Before we talk about tonight’s results, I want look back at the past eleven “top 3′s.” Let’s see how this season’s top 3 stacks up with the others.
Season 1: This probably would have been a solid top 3 if Tamyra had made it. Nikki was a cute underdog but she was clearly out of her league against the other 2.
Season 2: This top 3 was absolutely perfect with Ruben, Kimberly and Clay. In fact…I really loved Josh Gracin during that season so I even thought the top 4 was perfect.
Season 3: I know everyone LOVED the “three divas” during the season…but I honestly wasn’t a huge fan of Jhud until Dreamgirls. That being said, the “three divas” being the top 3 would have been better than Jasmine Trias making it. What bunk!
Season 4: This…is not a season I know much about (I know, ironic). So…I honestly don’t know anything about Vonzell. Next!
Season 5: Overall, this was a good top 3. Similar to Jennifer Hudson, I didn’t feel much for Daughtry while he was in the competition. Confession alert: Taylor Hicks was actually my favorite during the season. So…I dunno, maybe this top 3 would have been better if Daughtry had been in there for McPhee…
Season 6: Unlike a lot of people, season 6 is actual a favorite of mine (minus Sanjaya…although he was hilariously bad, unlike some other VFTW picks who were simply bad). I quite liked this top 3. But, I probably would have switched Blake for Lakisha.
Season 7: This season focused so much on “David vs. David” that the third finalist didn’t even matter much. Sorry!
Season 8: Ugh. What was Danny Gokey doing there? Replace him with the wonderful Allison Iraheta and we would have had the best top 3 ever.
Season 9: Season 9 sucked. Top 3? More like top 1 (and that “1″ was Crystal Bowersox.)
Season 10: Solid top 3 but Haley was CLEARLY on another level.
Season 11: Overall good top 3…but I still have very mixed feelings over Phillip Phillips.
So…I think I would say the most “evenly matched” tops 3′s occurred during season 2, season 5, season 6, and the last couple of seasons. Why the long introduction? Just so I could make the declaration that season 12, despite all its problems, has given us one of the strongest, most evenly matched top 3′s in American Idol history. I’m not saying this was a perfect season as a whole. I’m not even saying the top 10 was all that great. But these three girls remaining are (for the most part) the cream that have thankfully risen to the top of my mocha cap.
And I think this is a very diverse top 3. We have Candice who has an R&B Jazmine Sullivan thing going on. We have Angie who is a Miley Cyrus-inspired pop rocker, sort of a female Billy Joel if you will. And then we have Kree: the thoughtful, mature country girl. All three contestants have something great to offer. And…most importantly…THEY ARE ALL GIRLS. I know I know…we’ve known this for 3+ weeks now; but this season is going to give us our first female winner in 6 years. Quelle exciting!
So people can bitch and complain at how manipulative this show has been this season (because American Idol TOTALLY has never been manipulative before). I will be enjoying these fine ladies battle it out until the end. And, while I’m still rooting for an Angie/Candice finale at this point, even the thought of Kree winning makes me smile. I’m happy…
But, a few minutes ago, I was a bawling mess. I usually don’t cry during eliminations. The last few times I remember crying was when Haley was eliminated in season 10, Allison in season 8, and Melinda in season 6 (I also cried after Crystal performed “People Get Ready” in season 9 but that’s different story.) But when my little Amber Holcomb got eliminated, my stomach dropped. And then when she was trying to get through “I Believe in You and Me,” my eyes water. And when her father came on stage to hug her, I lost it. Wooh! Emotions!
This wasn’t surprising. We all saw it coming. Most people believed Amber should have been the next to go. Honestly, I still prefer Amber to Kree but…maybe it was Amber’s time. It was Amber’s time. She had a great run but, quite honestly, I have to compare her to Candice. Candice is simply the stronger, more experienced artist. So if one of them had to go…then it’s good that it was Amber. I wish Amber had grown more during her run…but maybe that needs to happen off the show.
But…she really was a contestant I enjoyed immensely throughout the competition. Some of her performances early in the season still stick in my head (She’s Loving Home – which is definitely making my top 20 list in a few weeks, Lately, What About Love, Love on Top). It’s very impressive that she was able to make it far despite barely being featured before the Las Vegas round. She clearly made her mark with “My Funny Valentine” (her first performance) and that’s impressive enough. Even though she’s gone, she will always be a member of the “original fab 4.”
So…where does she go from here? Who knows? I’m not going to sit here and pretend she’ll be the next Whitney. It seems like fewer and fewer AI finalists find commercial success post tour. But…she still did something a lot of singers would not have been able to do and that’s a reward in itself.
However…if/when she puts out a new single (maybe with the help of Nicki?), I’ll be the first to download it.
Anyway, I think I’m just going to end this post here. A few other things happened but I think everything I needed say was said tonight. See ya next week (…maybe.)