Roxanne is first. Roxanne is from Dudley, or one of those other regressive Northern places where people mangle their vowels. She's doing Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word. I've heard Roxanne is a favourite on the show, but this rendition lacks vocal clarity, and besides, she's wearing a silver miniskirt. How apologetic is she, if she's wearing a silver miniskirt? I refuse your apology, Roxanne. The judges loved it completely. I didn't see it, to be honest. It wasn't bad, not at all, but it wasn't 'on the money', as Simon claims.
Chris the Vicar's son sings Circle Of Life. Eight Elton songs tonight, and they couldn't think of better? Chris is off-key, hammy and camp. Very Elton, you may think. No, Elton's a decent singer, especially measured against this. Chris can belt out the big notes, but he can't seem to manage the ones that get him there. He looks like a Fraggle, too, which isn't good. The judges are all on my side for this one. Cowell calls it terrible. Good.
Next up, Andy (who-used-to-be-in-3SL-and-is-the-brothe
Michelle gets points from me for admitting that she did suspect Elton was just a lookalike. But Michelle, or Fat Lass #1, as she's affectionately known around these here parts, loses points for simply not having as good a voice as we like to pretend she does. She's decent, but judging by what I've seen so far, she's not so great that she can overcome her image. That's the cruel truth. She's doing Your Song, and brings a new meaning to the line, "I'm not one of those who can easily hide". I'm now imagining her behind a lamppost saying, "Can you see me now?" Yes, Michelle, we can see you. Especially in that shimmery puce top. Her vocal would get her a strong reception at karaoke, and it gets a strong reception on Pop Idol (sorry, repeating myself there), but it wasn't special. Pete points out that whoever sang Your Song would get through tonight. Probably true.
Sam is next. Sam is the 'cute' one. Not lickable cute, but, you know, Sylvanian Families cute. He's doing I Want Love, the best song of the night so far, in my 'umble opinion (though it's the most obscure song, too, so not the tactical choice). Good little performance, this. Nice vocal, hints of a rock edge to his voice, an apparent actual reading of the song (heavens!); quality, frankly. I don't have much of an idea of Sam as a person, but he seems quite nice. Easily my favourite so far.
Kim, aka Fat Lass #2, singing The One, which is one of those songs you know, even if you don't recognise the rather nondescript title. Kim looks like Laetitia Dean tonight. She's struggling until the chorus kicks in. Potentially, a stronger voice than Michelle, but less obvious personality. Probably more likeable for that, actually. She was OK. Again, unspectacular. Everyone's repeating my point about it being a song you don't recognise by the title. Once again, I'm left wondering if I'm particularly attuned to the group psyche with my ever-accute, brilliantly insightful observations. I'm so clever, I don't know how people can stand to read me.
The ads include an advert for a McDonalds burger that's being launched in the UK, but not in the US. Why? Is it an internet savvy notion to make Britons go to McDonalds so they can taunt their electric interweb Yanqui friends about a burger they can't eat? Is that what the world has come to?
Mark, the one who sounds like Frank Skinner. God, there's no good totty on this show, is there? Bring back Jamie Tinkler! Mark is doing Something About The Way You Look Tonight. He sounds good. Seems to get all the notes spot on without trying, and very much looks the part when he's onstage. The voice is a little too Westlife, but he's alright. Should do fine.
I'm disappointed. No Rocket Man, no Pinball Wizard, no Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting, which would have been a sublime experience on Pop Idol. Tiny Dancer would have been nice, even though everyone conspires to lie about "what a wonderful moment that is" in Almost Famous. No Bitch Is Back, but I suppose I can understand that. But there's one contestant left to do. It's Susanne, with the wonderful smoky voice, and she's doing... I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues. Good choice, especially for her.
That was great. I have become very fond of Suzanne, who is easily the show's most distinctive entertainer. Very atypical for this show, but she'd be the one whose music I'd actually want to listen to on the radio. The judges are panning her, for some reason. She's taking it with good grace and admitting that she usually agrees with the judges, so they could well be right tonight. They weren't.
Recap. Roxanne: Patchy. Chris: Awful. Andy: Weak. Michelle: Wedding singer. Sam: Decent. Kim: Fun. Mark: Accomplished. Suzanne: Emotive. I suppose passionate performances aren't really what they go for on Pop Idol, is it? Ah well.
Chris deserves to go home. If Suzanne goes home, I'll sulk. Results? Maybe later.