I am not a person without opinions. I'll fight to the death to defend my peanut butter (Jif Natural), will mercilessly mock Lady Gaga, and there's a certain well-known, well-loved novel floating around out there with a title I can't pronounce without a sneer. Seriously, don't get me started. And yet, here I am, watching the last two Idols standing, and I just...don't...care. Scotty and Lauren. Oh, ok. I christened Scotty "McCheesy" in the first week, and never did get around to creating a nickname for Lauren. (I briefly toyed with Kelly Underwood, but that seemed too literal.)
Anyway, this is what America, in its 10th attempt at creating a star, has given us. Those of us who have been around for all 10 seasons might recognize this dynamic. It's season 1's Justin and Kelly. (Raise your hand if you saw the movie From Justin to Kelly. Just me? I had to bribe my then seven-year-old sons to go with me. They were supposed to get a puppy. I welched.) Now, Lauren is nowhere near the vocal powerhouse that is Kelly Clarkson (Kelly performed many a number with a "blown-out" voice), and Scotty could sing oddly to-the-left-listing circles around Justin, but if this were a contest about vocal ability, we'd be watching James and Pia right now instead of the best acts available at the Corn County Fair. Really, is there ever a point in the serious world of music entertainment that calls for a ballerina skirt and cowboy boots? I wore that same outfit when I was 4.
My esteemed editor (and not just because there's a certain book I really, really want to write...) referred to this as the Very Brady American Idol. Clean, pure, harmless. No fire, no sexiness. Beloved by mothers and grandmothers (who wouldn't want their child to come walkin' up the front porch with one of these two cutie-patuties?)-- but they've been singing the SAME SONGS for 3 months. No surprises. They've brought nothing new to the stage--nothing new to the muscial landscape.
Taylor Hicks may have dropped to small-club obscurity, but he was interesting. We'd never heard a voice like Fantasia's before. Even Carrie Underwood and Bo Bice at least set up a nice dichotomy. As did Blake and Jordan. Adam and Kris? Please--downright good vs fabulous. And last year? Didn't you spend the whole season just wondering what Krystal would do? On the bright side, with songs about dreams and moms--can you imagine a more Republican finale?
And, so...it's Scotty and/or Lauren. And of the two, I--like Steven--am giving it to Lauren. I'll never understand the Scotty appeal. (or, uh-peel, as he would say...).
Now, to re-watch David Cook.