Group Night Power Rankings

Just in case you aren’t aware of the term, let me explain “spoiler”. Idol sets it’s semifinal round lineup well ahead of the show. There are dozens of people that were “in the room” when the semifinalists were announced. In addition to the judges and the contestants (and parents, friends and bartenders), there are stage hands, band members, production assistants, key grips, foley artists, janitors, best boys and gaffers who get hounded by everyone about what they know. Eventually, just like press leaks in DC, the list gets out every year. Once it’s out, several sights post “spoiler” lists of the semifinalists. It’s considered proper ettiquette among them to warn anyone who is looking for Idol news that they have “spoilers” on their site. Occasionally a site won’t know about it, usually because they are not entertainment websites. I have come across a couple of spoilers which I will mention below. In all cases, spoilers are unverified and cannot be assumed to be the truth. If I write “spoiler” in one of my Idol Articles, that’s what I am talking about. Ok, on with the rankings.

I listed all of the known survivors of group night, pulled out of several websites. I found 52 confirmed “not killed” out of the actual total of 71 reported by Ryan Seacrest. This will be my last preseason power ranking, and my last incomplete power ranking. By the end of next week the number of contestants will be down to 24, and the guessing will be over. From then on we will know all of the remaining contenders.

I separated the males and females again. I will continue to do this until the final 12 is set. Idol will be presenting them this way in the semis, 12 of each:

Male Contenders:

1-Andrew Garcia

2-Casey James

3-John Park

4-Todrick Hall

5-Lee Dewyze

6-Lloyd Thomas

7-Jermaine Sellers

8-Jermaine Purafoy

9-Michael Lynch- There was a published spoiler article that said that Lynch made the semifinals, but was disqualified because his father let the news out too early. I have no idea if this is true or not. If it’s true he is out, and that leaves another spot up for grabs among the rest of the contestants.

10-Aaron Kelly

11-Tyler Grady

12-J. B. Ahfua

13-Luke Shaffer

14-Thaddeus Johnson

15-Jeff Goldford

16-Jareb Liewer

17-Alex Lambert

18-Tim Urban

Female contenders:

1- Katie Stevens

2- Ashley Rodriguez

3- Janelle Wheeler

4- Didi Benami

5- Lilly Scott

6- Angela Martin

7- Chrystal Bowersox

8- Tasha Layton

9- Haeley Vaughn

10- Charity Vance

11- Michelle Delamore

I mixed up the power rankings a bit, but that’s only for the semifinals. I still believe that Didi is the best, but the top three ahead of her have been relentlessly shilled for in theHollywoodweek shows. While they are no more likely to win the competition than Didi, they are vastly more likely to make it to the semis. The same applies to Crystal Bowersox. She has a better shot at winning than all but maybe Didi, but it’s not a lock that the judges will even give her the chance because of her style of performing.

As for the rest of the contenders and hopefuls, this is a list of the confirmed group night survivors. I didn’t list them in any order, since most of them haven’t had enough airtime to even know for sure what they sound like. Instead of ranking them, I’ll try mention something about them if I know anything, and look them up if I don’t remember them.

Hope Johnson- Nerveless kid that sang with Mary Powers and saved food for her little brother. Man, is she skinny. I am not sure that she has the maturity or the professionalism that she will need for this kind of competition yet. She wasn’t composed on group night when she was interacting. When she sings she seems ok, but even there she trailed off in her audition, almost losing it at the end of the thirty seconds. With her background I would expect her to fix all of that eventually, but it’s not something that you can get overnight. She might not be sure, but she shows no fear. I’m guessing that she will be back in a year or two, and able to give it a better go.

Brittany Starr-James- All that I know about her is that she is black, with frilly hair. I liked her audition a lot.

Lacey Brown- Short red hair, just missed the semis last year, sang over the rainbow in her audition. I don’t see why, but they seem to like her. There is no real strength in her voice, and she has no clue about where to breathe. Idol, if there is something about her that you like so much; can you share it with us by giving her some airtime?

