A Dose of Reality: American Idol 6: Week 11 - Bon Jovi Theme
by Doug DeBolt
Published: May 2, 2007
There are a lot of themes that give rise to excitement and
anticipation among viewers. Unfortunately, this wasn't one of them.
Going into Bon Jovi Week, I
had a sense of dread, as there are no true rockers (i.e. Chris
Daughtry) or even blues-rockers (i.e. Taylor Hicks) left in Season Six. The closest thing we have is Blake Lewis, whose greatest strength is less
in his rock and more in his originality. So the greatest thing I was
anticipating this week was Jon Bon Jovi himself -- he of the
everlasting career. I was like so many others in the 1980s who had at least one copy of Slippery When Wet. I have loved his
music, which is why I wasn't looking forward to the Season Six
renditions of it. Thankfully, I was in for a big surprise...
"Blaze of Glory"
Phil's Uncle Fester-meets-Nosferatu look notwithstanding, he has experienced a
renaissance in this competition in the past few weeks. Using his
country success as a springboard, Phil is peaking at the right time,
though that will almost certainly not be enough to put him in the
winner's circle. This week, he started the show in classic fashion,
bringing a true rock spirit to the Idol stage. One concern is that the
lyrics could be prophetic: "I'm
goin' down in a blaze of glory..." Generally, it's a good idea
to avoid such lyrical predictions. Still, if this is Phil's last week,
he will have gone out in style.|
"Livin' on a Prayer"
It was bound
to happen. Jordin finally came up way short in every area, starting
with her hair. There's a big reason that 80s style went out and hasn't
come back. Add to that, she gave Jon Bon Jovi one of the biggest,
backhanded compliments of all time: "My mom loves your music!" Yeah,
that was the thrill of his day. To top it off, Jordin's vocals on "Livin' on a Prayer" were, by far,
the low point of her season. Jordin's strength comes from the high-end
of her range, and this song requires strength at both ends. It simply
wasn't there for Jordin. She's probably safe, but this was, by far,
this week's worst performance.|
"This Ain't a Love Song"
Just as Phil's fortunes have risen quickly,
LaKisha's haven fallen almost as fast. Maybe it's due in part to the
outfits she's been wearing, including this week's "black widow" get-up.
Nothing says "diva" more than a deadly spider... After I got over her
scary appearance, I actually liked what LaKisha did with her vocals.
She brought a lot of passion and soul to the stage and made me enjoy a
song that I wasn't familiar with. She still seems much too angry when
she sings, but she brought her best when she needed it most. Even so, I
think she's in line for elimination Wednesday night.|
"You Give Love a Bad Name"
Each season, we're treated to a performance that
makes us remember what American Idol is all about. Ruben's "Superstar." Kelly Clarkson's "Stuff Like That There." Bo Bice's
"In a Dream."
That's how unique Blake was on "You
Give Love a Bad Name." On a night that needed someone to step in
front of the Doolittle freight train, Blake was willing to step onto
the tracks. His fans (myself included) have missed the beat-boxer that
captured our imaginations in the early weeks of the show, so it was
great to see that guy reappear. I'm not sure how much I loved
everything he did with the song (or his hair) but I completely loved
his spunk in trying something so original and daring. For that alone,
he deserves a spot in the final four.|
"Wanted Dead or Alive"
probably a good kid, but he's lacking some things. Like a personality.
And a vocabulary. There's so little about Chris that people have seen
that they can care about (save for pretty eyes and a decent vocal
range). Every contestant who ever won this show had a great backstory.
Chris is the missing link in this show. We simply don't know enough
about him to care whether he moves forward or not. And that leaves his
fortunes solely on this week's performance. That's not such a good
thing. I didn't pick up on the soul that the judges saw. Mostly, this
was a straight rock rendition, and that's way out of Chris'
wheelhouse. Yes, Chris did his best with his song choice (one that will
draw both fair and unfair comparisons with Chris Daughtry). But his
best simply wasn't good enough tonight, and he stands a very good
chance of going home.|
"Have a Nice Day"
says she can't rock. Yeah. Tell me another one, Melinda. This was
soulful rock at its finest. Even before the judges chimed in, I was
thinking, "Tina Turner would be proud!" Honestly, can't you see Melinda
and Tina rocking out together during the American Idol results finale?
She was already the most mature and seasoned performer coming into this
season, but Melinda has still shown a great amount of growth as a
performer. People have said that she wouldn't sell many CDs or be worth
seeing in concert, but tonight's performance should put those notions
to rest. It might not have been Melinda's best, but it's pretty hard to
determine which ones were not her best, since she hasn't had any duds.
Melinda is beyond safe -- she should now be the odds-on favorite to win
Week 1: Men's Night | Women's Night | Results
Week 2: Men's Night | Women's Night | Results
Week 3: Men's Night | Women's Night | Results
Week 4: Diana Ross Theme | Results
Week 5: British Invasion Theme | Results
Week 6: Pop Theme | Results
Week 7: Oldies Theme - Andrea's Recap | Oldies Theme - Paul's Recap | Results
Week 8: Latin Theme - Andrea's Recap | Latin Theme - Paul's Recap | Results
Week 9: Country Theme - Andrea's Recap | Results
Week 10: Idol Gives Back Theme - Andrea's Recap | Results