“American Idol” goes to Dollywood


It’s been a long time coming, but Dolly Parton finally stepped into the American Idol arena last night as a mentor. Though I was a little uncertain about how well the contestants would handle her collection of music, I was excited for a never-before-done theme. Dolly was fun and bubbly and encouraging and absolutely everything an Idol mentor should be.

One of my favorites, Brooke White (along with a bluegrass band), opened the show with “Jolene” and failed to impress the judges. I admit I wasn’t completely blown away either, but I thought it was a solid performance. She’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

Ramiele Malubay sang “Do I Ever Cross Your Mind,” and for the first time in several weeks, I feel like she chose the right song and sang it well. Simon Cowell, however, didn’t like it and called her performance “forgettable.” (Is anyone surprised? He uses this insult every week.)


One of the things I was most excited about for Dollyweek was seeing if anyone would sing “Travelin’ Thru,” the theme song from the 2005 movie Transamerica. And while I thought it was going to come from one of the girls, I was pleasantly surprised at Jason Castro‘s rendition. If you’re interested, you can watch it here. I believe this was my favorite performance of his thus far. Good for you, Jason!

At this point, however, you can forget about all other performances of the night, because Carly Smithson stole the show. Simon may have disagreed, but who really cares about that anyway? This was the breakout diva performance I had been looking for from her, and it came in the form of “Here You Come Again.” Here’s the video:

If Brooke isn’t careful, she might get replaced at the top of my personal list of favorites (which we all know is the deciding factor in the competition).

Now, for those three of you who have been keeping up with my Idol posts, this next sentence will be as shocking for you to read as it is for me to write: Kristy Lee Cook was good. She was actually good. No, really! This isn’t a belated April Fool’s joke; see for yourself:

Impressive (for Cook), no?

Syesha Mercado rounded it out for the women with a performance of “I Will Always Love You” that blended Dolly’s version with the Whitney Houston take on it. Because of that vocal, she will be hanging around for at least one more week. (Random note to Syesha: Yellow is definitely your color, girl!)

As for the results tonight, I really have no clue who could be going home. The three men I haven’t mentioned thus far (Michael Johns, David Archuletaand David Cook) all had incredibly solid performances, which leads me to believe we will see the departure of a female tonight. Ramiele? Kristy Lee? I really don’t know; what do you think?

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