Saturday, February 02, 2008

Miami - Swirling Wind of Ruin

Get it?

Welcome to Miami! Bienvenido a Miami! Ah Miami. Home of Scarface. Will American Idol be leading us on a drug-filled adventure through the crowded beaches and scantily-clad leathery women (and dudes)? Join me please in the crime laden streets of debauchery to see if we can weed out this generation’s emerging mega-talent.

We start with an extraordinarily clever mock-up of the Miami Vice opening credits to prove that we are, in fact, holding today’s auditions in Miami. Oooh, I get it. Miami Vice was in Miami, just like American Idol. Seacrest tells us that over ten thousand certifiably insane people have waited for hours in the heat for their chance to be a superstar. Like Justin Guarini. They herd everyone into an indoor stadium and force them to sing “The Rhythm is Gonna Get You,” by Gloria Estefan, because that is very representative of what is hot right now. Or because she used to belong to Miami Sound Machine and everything has to be a tie-in. Next Don Johnson steps out to wish everyone good luck – wait, no he doesn’t.

Ah, here come the judges. Paula tells us that Miami is one of her favorite cities – never get high on your own supply, Paula – and Simon and Randy have no idea where they are. The whole audition circuit is such a whirlwind, you know. Now we meet a young lady named Shannon McGough – she must be Mexican – who is wearing an outfit straight out of the 80’s and fitting right in with the Miami Vice theme. She’s from Okeechobee, Florida and she tells us that she works at her parents’ glamorous meat market where they have wallpapered the place with pictures of Shannon winning singing contests. Who’s small-town? She also graces us with her belching talent, which is absolutely thrilling, and you just know she thinks it’s hot. She prances in and tells the judges that she will be singing “Cry Baby” by Janis Joplin. Then she opens her mouth and positively screeches her way into the song.

American Alley Cat

Simon gives her an appalled look and tells her that he had a late night last night and he certainly didn’t want to wake up to this nonsense. Paula and Randy agree – they couldn’t detect a melody and it was all-around horrible. Shannon asks if she can’t sing something else and the judges beg her not to, but she does anyway, so they reiterate everything that is wrong with her. Namely, she can’t sing. Shannon is 100% dumbfounded. After all, she won Okeechobee Idol! She’s been “singing” since she was three years old and no one has ever had the nerve to tell her before that she sucks. Simon says (hee hee) that’s because most people don’t know what they’re talking about. So I don’t get it, is she going to Hollywood or not? It’s unclear. Ahem, that would be a unanimous NO and Shannon is seriously baffled. She steps out into the hall where she and her family all look into the cameras imploringly, as if to ask us all if we can believe this tomfoolery. Shannon announces she’s done with American Idol – oh what a sad loss – but now she’s back to Okeechobee where she can win every single contest because when there’s one entrant, guess who wins.

Next we meet Robbie, who used to be in a boy band, but is now a rocker. Well, whatever sells, Robbie. He’s actually got a pretty nice voice, but there is absolutely nothing “rocker” about him. He might as well have sung “Tearin’ Up My Heart.” They like him, so he’s in and he runs out into the hall where his family is waiting to spray him down with silly string. How rocker. Now we see blips of a bunch of guys who totally bite it, including one who is wearing a poncho and who doesn’t sing, but plays a Pan flute – I wish I were kidding.

Lost boy

Ghaleb is Venezuelan and playing his acoustic guitar out in the hall, telling us how music is his entire life and he plays gypsy music on every instrument in existence. For the judges he sings a Marc Anthony song and Simon says he’d only enjoy Ghaleb’s singing if he were drunk. Paula likes him, but says his accent is too thick. Randy says yes, so Ghaleb’s fate hangs on Paula Abdul making the decision of a lifetime. Spying the chance to grab some attention, Paula gets up and starts pacing around the room as if she has never been so tortured. Oh Paula, give it up, you’ve done this ten million times, who cares? She paces her way over to Ghaleb to hug him and tell him, “Welcome to Hollywood.” Ah ha! She was “pacing” in order to find an excuse to physically contact the Latino. Of course he hugs her back but before she can order wedding invitations he prances out into the hall and kisses everyone in sight, including Seacrest who pretends not to like it.

Paula sneaks her cheap thrills.

Up next are Corliss and Brittany, who weigh about 300 pounds each and envelop Seacrest on a small sofa.

Honey, we shrunk Ryan.

They discuss what kind of guys they like and run around the halls hitting on/scaring the pants off of male auditioners, staff, bystanders, what have you. They whine to the judges about their man troubles – that they can’t find any – and Corliss apparently has a thing for Randy. She serenades him with a jazz song, then Brittany does “My Guy” for Simon. They both have incredible voices, but I dare you to picture two white girls that size getting tickets to Hollywood. Congrats, Corliss and Brittany!

Suzanne Toon is aptly named – though sadly misspelled – for this competition. She brings tears to my eyes with her sob story of being a knocked up teen turned single mother needing to win the lottery to support her child. She’s tired of struggling and figures that her best bet is to become a celebrity. She’s also got some really funky ringlets.

