American Idol recap: latest pulls a fast one on contestants

American Idol pulled a fast one, putting a quarter of the 212 contestants who got through to...

American Idol pulled a fast one, putting a quarter of the 212 contestants who got through to Hollywood in a ‚Äúsing for their survival‚ÄĚ round. (YouTube)

Jane Stevenson, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:39 PM ET

Yes, American Idol pulled a fast one in its fourth week on Wednesday night, putting a quarter of the 212 contestants who got through city auditions to Hollywood to a “sing for their survival” round in a “secret” airplane hanger after just deplaning.

Host Ryan Seacrest called it a “shocking wake up call."

But really what did everyone think of judge Keith Urban’s shorter, blonde streaked hair?

Cute right?

Okay, back to the surprise round, which basically served to cull the weaker singers from the stronger pack or as Urban so correctly put it: “These we were all people we were on the fence about.”

In other words, why not just cut them the first time around instead of delaying the inevitable with what seemed an even more humiliating second audition in front of their fellow contestants AND the jurors.

“No one wants to hear their name called,” said Seacrest dramatically.

It all just seemed like a major timewaster to me and I’d still love to see Idol cut down from two hours to one on Wednesday nights in a tighter, and brighter format (as it does on Thursday nights).

Still, the round did serve to cause some fighting between the judges over the likes of sound healer Adam, who didn’t know the piano chords to Imagine Dragons’ Radioactive irking Urban and fellow judge Harry Connick Jr., even though Jennifer Lopez came to his defence.

“I felt like at least he’s got something going on,” said a fiesty, swearing, JLo.

About a quarter of the way through Wednesday night’s show, those 160 whose names weren’t called were excused while the remaining 52 sat nervously awaiting their fate as they were further divided into two groups.

One bus took one group to the hotel in Hollywood to check in with the others, the other back to the airport where people started to cry.

Hey, at least Adam was among the 20 on the bus that got to join the other contestants until “the brutal competition of Hollywood week,” at the Dolby Theatre.

From there they performed in a group line, one at a time, before being regrouped into packs of three and four for “group day” taking place Thursday night.

Madjesty performed Feist’s 1234 on acoustic guitar and was among the 104 who made it onto group day where another 50 will apparently be cut.

“Oh, my God, I love her,” said Jlo, who also gave C.J.’s version of Ray LaMontagne’s Trouble a standing ovation.

Spencer, on keyboards, also wowed with A Great Big World’s Say Something.

“He knows who he is,” said Urban.

Kenzie “threw it down,” with Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ Can’t Hold Us, as did Jena with Lana Del Ray’s Video Games and both passed through.

But twin Selena choked mid-song and was sent home in tears while Munfarid, who Connick held in his arms during his initial audition, made everyone laugh with his unsual take on Proud Mary but still made it onto the next round.

Urban also showed folks how it’s done when he grabbed contestant Dexter’s acoustic guitar after he performed The Civil Wars’ Barton Hollow.

Group day will see the contestants judged on “choregraphy, harmony and unique performances,” but vocal coaches were fought over Wednesday night when there wasn’t disharmony among many of the groups.

Clark actually quit when he got sick and lost his voice while his group members Jessica and Matthew fought over his inability to do harmonies and they eventually split up to be in different groups.

And Emmanuel and Carmen lost their third member (Tarika?) who went searching for her phone and only reluctantly returned after they tracked her down in her room the next day.

“Group day - you should call it Hell Day,” said Emmanuel, summing it up nicely.

Another twist announced Wednesday night? The final spot in the Top 30 is going to be decided by the viewers.


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