Dawntoya Thomason- Short, squatty black girl with a strong voice and (it seems) a good ability to celebrate. Idol has shown her celebrating more than they have shown her singing. She has straight, shoulder length black hair now, not reddish brown like I said before. By next week it will probably be green.

Tisha Holland- Oh, I remember…. She’s really good, sounds like a possible Whitney type, and she has some finesse. Hell, she might be a sleeper.

Liz Rooney- The blonde with the strawberry colored streaks in her hair. She was awful on her big opening bit of the Lady Gaga song. She looks like a thicker Amy Poehler, from SNL. To her credit, once she got out of that awful spot she sounded better and that group’s harmonies were tight. I would be shocked if she made it to the semis, though, more than I would be if Didi didn’t.

Artheria Harden (Theri)- I remember her. Powerful voice; for 3 seconds. Chicks with guitars do very well on Idol. Chicks with leather – not so much.

Mary Powers- Her airtime probably merits her a higher slot, maybe even in the power rankings, but I don’t much like her. It’s not all the drama that got to me, or the hair. It was the “I’ll never work with them again” comment at the end. She isn’t good enough to say that about anyone, in my opinion.

Shelby Dressel- This was a happy surprise.Shelbyis the kid with the nerve damage that makes the right side of her mouth droop. I don’t expect her to make the semis, but it would be very sweet to see her onstage and singing on national television. 71 out of over 100,000 is an incredible feat, for all of these kids.

Jessica Furney- She sang the Simon song in the audition round.

Katylin Epperly- Too much vibrato girl who’s parents split. She is pretty good, almost but not quite good enough to make it to the semis. She loses her pitch when she tries to do more than sing the melody.

Kia Johnson- Miss Congeniality. She might have a chance. I liked her audition, but I was worried about her handling the pressure. Well, she’s here now, isn’t she?

Christian Spear- I loved her audition, and she is this far so it’s all gravy. She is the kid who is in remission for leukemia.

Jessica Cunningham- She was in Neapolitan, the dark skinned, dark haired girl on the right as we viewed it. She was almost shouting, and I am not high on her at all.

Paige Miles- She was in the Lady Gaga mix. I don’t know which one she was, but I am guessing the short black girl that was in the first group. She didn’t sing any lead.

Samantha Musa- I can’t find anything about her from this year, but she was on season 7. She is mostly famous for sitting on Simon’s lap. I have no idea what she is doing here now.

Maddy Penrose- Weird glasses girl

Tori Kelly- Holy crap, she’s still in? She is the 16 year old with the little friend that gave the panel pictures. Leah Laurenti is out, and she is in? I tried to look her up to find out who she was, and she has hundreds of videos on youtube. I smell a total glory hound. She’ll go far. All she needs is a balloon like boob job and a gallon of peroxide, and we have ourselves another Pamela Anderson. She looks like she’s been in a tanning booth since she was 8 years old. I don’t even assume that she knew the little kid.

A few other names that are listed as still in the competition.

Anzeo Henderson

Audrey Vargas

Kellye Vetter

Soibham Magnus

I don’t even know what sex they are, so they are listed down here. Expect at least one sleeper to come out of this group (added later: guess which one was the sleeper?)

Other loose ends:

Jess Wolfe- No sign of her, no clue either way

Jennifer Hirsch- No sign of her either

Holly Hardin- Probably gone, but I’m surprised that she wasn’t shown again

Benjamin Bright- No sign of him or Luke since the auditions. Luke is listed as IN, so I am assuming that his buddy is still in too.

Kelsey Madsen- The little red haired girl; didn’t make it.

Mallory Haley- She is out, ousted the first day ofHollywoodweek. I did some searching and found an interview with her about her ouster from the show. She didn’t seem too torn up about it. She sounded grateful for the chance more than anything. I watched a video that can be found on youtube, with her singing live in front of a band. She wasn’t as good as I would have hoped, but she didn’t suck. She lives inNashvillenow and she is singing, writing songs and knocking on doors. She is still pretty green, to tell you the truth, much like Kelsey is. Mallory is 20, and Kelsey is 19. I doubt that we’ve seen the last of either one of them.

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