“American Idol” Recap: I Want to Hold Lazaro’s Hand

Wuh-oh. Looks like a few of our favorite could-be-homosexuals tripped in their character shoes this week.

The catalog of Lennon and McCartney provides ample opportunity for Idol singers to prove they can do artistic things like warble the lyrics to “Come Together” with a straight face or care about the plight of Father McKenzie. Please! Paul Jolley don’t have time for that! He’s too busy “woodshedding” with my boy Devin, hopefully.

How did the kids do this week? Let’s rank the rubber-souled scamps from #9 to #1. 

9. Lazaro Arbos, “In My Life”

Well, my prophecy is coming true: The worse Lazaro does, the more gorgeous he gets. And this week he was absolutely terrible/stunning! Wearing a primary yellow blazer that Samantha Jones might bring to a business-casual orgy, Lazaro took to the stage with those trembling, all-too-wet pupils and basically murmur-whispered “In My Life” in a funereal drone. That might be kinda thrilling in a romantic situation, but not on the glorious open Idol stage of valor and dreams. It was just flat, and Lazaro seemed to know it the minute his song ended. He cried right in front of us, which is what I’d request of him in an intimate situation, but Ryan Seacrest‘s allergic reaction to emotions ruined the moment. Did you notice that while Lazaro wept, Seacrest was covered in throbbing purple hives? Weird but predictable.

8. Angie Miller, “Yesterday”

Confession: I don’t get the “artistry” of Angie Miller. She’s been called an artist so many damn times, you’d think she performs her songs while hanging upside-down and tied up like a Laurie Anderson installation. Her performances are well-sung but unfailingly boring, and this languid, endless, almost songless take on “Yesterday” had all the convincing emotion of Seacrest’s new batch of enamel. And if I may dredge up my old problem with Keith calling Paul Jolley “theatrical” again, how can the judges so thoroughly reject the hammy stage gestures of one contestant while forgiving Angie Miller’s desperate mugging and waving? Girlfriend looks like she’s performing air-traffic control for unicorns up there. I think she has the potential to be relevant, and in the past two weeks, she has withered considerably. “I Surrender” may have been a grimmer statement than we realized. Celine, you bastard!

7. Janelle Arthur, “I Will”

Now, to be fair, this was Janelle’s best performance in weeks. Light, earnest, and sweet enough to make me forgive the God-awful, shock-white Jessica McClintock gown she tried to kill us with. But the problem with Janelle Arthur is this: We do not need a Janelle Arthur. More realized versions of Janelle already exist in pop culture and on Nashville, and there’s sort of nothing to nurture in her quaint, baked-peach-cobbler-with-an-extra-dab-a’-cream-for-ya-sugar vivaciousness. We’ve already seen the best of her, I expect, and now when I watch her on Idol I find myself waiting for the performance to be over so she can say something Miley-ish and conjure a quick smile on my face. Before I go back to forgetting she performed at all.


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