No thanks to the judges -- especially ole Harsh Harry (Connick Jr.) -- Jessica Meuse was not eliminated on Thursday evening's live "American Idol" results show. The Top 7 finalists became six headed toward the finale by show's end, and although the bottom vote-receiving couple of contestants weren't exactly what one would call a surprise, one -- Jessica Meuse -- was there at least partially because the judges were a bit hard on her during the Top 7 performance show. Her bottom-dwelling colleague -- Dexter Roberts -- was there because he has shown almost no progression on the show. And Sam Woolf wasn't there because -- again -- there was no bottom three (because, let's face it, Sam has shown no progression on the show, either). At least, Jessica looks like she's trying to break out of her tough-girl, bad*ss shell.
So... What we have here is just a waiting game to get to the Top 3, which should be Alex Preston, Caleb Johnson, and Jena Irene. Daniel Fienberg at HitFix (via Yahoo Movies) posted in his April 17 recap that he's past caring about the "cannon fodder" and hopes that the three aforementioned vie for the finale. But every season seems to have at least one sleeper, a dark horse, a cinderella, that gets in and that one finalist that ends up being the subject of a shocker episode. Maybe that won't happen this season. But if the producers get their way, Sam Woolf will make it into at least the Top 3, because they're pushing hard to make him a teen heartthrob, always showing the video clips of the young girls screaming.
Host Ryan Seacrest is noticeably absent at the beginning of the show, replaced by Mr. Six Degrees himself, Kevin Bacon, who is reading Seacrest's lines. Enter, of course, the faux-puzzled host, acting as if he's caught Bacon taking over his schtick. But, hey, they're friends, so Ryan let's the incomparable Mr. Bacon say his favorite line: "This is American Idol!"
Ah, acting -- it's not for everyone. Which might explain Ryan's penchant for doing reality television. Hmmmm...
Anyway, we get a glimpse of the Top 7 at their after-performance dinner. Sam Woolf asks Alex Preston if he had to go to the bathroom while performing (Alex does a little rub-leg prance step when he performs that looks as if he's holding it), C. J. calls out Caleb on his bromance with Ryan (Caleb says Ryan came to him in a dream to do the duet), Jena is blown away by hearing Demi Lovato say she'd like to do a duet with her (yeah, that's a set-up for the finale performances), everybody loved C. J.'s "Gravity" and Sam tried to replicate J-Lo's "stankface" of approval, and the guys took a group photo for Twitter for their fans.
Then it was time for someone to go home. The first bunch are brought out on stage and Randy Jackson does his weekly critique or whatever it is he thinks he's doing (which leads to: Does anyone else miss Jimmy Iovine's tough insights?). Dexter Roberts, Alex Preston, and Jena Irene are brought to center stage.
Jena is the first person who shows up on the big screen at the back of the "Idol" stage. And so the Top 6 starts filling up. Second: Alex Preston.
Dexter has to wait for the rest of the show, time slowly ticking away on his stay on the show...
The other four: C. J. Harris, Jessica Meuse, Sam Woolf, and Caleb Johnson are brought out. Caleb is named as the third finalist to make the Top 6. Then C. J.'s face lights up the big screen. Finally, Sam's shocked face appears, leaving Jessica standing alone.
Since we already know what happened (unless you're one of those who skips to the end of the story), Dexter Roberts is left to watch his "journey" on the show and sing his farewell song, "Lucky Man" by Montgomery Gentry. It's one of his better performances -- a shame, since it's his last. But the six remaining finalists file out to give him some company and a few hugs before he heads back to Alabama.
The Top 6 return next week as the "American Idol" Season 13 finalists take on a couple of songs each, one from the country genre, another from rock and roll. "American Idol" airs on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. and Thursdays at 9 p.m. (EST) on Fox Television.