if we’ll see her in next year’s
Molly writes: Heck, I would have believed it as a Whitney song -- it
had the same "I Want to Dance
with Someone" vibe. I guess as a Leann Rimes' song "Can't Fight the Moonlight"
could qualify as a country song, but since it was written by Diane Warren, I think it
really belongs in the "pop" category. At least.
Adequate performance. She sounded a little flat sometimes -- maybe nerves got the
better of her? -- but at least it felt like she was making an effort to sing.
Mary writes: Okay, she's the 2nd of the individuals who made it to
California, but did not make it to the final 32. She sang a Celine Dion song. She was
fair, but not great. I'm actually wondering now if these others from outside the 32 were
pulled in to guarantee that the judges picks fromthe 32 would definitely advance.
I mean these people were not good.
Amanda writes: Her voice was not strong enough for this song. I
couldn’t get a handle on what her voice would be like in a different song, but this was
definitely bad song choice.
Definitely not good. When I spoke above about Clay not being overpowered by the
background vocals, I was thinking of Olivia as the contrasting situation. There were
times when I couldn't tell who was singing -- her or the backup track. It was a very
flat, lifeless performance, and it kills me that someone like her was in there and not
Mary writes: Okay, this may be embarrassing and I may live to regret
this admission, but I love Pat Benatar. This young woman ruined the song. I won't
forgive her for that. It is with bitterness that I had to listen to her performance. I believe
her voice was too high to really pull off that song. Again, I'm becoming convinced that
the judges picks are shoe-ins for the top 12.
Amanda writes: I didn’t mind Janine’s performance as much as Randy
did. I hated the arrangement of the song and thought that maybe it was too well known to
introduce such a different voice singing it, but it didn’t absolutely suck. I wouldn’t cry iff
she advanced, but I don’t think she will.
So after Olivia, when Janine came out with her New York attitude, I figured this would
be a high energy performance. Surely she heard how terribly it went for Olivia when
she didn't sing out. But no. Janine actually matched Olivia for lifelessness.
Janine's a pretty girl when she's not flashing those scary teeth, and that might get her
through, but this was NOT a good exhibition of her vocal abilities.
Mary writes: He had a lot more energy than his performance last week.
I liked his performance, but I wasn't wowed by it. I really like Michael Jackson's "Off
The Wall" album (and who knew it would be a prophetic title for MJ's behavior for the
last 15 years) and "Rock With You" was really good song choice. I disagree with Simon
that it was terrible. It is possible that Simon is right and he could have done better and is
capable of better, but in comparison to everyone except Clay so far this evening, Chip did
a good job.
Amanda writes: I’m not a fan of Chip’s style and attitude. His
performance was okay and I think he’ll advance, and his voice is certainly fine. I’m just
not blown away.
Vocally I liked Chip's performance better last week, but I thought he did a good job
this week as well. He's one of those that with his aggregate performance, I think he
should move on. At the very least, he's shown himself capable of a consistent level
of performance over multiple auditions, and while that may not be American Idol
quality at this point, it's more than a lot of the candidates have offered.
Mary writes: Oh she was good. I was losing hope for another decent
performance. I'm really glad they added her because her voice was really nice and she
was definitely the second best of the night. I think she's got a good quality voice. She
needs to advance but I do wonder if Paula is right that she needs to show more variety in
her song choices.
Amanda writes: Aliceyn was pretty good. I get kind of concerned,
though, when performers bank on one song like this. Is she capable of singing other
things? I don’t know that she’ll advance against the other talent, but she would be a good
pick to do so.
Heh -- it's hard to blame her for going back to "Angel". When she sang it, she was
advanced to Hollywood, and when she didn't, she was cut before.
Mary writes: Okay, I love Al Green too (are you getting the picture my
musical tastes are pretty eclectic, I thought so). I think Trenyce did a decent job with the
song. A lot of energy and while her beginning wasn't great, she really got deep into the
song and ended well. I think she should advance. I wasn't as excited about her as
Randy and Paula were, but I think she did a good job.
Amanda writes: Trenyce was great tonight. I think the song choice was
excellent for her, and I’m almost certain the judges will pick her to advance as they
I thought she did a good job, too, although I actually liked her better
at the beginning of the song. She's got a really nice tone to her voice, and
I'd be interested in hearing her do something slower and more ballad-y. With this
performance as with the last, I felt like she was doing too much shouting instead of
It was interesting hearing this song and Clay's "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me."
Those are both songs I associate with Justin last season -- "Let's Stay Together" was
the first good song for him after some so-so performances, and "Don't Let the Sun"
was the song that the judges picked for him to sing one week. Was this coincidence,
a conscious choice, or just (more) evidence of the limited number of songs these
contestants have to choose from.
Who should advance? Clay, Aliceyn, Chip, Trenyce based only on quality. But I think
the end result may be that Kimberly is in the mix instead of Chip.
Amanda writes: I think that to even the field between men and women,
the judges will pick Clay and two women – my guess is that they’ll choose Aliceyn and
Trenyce (maybe Kimberly instead of Aliceyn). America will pull Kimberly through if the
judges don’t. My wild card pick for this round is Janine, who stands a shot at being
pulled through by America if the judges pick Kimberly. I do not think that viewers will
pull Aliceyn through if the judges do not.
I pretty much agree with Mary, although I'm more iffy on Aliceyn. Based on tonight's
performance, Aliceyn has the edge; based on everything we've seen, Kimberly has
American Idol roundtables at The Trades: 1st
Quarterfinal | 2nd
Quarterfinal | 3rd
Quarterfinal | 4th
Quarterfinal | Wild Card Quarterfinal | First
Elimination | Second
Elimination Round | Third Elimination Round | Fourth Elimination
American Idol on the net: American
Idol's Official site | Sirlinksalot.net