Back in the day when we first got this little experiment started, one of the most popular columns (and my favorite column to write) was Television Tuesday. About a year ago, I realized something very important about Television Tuesday. It was such a great column and so much fun to write because I was basically recounting the hilarious conversations my roommate, Hans, and I were having as we were watching our favorite shows. Granted, the conversations were slightly edited, but you get the point. At any rate, since I moved into the WAD Palace last March, I've stayed away from Television Tuesday. But, I'm bringing it back for a one night engagement. And, in the process, I'm opening myself up to relentless heckling for my unabashed love of "American Idol". Well, I love it, and since it was the one show Hans refused to watch, I finally have a chance to write about it. And yes, I realize what a horrible mistake this is.
Okay, here is what we are going to do: Tonight is the first night on the big stage with the Final 13. I'm going to watch them all and list them in the order of their performance, give some commentary, and then I'm going to assign The WAD odds to each contestant. There are three things you should know about these odds: 1) These are my odds. If, for informational purposes only, you go to one of those illegal gambling websites, I'm sure you will find real odds that will look nothing like mine; 2) These are odds as of this week, and they will change on a weekly basis throughout the season (foreshadowing, anyone?); and 3) Because I know Stats will point this out, these are not correctly formulated odds. In Vegas, they have exact formulas for calculating odds, and if one guy has one set of odds, it is impossible for another guy to have another set of odds based on the number of possible outcomes, etc... Well, suffice it so say, I'm not that smart, so these are odds you would never see come out of a real sportsbook. If this bothers you, I will happily provide you with a full refund. All that being said, let's get to it:
1) Lil Rounds - They just showed a look at Lil's life with her three children back in Memphis. It's impossible not to like her. And, she kicks things off with "The Way You Make Me Feel." Not one of my favorite Jacko songs, especially now that I know he was singing to Macaulay Culkin. Anyway, Lil was solid. A little boring for my taste tonight, but I still have no doubt in my mind she is the best female singer in the contest. The judges seem to agree. Kara basically just told the world she hopes Lil wins. And, wow! Paula just said Lil sounds like an angel, and Simon apparently just hit on Lil. And, it's worth noting that Paula appears stoned. I know, shocking.
Bottom line: Lil is the 7-1 to win this thing. For those of you that have never placed a legal wager in Las Vegas, that means you have to risk $1 in the hopes of winning $7 on Lil.
2) Scott MacIntyre - Even if you don't watch "Idol", you probably know Scott as the "blind guy". We just learned two additional things in Scott's bio piece: 1) His sister is also blind; and 2) Scott's family sings together. For now on, we will be calling him Scott Partridge. He sings "Keep the Faith". I've never heard this song before. In fact, I'm pretty sure my buddy, Colby, is the only person I know that has ever heard this song. It's fun watching Mr. Partridge behind the piano. It's also kind of fun watching Kara making several references to "seeing" Scott. Way to rub it in, Kara. (By the way, even though I am sightly obsessed with Kara, even I have to admit that she says just as little as Paula. The biggest difference is Kara is hot and not obviously impaired).
Bottom line: Scott has a lot going for him in this contest, not the least of which is that he is extremely talented. And, of course, his story is one of hope in a time where America needs hope, etc... He's 5-1.
3) Danny Gokey - This guy also has a very compelling story. He sang "PYT". I really like this dude. He's kind of like Taylor Hicks except the exact opposite. For the record, Paula just made a reference to being able to tell who is singing with her eyes closed. Can we get off the vision references? It's just uncomfortable at this point.
Bottom line: I can't believe I'm saying this, but I agree with Paula. Danny is the favorite to win this thing. I've got him at 1-2 (bet $2 to win $1).
4) Michael Sarver - America's favorite roughneck takes the stage. I've got to tell you that this is shaping up to be the most likeable group of "Idol" finalist we've ever seen. Mike bangs out "You are Not Alone". I liked it. The judges loved it. Good job by you, Mike. (TM Chris Russo).
Bottom line: I'm going to slip him in at 20-1 after week 1.
