Last night was Beatles night on American Idol – also known as two hours of mostly forgettable performances. (Is it just us or has this whole season been pretty snooze-worthy so far?) As quickly as the top nine sang their songs, it was like none of it ever happened.
The judges were constantly working overtime to try to spice things up, climbing over each other to come up with the best sound bite of the night. Mariah Carey, who looked like she baked a little too long in the tanning bed, cracked herself up a few times, but her awkwardly melodramatic quips were met with crickets outside of her head.
As usual, she was upstaged by onscreen rival Nicki Minaj, who got bleeped not once but twice over the course of the show – presumably for name-dropping certain body parts starting with the letter "p." (One was seemingly "pianist" purposefully mispronounced just to mess with the button-pushers.)
Also upstaging the actual performances was the fact that many of the contestants had never even heard the songs they were singing before. In some cases, they didn't even seem to know who the Beatles were! Is this really what the world has come to, people?
That said, amid a night of mostly forgettable moments, two singers stood out – for very different reasons.
Candice Glover won the night once again, solidifying herself as a frontrunner with a funky, gritty groove and powerhouse vocals on "Come Together." Though she admitted to mentor Jimmy Iovine during rehearsal that she didn't understand the lyrics, she certainly didn't let that stop her onstage, belting out notes that made Randy Jackson's eyes pop. At the end, he said he was glad she didn't always gravitate toward ballads to show off her range – and so are we, considering it was one of the few upbeat tracks of the night. (To be fair, Kree Harrison, Angie Miller and Janelle Arthur also gave good performances. They just weren't memorable.)
On the flipside, Lazaro Arbos floundered once again. Sorry, but can America just pull the plug and put this guy out of his misery already? He looks so pained and uncomfortable under the spotlight, and he just doesn't have the vocal chops to cut it. He clearly doesn't have what it takes to win, so please shut him down sooner rather than later. Think of it as a mercy killing at the beginning of the zombie apocalypse.
Lazaro sang a sweaty, shaky, off-key rendition of "In My Life" that just didn't work. Afterward, Mariah rambled on about his "bravery" and ability to "make it through the song" – presumably referring to the fact that he has a debilitating stutter when he's not singing. The rest of the judges weren't so nice. Nicki screeched about how he's lost his confidence, while Randy just bluntly said this was his "worst performance ever." In response, Lazaro revealed that the show's producers switched his song at the 11th hour. He then started to cry, uncomfortably refusing to look at the camera for the rest of the segment, which later cause Nicki to roll her eyes and say he needed to let their comments "roll off his back" if he was going to survive the competition. If he happens to squeak by once again, it'll be because America felt sorry for him. Plain and simple.
Previously: Curtis Finch Jr. Gets Bounced