American Idol 11 – Finale Part One

Coming tomorrow night to FOX: The Coronation of King Phillip.

I guess it’s the theory that the voting public that watches “American Idol” is made up of a disproportionate number of texting tweenie girls, but the odds of a Southern good-looking boy winning “Idol” only increases every year. It’s not so much that the show needs a rules change as it needs a new audience.

But, to me, it’s no contest. Phillip won the first night of the finale, hands down. “Stand By Me” was underutilized. He skated by on that one and did nothing memorable. But the Billy Joel song (“Anthony’s Song (Movin’ Out)” was an awesome original take that had all the Phillip hallmarks. And the Idol song was — well, I didn’t like it the first time, but got into it on a second viewing a lot more. It’s not the power ballad approach to the Idol Song, though I guess it is when you consider who was singing it. But it’s a catchy ditty that’ll stick with you, and shows you how good Phillip can be when he isn’t bouncing behind his guitar and pointing his toes in or awkwardly looking for something to do with his non-microphone hand when he’s guitarless.

(Though if you like songs titled “Home” with a strong drumbeat, might I recommend Marc Broussard’s powerhouse song?)

Meanwhile, Jessica went with a karaoke night. The first two songs were very well sung. She’s got impressive pipes, and we all know she can hit those notes. A few years back, that might have been enough to win it for her. But these days, it’s pure karaoke. She stuck to the songs very closely. They were in her wheelhouse. It seemed too easy for her. She would have been better off going back to that Beyonce song with the red doors or something.

And that Idol song continued a long-standing tradition of everyone on Idol hating the Idol song. It’s bad when the judges all hate the song and the contestant agrees with them. Ouch. It all adds up to a bad night.

Philip wins it tomorrow night.

The finale would have been much more interesting with Joshua Ledet, though, don’tcha think?