Let's be real here -- nothing of note really happened on "Idol" Thursday night. True, it was an hour-long show, and sure, the always-important selection of groups for the always-entertaining Group Round took place. But really, what happened?
First, we learned that last night's fallen contestant, Symone Black, is not only fine, but also moved on to the show's next round. The culprit of her fall? The 16-year-old passed out from dehydration.
The idea of sickness, needing medical attention and the like was a recurring theme on Thursday night's show. Because... yeah, you know, "Idol" is about that sort of thing and all. Seriously, it seemed like the show couldn't go five minutes without mentioning the health of one of its contestants.
After determining Symone's fate (and cutting hopefuls Lauren Mink and Ethan Jones), the remaining 185 contestants were told to form into groups of four or five. Not a problem in theory, until executive producer Ken Warwick revealed the catch: groups had to be a mixture of contestants who had performed on the first day of Hollywood Week and those on the second.
As such, many singers had trouble finding groups to join. One such contestant was the flu-ridden Amy "Tent Girl" Brumfield, who had a fever, and the only prescription was more cowbell finding a group that would take her in. Though momentarily enlivened once she teamed up with the Make You Believers, Amy struggled with her illness throughout the entire episode -- and, as the show seemed to imply, got many other contestants sick.
So, cue barf bags. Or perhaps various contestants were getting sick at the mere thought of working with St. Louis cop Alisha Bernhardt. Did you get that? She's a cop. It's OK if you didn't get it the first time, as she only mentioned it every other sentence.
Amy and Alisha weren't the only two with problems. Phil Phillips had an implied bout with kidney stones, which only added to his experience with his own group, MIT (Mostly International Team). Though Phil and Jairon Jackson seemed fairly chill, it was Heejun Han who took issue with country-ish Richie Law and the direction in which the 19-year-old was taking their group. Richie claimed to have at least some knowledge of music theory, and therefore wanted to add a dimension to his group performance a la harmonized vocals. A fair request, right?
Not for Heejun, apparently. The early fan favorite didn't follow Richie's insistence on chords and salsa dance moves, eventually providing us with the greatest soundbite of the season so far: "Now I have a very, very bad perspective against cowboys. Even Dallas Cowboys. Freakin' Cowboys." Heejun, never change.
One group, The Bettys, dealt with a whole other problem -- sleep deprivation. While certain members of the five-girl group complained that they needed sufficient sleep, one member, Jennifer Marsh, insisted on continuing, as she felt that their group wasn't nearly ready to perform for the judges. Eventually, the other four members of Jennifer's group went to bed, though Brianna Bell returned a short while later, and the duo finally accomplished something.
Hey, as Steven Tyler said, "I think a little sleep deprivation brings out the best out of everybody." This coming from a man who looks like he hasn't slept since at least 1983, you should listen to him, kids.
Little was shown of groups that were actually enjoying anything resembling success. However, we caught a fleeting glimpse of one team that featured the Bieberlicious Eben Franckewitz and David Leathers. I'm so glad they found each other.
Just as the first performers of Group Round -- The Bettys -- were about to sing, the show cut to black, with Ryan Seacrest promising footage of the group auditions for next Wednesday night.
All told, the only singing viewers heard all night was the occasional sounds of practice -- between footage of vomiting contestants and feuding groups, of course. If that was your cup of tea, good on you.
Bring on the singing.
- Reality Check