TV Recap

The Minus Men

Can K. Lo squeak into the finals? Jessica Shaw says a night when Clay and Ruben faltered might be enough for Kimberley to become one of next week's two

Kimberley Locke, American Idol | THREE'S COMPANY The finalists will find out tomorrow which one of them won't make it to the last round -- will it be Kimberley?
THREE'S COMPANY The finalists will find out tomorrow which one of them won't make it to the last round -- will it be Kimberley?

Can K. Lo squeak into the finals?

Whatever problems you may or may not have with this season of ''American Idol,'' one thing is for certain: This was a far more tense final three show than we had last year. Last year you knew Nikki was outta there (and thank you, Simon, for managing to take a jab at the poor talentless girl a full year later) and you sort of even knew Kelly would take it over Justin. After Tuesday's show, how the heck are we supposed to know what's going to happen? Each contestant had one great performance, but other than that, there wasn't an obvious superstar.

Big Ruben was steady and strong with his first two songs, but -- dare I say it -- the guy choked on that final song. Maybe it was distracting having those buckets of sweat pouring down his face, but he could not manage to stay on key during ''If Ever You're in My Arms Again.'' Did you notice that none of the judges commented on the song, but only addressed his overall strength. ''You've done enough to prove you should be [in the finals],'' Simon said. Hello, when has the guy ever missed an opportunity to take down a performance? Playing favorites, perhaps?

Too bad he didn't show the same respect for poor spiky Clay, with his carefully plucked eyebrows and white man's overbite. After that hideous ''Vincent,'' all I could think was Clay just became this year's Tamyra. A bad song choice and buh-bye. Granted, a random choice wasn't his fault, but how could the guy forget his words? Sure the song is hardly memorable, but even I knew that stupid ''Now I understand…'' part.

He made a nice comeback with ''Mack the Knife,'' but come on with the ''Unchained Melody.'' A droplet of creativity might have scored him a few more points with the voters. That's about as original as belting out ''I Will Always Love You'' during the audition process. And when he was belting out ''I need your love'' to the audience, it was obvious the guy knew he was in trouble. What Paula was thinking when she called that the ''best performance of the entire competition'' is beyond me.

Oh, I'm sorry. For a second there I was thinking Paula has logical thoughts. We’re talking about the woman who said, ''That was the perfect mix of a diamond. You're sparkly and you're smooth as silk'' and referred to Ruben's dimple as ''the money shot.'' Paula, it's time to pack your bags and leave planet evil metaphor forever. Well, okay, if it's dissing Paula hour, we might as well bring up the hat. Wrong. So very wrong.

Speaking of wrong, it's one thing for Joe Millionaire to show up at ''American Idol.'' Brooke Burke, fine. But Quentin Tarantino? You know how some celebrities disappear and you wonder where they’ve gone because they've all but fallen off the planet. Well, if you're an Oscar winner gone AWOL, don't choose the ''American Idol'' audience as your re-emergence into the spotlight.

The biggest winner of the night had to be Kimberley… not because she was so extraordinary, but because Ruben and Clay's less than perfect nights may have left a spot open for the unfortunately nicknamed K. Lo. Common sense may tell us that Kimberley is headed back to law school tomorrow night, but it wouldn't be the shock of the century if she managed to pull off another week. You just know she was sitting backstage during ''Vincent'' and secretly doing a jig. Maybe that's why she forgot to zip up those pants.

Who do you think is going home Wednesday night?

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Originally posted May 13, 2003
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