Gentle Giant Killing on ‘Idol’

Elimination came a day early on “American Idol” this week as the show announced it was cutting finalist Jermaine Jones, who judges kept calling “the gentle giant,’ for not disclosing a previous arrest, or that he was had four warrants out on him.

Early ousters have happened before in 10 previous seasons of “Idol,” but none have been played out so dramatically. Ryan Seacrest announced that someone was pulled at the beginning of the show, but didn’t have the finalists all come out at the beginning of the show at first, leaving it up to viewers (who hadn’t heard the news online already) to guess.

(That ploy was upended in some markets when local news cut in said the name of the contestant during a midshow promo).

Eventually, Seacrest gave the details near the end of the show, and there was a self-serving gotcha conversation between producers and Jones, which didn’t give him much of a chance to defend himself.

They were sad about sending him off especially since his song this week had been so strong (so they showed a bit of his rehearsal run through).

Jones’ ouster means the Top 12 had already been cut to 11, eliminating the need for a results show, though it looks like they’ll go through the motions of one. Indeed, Seacrest said that phrase that made it sound like nobody was going home for sure, assuring “someone may be eliminated.”

Jones going means another things to the remaining 11 – after a finalists field that began with 7 guys and 6 women, female now dominate the group for the first time in several seasons, 6-5.

Singers had to pick a song from the year they were born, an exercise that provided only a couple of strong performances and showed overall how bad music was in the 80s and 90s. Fully half the songs they presented were remakes of songs that had been hits earlier from “Let’s Stay Together” to “When a Man Loves a Woman.”

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