American Idol this season has often been lackluster, boring and sometimes downright painful to watch. Hands down, we think it is one of the worst seasons ever. Fully half of the contestants probably should have never stepped on the Idol stage. Too many of them lingered far too long after proving they had no business singing outside of a karaoke bar. We aren’t even going to talk about how lousy the ‘theme’ selections were from the producers this year.
In the end, however, we did at least manage to keep the best of the bunch for the American Idol finale. Oh, and Lee DeWyze wasn’t that bad either. While frankly we never felt DeWyze could measure up against Crystal Bowersox‘s powerhouse voice, he at least gave it everything he had last night. Head to head against Mama Sox, however, DeWyze just couldn’t compete.
For the first song, Lee DeWyze pulled out Simon & Garfunkel‘s “The Boxer”. While it wasn’t a terrible song choice, it lacked the power and passion that propelled him to possible winner status in his recent “Hallelujah” performance.
Crystal Bowersox wisely bowed to Janis Joplin for her first song choice, reprising one of her best performances of the season with “Me and Bobby McGee”. Personally, we felt this performance was even better than the first time around. It may have been a bit less ‘wow’ to listen to, but it was pure Bowersox – simple, genuine and packing a serious punch.
We don’t know what American Idol producer Simon Fuller was thinking when he picked R.E.M.‘s “Everybody Hurts” for DeWyze’s second song. He struggled for the notes and clearly lacked the vocal prowess to make the song anything but a sad shadow of the original. Then again, we firmly believe that no one but Michael Stipe should ever sing that song.
While we wouldn’t have chosen Alannah Myles‘ “Black Velvet” for Crystal Bowersox’s second performance either, we still loved it – despite a few shaky moments. Mostly we think those slightly sketchy notes were due more to the heels and tight dress Bowersox was tottering around in than any inherent flaw in her vocals.
If anyone had any doubts about who should take home the American Idol winner title this season, it should have been put to rest with the last two performances of the night. Lee DeWyze unfortunately took on Bono’s “Beautiful Day” – a song that he should probably never even sing in the shower. You never want to cringe during a performance on the American Idol finale and we did during this song, several times.
For Crystal Bowersox, however, the final song was that cathartic moment of awe we were waiting for all night long. Bowersox sang Patty Griffin‘s “Up to the Mountain” and we wanted nothing more than to climb up there to that mountain with her every step of the way. When a song literally brings a hint of tears to your eyes in the final notes, you know you’ve just been witness to greatness.
Tonight the final two will take to the American Idol stage to face the voters. Will it be Adam Lambert falling to Kris Allen all over again? Or will America choose the right American Idol winner this time?
>> Previously:Â Who Will Win American Idol 2010? Our Pick