Could this be a first? An American Idol top 4 that actually contains four really talented people?!? It's a Christmas miracle! I think these four are definitely the best of the season, and I'm glad this year has made AI actually worth watching toward the end. I'm going to give a little rundown of the final four (L-R from the artfully Photoshopped photo above), and then tell you how I wish the elimination order would go, and then I think it actually will.
- Danny: I think he's pretty talented (though I cringed and grimaced through his Rock week selection), but I think he's not quite the best one up there. Gotta love my boy from Milwaukee, and I'm glad he's made it this far. He had a heartbreaking story from the very beginning, so I'm pretty sure a lot of people are just voting him through each week due to the sympathy factor, plus I guess he has a pretty strong Christian music fans following. I didn't like him at first, but he's grown on me, but while I think he'll be in the finale, I don't think he'll win. I do believe he's the only finalist that has never appeared in the weekly bottom three.
- Adam: I liked his audition a lot. I thought he was original and genuine. Every week I see him I like him less. I certainly can't deny that he really is quite talented (though to be honest, I think he has an unfair advantage having had a lot of stage/performance experience), but his whole look and gimmick is really starting to grate on me actually. His style is SO whack, his hair is awful (except when he actually combs it) and his make-up is really distracting (I hardly ever even see girls with that much eye make-up, for heaven's sake). I have concluded that he has exactly two styles: Ultra-sensitive, subdued, rife with falsetto ballad, and over-the-top, extreme, tongue-wagging screaming. This has made him extremely predictable (Whaaaa? You're going to put a ROCK EDGE on a country song?!? You just blow me away, Adam!). The judges raving about him and putting him on a somewhat unwarranted pedastal is getting a little old, and besides, there are online reports going around about him that lead me to believe he is not what he appears to be, and that he is a very poor role model for the young demographic at which this show is largely aimed. I used to like him a lot. Now I'm so over him. Plus, he has a huge head.
- Allison: I think she's quite talented, and definitely the best girl there was in the top 10, so I'm glad she's still around. Having said that, I think she's Kelly 2.0 (though younger and not as good) and that she doesn't have quite what it takes for the win. She's cute and quirky, so I like to see her, even though hers isn't my favorite style of music. I'm afraid if she doesn't win, her poor mom is just going to collapse into a heap of tears, but it's going to happen. The girl won't win, but she's done fine for herself so far. Go back to high school, Allison.
- Kris: I think he's the best for several reasons. First, he's likeable. He has a real sort of approachable, friendly sensibility that seems totally unassuming and genuine. Second, he's totally talented. He has a sort of unique-to-the-show Mrazian vibe about him, he's killer on the guitar, and he's an artist (and yes, I kind of like how he sticks out his jaw when he sings, it's a little bit endearing somehow). Third, he's an excellent role model. Family man, church-going, and there aren't discomfitting, creepy photos of him doing unseemly things floating about the internet. Unlike some of the other finalists, he's not a tabloid cover story waiting to happen. Finally, he seems totally unaware of just how talented he is. He responds respectfully and humbly to whatever the judges say and whatever the vote is (unlike some people whose responses to the gushing judges seem totally fake, you know, those whose mouth says, "Thank you," but whose eyes say, "Of course they love me, I was awesome!" You know who I mean. Blah). To wit, he's the man.
4th: Adam Lambert
3rd: Allison Iraheta
2nd: Danny Gokey
1st: Kris Allen
4th: Kris Allen
3rd: Allison Iraheta
2nd: Adam Lambert
1st: Danny Gokey
I am back and forth with the final two in my prediction... I just have this weird feeling that Adam won't win after all, even though the show is totally fabricating a winner out of him and all obvious signs point to him taking home the title. I guess I'm going to stand by it and chance the consequences! We'll see if either of those come to pass. In a world of total American Idol justice, someone like Kris would win and help restore hope in humanity, but alas, I'm afraid that the world isn't quite to that point yet. We're all about the flash and the glam, regardless of the overall package. There's a lot to be said for the occasional display of subtlety.
I was actually quite pleased with last season's finale, even though neither of the top two were my favorites. I wasn't really into that season anyway. Now that I am, let's see if I leave it disappointed. Curse this show and its addictive properties!