"Either I win American Idol or my baby starves."

She sounds good to me, and Paula says that her voice is sultry, so okay. Simon says that when she sang she became more attractive. So, he thinks she’s ugly. Well, she’s in and she runs out into the hall screaming while some woman holds her sleeping three-year-old. Wake up, sweetie! All of mommy’s dreams are about to come true.

For some random reason, now Seacrest does a little plug for a girl named Jasmine Trias, who came in third place on the third season of American Idol. That’s fascinating and I’ve never heard of her and I still don’t care after hearing about her.

Here comes tiny little Ramiele Malubay, who wants to be the first Asian American Idol – she’s Filipino. Simon thinks she’s adorable and after she belts out Aretha Franklin’s “Natural Woman,” I’m almost ready to buy her cd – well, at least download it illegally. Simon tells her she sounds like a hotel singer, as opposed to anything contemporary, but Paula thinks she’s phenomenal, and they let her through.

"Catch my act at the Golden Nugget!"

Oooh, it’s Day 2 now and for some reason Randy is sporting a shirt featuring an enormous flower and we are forced to watch Simon calling his mom. Oh please, where are the singers? Ah, let’s meet Syesha Mercado. She’s thrilled right now because through positive thinking, she has caused many, many, many good things to happen in her life. Well, isn’t that wonderful? Her dad joins her – fresh out of rehab – to wish her luck and tell her he loves her. This is a “touching moment,” you see. For her audition she also chooses an Aretha Franklin number – this one is “Think,” and she nails it. Randy and Paula love her, but of course Simon thinks she had to try too hard. Whatever, she’s going to Hollywood. No “celebrating,” dad.

A girl named Natashia sings tonight’s token “At Last.” I hardly ever watch this show, but each time I have, someone sings this song. Apparently Natashia sings it right, because she’s in. Next a girl named Ilsy sings the stupidest song ever written, which is “Unfaithful,” by Rihanna. She doesn’t want to be… a MURDERER. Ilsy’s in.

Ew, now more snippets from people who suck, including a guy named Grant who has a conniption fit singing a Whitney Houston song. Simon tells him to come back in a dress.

Someone feels like a natural woman.

Then there’s Fabienne Hyppolite, whose name is enough to make her the next American Idol. She sings “When I Fall in Love,” with a really heavy accent while plugging one ear. Simon tells her he was tempted to plug both ears. Sorry, Fabienne. Richard comes in and sings straight through his nose for the judges to rip him to shreds.

Now we are lucky enough to meet Julie Dubela, who has absolutely no doubt of getting invited to Hollywood because you see, she was in the top 20 of American Juniors, four years ago when she was 12. What’s American Juniors? We see clips of a bunch of little kids singing and doing arm motions and the editors have cut in scenes of Julie recreating those performances today for her fellow auditioners. They are so lucky! Julie tells us that this is her dream and she doesn’t believe in mediocrity. Well excuse us, Julie. She marches in like she owns the place and sings another Janis Joplin song. While she sings she strides around making grand arm gestures and Simon cuts her off and tells her he’d rather see it without all the acting. She’s over-rehearsed, you see. They tell her basically that her bark is way too big for her bite – in other words, she sucks. I actually thought she had a nice voice, but her snooty little attitude was enough to make me never want to see her again. They tell her she’s not ready and to take off. With that, she bursts into Mariah Carey’s “Butterfly,” because nothing wins these judges over like being ignored. Simon suggests that Julie give up singing and become an actress and she yell-argues back that she’s just being herself – SHE’S NOT ACTING!!

"Listen, retards. This is like, my real personality.
I was on American Juniors!"

They tell her to forget it and she turns on her heel and storms out. Seacrest has been listening at the door and backs away quick. Julie comes out and announces that she gave up singing at a Red Sox game to grace us with her presence here today and those idiot judges didn’t even have the common courtesy to adore her! She was on American Juniors! She tells us all to be sure and not audition for American Idol. Oh thanks, Julie, I was just zipping up my suitcase. I’m glad you saved me the trip.

Up next is a very “special” hopeful named Brandon Black. He is not only a singer, he is also a standup comedian. He enters his audition in full swing as some obnoxious alter ego of himself, introducing himself while wearing a wig. Suffice it to say it is highly inappropriate and extremely irritating. He finally drops the character and tells Paula he will be singing “I’ll Make Love to You” directly to her. Paula has the audacity to pretend this offends her. Oh please, attention whore. He does a little falsetto thing and starts stripping – I swear this is true – while he sings. He follows his striptease up with a little ditty he wrote himself about him becoming the next American Idol. This is obviously nonsense and the judges tell him to knock it off. So how does he finish? He gets back into his alter ego character and does some more “funny,” then asks them if it is a yes or a no. Ha!

Mercifully this is the end of the Miami audition circuit and we get to see lots of people bawling after being told they are worthless. Only 17 are told they are decent enough to continue to the next round of public humiliation. Next week it’s off to Atlanta where a whole new crop of crazies show up to prove that they are attention-starved wannabes. Can’t wait!

Thanks for reading!
Honey Gangsta

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