It’s a big week Duets fans (yes, all 3 of you), we’re going live! The contestants’ careers, or 15 minutes of fame, are no longer in the hands of the superstars, but have been entrusted to the American people! Yes, the same American people who voted for Taylor Hicks and Lee Dewyze…
Moving right along, the show begins with something I will nerdily admit that I’ve missed the last few week’s: a performance from the judges. The fab 4 hit the stage to riff their way through George Michael’s “Freedom,” which clearly fits perfectly with the night’s theme, Song of the Millennium. Erm, what? Also, Robin Thicke may have tried to dress like 80’s-style George Michael, but instead, he looks much more like “90210”-style Dylan McKay, ready to break some hearts at West Beverly High. Speaking of West Bev, Kelly Clarkson has transformed from Brenda Walsh into Kelly Taylor between tapings. Well played, KC.
Our always SO EXCITED host, Quetzalcoatl (Google it.) points out how much the superstars have changed, even more than I just did. Since last week’s episode, big things have happened, like Robin Thicke growing a beard. My BFF, Jennifer Nettles announced that she’s having a baby and I took up knitting in the hopes of being able to make some booties in time. Kelly Clarkson somehow found a time machine that transported her back about 7 years to exactly what she looked like in 2005, and John Legend, is still dull. And muppet-like.
Quddus reminds us that Jennifer Nettles is now the only superstar with 2 contestants left. Now that we know she’s pregnant, it’s obvious she’s been singing for two all along. Interestingly enough, her unborn fetus still has more charisma and talent than Robin Thicke.
First up tonight is Jennifer Nettles and John Glosson, who we learn has A WIFE and a wedding design store. And that’s all I’m going to say about that. He’ll be taking on “When You Say You Love Me” by Josh Groban, and once again, he and Jennifer sound great together. However, it’s more of the same, and I think I’d love to hear this song if I was in an elevator or a dentist chair wearing one of those iron vests that protect your organs from radiation damage. Anyway, Johnny G is way more mega-church than Madison Square Garden, and there’s nothing wrong with that. As the song comes to a close, there’s some theatrics and for a split second, I think they might make out. Now I’m just super uncomfortable and find myself trying to decide if John looks more like Slimer or the Stay-Puff Marshmallow Man. I’m thinking the latter.
Next up is Robin Thicke and Olivia “Why the heck are you still on this show?” Chishholm. Seriously, why is Jordan gone and this Beyonce by-product still on my television? If Beyonce was an organic, farm-raised chicken, Olivia would be all the leftover pieces that they grind up into pink slime to make into a school lunch chicken nugget. Robin has chosen one of the best songs of the last few years, and considering that this is a country music blog, I should be excited by his choice of Lady Antebellum‘s “Need You Now.” However, they kill it, and not in a good way. Olivia mentions that this song will show off her strong voice, but instead, it sounds like she’s singing into a tin can. Robin Thicke is certainly no Charles Kelley, except for the fact that they both wear exceptionally tight pants. On certain parts of the song, namely the extended “nows,” Olivia’s sounds like her vocal chords are in a losing battle with a small goat. Now-ow-ow-OW, my ears. The judges try to be nice, but it’s obvious they hated it. I did too.
As we cut to commercial break, I’m wondering if ABC borrowed the superstars’ chairs from that terrible dating show, “The Choice.” Is THAT how Jennifer Nettles got pregnant? Quddus, where do babies come from?
Hitting the stage next are Kelly Clarkson and my TV boyfriend, Jason Farol, taking on Duffy’s “Mercy.” Since the last show, Jason has found some serious swagger, while Kelly found a bottle of peroxide. If she was Miley last week, this week, she is most definitely Hannah Montana. Their performance starts with Jason front and center, hips a-swiveling, while KC takes on backup duties before joining him up front for a full out duet. Together, these two slay the song. I’m not sure where THIS Jason has been hiding the last few weeks, but I’m glad he finally showed up. He picked the right moment to shine and if there were any girls watching tonight between the ages of say 12 and 40, I bet he scored some votes. A tweet from Reba appears on the screen supporting Team Kelly, and I file that under “things not shocking.”
John Legend and Bridget Carrington are up next to take on “Already Go…” I mean, “Halo” by Beyonce. Somewhere, Ryan Tedder is cackling in a stack of money. The way Fozzie sings is totally distracting and someone needs to let him know that he doesn’t need to open his mouth so wide when he sings to prove he’s articulating. Instead, I’m just waiting for him to throw a pie at us or something. Bridget shines here and all of the judges praise her, and for the first time, I’m a Bridget fan.
Last but not least is front-runner J. Rome. He and J. Net will be tackling “Without You” by Usher and David Guetta, or Gwedda if you ask Jennifer. I think that’s a kind of cheese. This video package only reaffirms my desire to be BFFs with Jennifer. This song definitely plays to J. Rome’s strengths and style as an artist, but the performance itself feels like it just lept off the CMT Crossroads stage. J. Rome is smooth and a decent dancer, but Jennifer looks like a marionette who just got her strings cut and found out she can move her arms and legs freely. It’s awkward yet oddly entertaining. The judges love J. Rome once again, and in what must be the utter display of love or an attempt to knock him in the vocal chords, Kelly hurls her sparkly heel at him.
There we have it…the first live episode is a wrap! Although it’s pretty clear who SHOULD go home, it will be interesting to see who actually does. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t be shocked to see John Glosson get the boot. He sang first, was rather forgettable and may fall prey to Jennifer’s fans being forced to split their votes between two contestants. However, I’ll keep my fingers crossed for the chicken nugget, Olivia, to get kicked out of this Happy Meal.
Who did you vote for, and more importantly, whose flame should be extinguished on “Duets” island?