5) Jasmine Murray - It's the 17 year old wildcard from Mississippi. Geez, she's got a great family too. Could we get some people on this show that it's easy to root against? It's so much more fun that way. At any rate, Jasmine takes on "I'll Be There". Listen, I'm going to say something that could force me me to hand in my man card: when Mariah Carey records a song, no "Idol" contestant should ever sing it. Do you ever ask yourself why we are no longer impressed by a free-throw line dunk? Well, it's because MJ did it, and we don't want to see anybody else do it. Can we all agree on this? That being said, Jasmine did fine. She'll likely stick around for a few weeks.
Bottom line: Jasmine is 25-1 to win it all.
6) Kris Allen - Did you see his wife? I think we've found somebody I can hate. So, Krissy busts out the guitar for "Do You Remember?". I can tell you right now that this is the kid that is going to tick me off all season. I think he's a bad John Mayer impersonator (and, for the record, the world doesn't need another John Mayer), but the teenage girls will keep this guy around 5 weeks too long.
Bottom line: 20-1 to win it all.
7) Allison Iraheta - This is the 16 year old girl that the judges fell all over in the prelims. I like her, I guess. I'm still not sure if she's singing or screaming. Plus, she just made a joke about cutting herself. Not really sure what that's all about. Again, I'm uncomfortable.
Bottom line: 10-1 to win it all, and I think she's the best "bet" on the board.
8) Anoop Desai- Anoop is the second best karaoke singer I've ever seen behind my buddy, Beyer. And, he seems like he would be a pretty cool dude to grab beers with in Chapel Hill. Other than that, he's going home after tonight.
Bottom line: 100-1. The longest of long shots.
9) Jorge Nunez - Take it from a guy that has experience betting against Felix Trinidad, it is a horrible idea to underestimate the power of the Puerto Rican fan base. I know people that I trust very much that were attendance on September 29, 2001 when Tito battled Bernard Hopkins in Madison Square Garden, and they swear it was the most electric sporting environment they've ever been a part of. And, unfortunately, much like that fight, Jorge's performance tonight was pretty disappointing. You've got to be fair here, though. This guy is singing in front of millions of people in a language he is still learning. I think it's remarkable, and I find myself rooting for this guy. Unfortunately for him, me rooting for you is usually the kiss of death.
Bottom line: 75-1.
10) Megan Corkey - I can't really be objective here because I haven't liked her as a singer from the start. Again, however, just like all these other folks, she seems like a pretty likeable person, and I can't root against her. I, however, wouldn't vote for her. That sounds really familiar to me. I think I once said the same thing about Bill Clinton.
Bottom line: 65-1
11) Adam Lambert - Hey, it's another guy I feel good about rooting against. No doubt he can sing, but he really creeps me out. Does he remind anybody else of a vampire? Anybody? The judges love him, and based on the audience response, America is going to love him. In fact, at this point, I'm pretty confident he and Danny Gokey will be facing off in the final, and I will be rooting for Danny Gokey like he's facing the Yankees in Game 7 of the Series.
Bottom line: He's just behind Danny at even money.
12) Matt Giraud - This dude kind of reminds me of Justin Timberlake. I'm not going to tell you if that is a good or bad thing.
Bottom line: 12-1. He's not going to win, but he's going to have moments.
13) Alexis Grace - Speaking of JT, Alexis is from Memphis too. And, she gets bonus points because her dad looks like a character from the "Lord of the Rings". I have no idea how she sounded because she sang "Dirty Diana", which distracted me because I haven't heard that song outside a.... Well, let's just say that I only hear that song on bachelor parties these days. Seriously, she seemed okay, but not spectacular. I am, however, a big fan of Kara's comments.
Bottom line: 30-1
So, after week 1, it looks the contenders are Lil, Scott, Danny, Allison, Adam, and Matt is the only legit longshot. But, really, it looks like it is only a two horse race.
Okay, I've made you suffer enough, and I've got a couple of hours of CWebb and GP on Tivo I have to get to before I turn in.