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March 3

So how did we manage all of this in one week:  the second-shortest singing performance ever, the worst project manager ever, more Ambbuhhhhh and Rob, and my "Idol" scorecard actually panning out decently?


The Week That Was… 


On "The Apprentice"...

Wow.  How self-unaware can you be?   Tara did absolutely everything wrong in last week's task…coming up with the concept before ever speaking to anyone, infusing her own opinions in the ad without bothering to check to see if they were needed/valid, and then using "I" about forty times while pitching the ad.


I was very impressed by Stephanie post-boardroom.  I hope what she did with her team after returning was genuine.  It certainly – at least for now – changed my opinion of her.  And obviously it helped bring that team together from what looked like was total self-destruction.


I've got no pick for tonight's show…I think we've gone to a 'neutral' point and need to see someone stand out one way or the other.


On "American Idol"…
I don't believe it.  I actually got three of the four right who got voted off.  Not in the scoring, mind you…but in my actual picks.  My guys' top 5 didn't change at all this week:


1. Bo Bice
2. Mario Vazquez
3. Anwar Robinson
4. Nikko Smith
5. Scott Savol


Among the eliminated, Joe was #6 on my list (but I did pick him to be eliminated) and David was #9 (also picked to be eliminated).  Constantine and Travis need to step it up or they won't make the top six, in my opinion.


The girls are a lot harder to pick.  Virtually everyone moved around in the rankings.  Here are my top 5 from last week and top 5 after two weeks:


            AFTER WEEK 1                                  AFTER WEEK 2

1.         Carrie Underwood                              Jessica Sierra

2.         Nadia Turner                                      Nadia Turner

3.         Jessica Sierra                                       Carrie Underwood

4.         Aloha Mischeaux                                Mikalah Gordon

5.         Vonzell Solomon                                   Lindsey Cardinale


My two picks to go were Celena (#9) and Janay (#10).  So obviously, I got one right, and missed one.  I did have Aloha in eighth (yes, after being fourth in week 1). 


No one on the girls' side has been consistent, so it's hard to say who'll go next week.


On "Survivor"...

So surprised by Angie.  She really came through for her tribe in the reward challenge.  There really haven't been new surprises.  Ashlee was ready to go home…and thus she did.  We'll see if a spark comes this week.


On "The Amazing Race"...

You read in the first InSites of this new series that I am a huge fan of "The Amazing Race."  Susan & Patrick make the best mother/son team ever.  Megan & Heidi look a little too much like Paris & Nicole in their publicity photo for my liking.  But anyway…this is already shaping up to be a great series (no shocker there).  It's too early to pick anything, but my early favorite is, as you already guessed, Susan & Patrick.

Odds and Ends…
Shocker on Ultimate Jeopardy!:  Leszek Pawlowicz didn't make it past his first-round match.  It's become definitely clear to me that the 'old' players are having a tough time with the 'new' money structure.  Because of how big the money is, you really can't take as many wild guesses…or you'll fall in the hole, or out of contention.  (See Jeff Richmond's competitors for details.)  This is the main reason why Ken Jennings is the frontrunner in the final from the start – not because he's smarter, or even a better player, but because he's SO versed in the skill of the increased money system (even if it did bite him in the rear on his last show too). 


This week, we saw the second-shortest TV musical performance ever.  The shortest was the Ashlee Simpson band-played-the-wrong-song/had-acid-reflux/ghost-of-Jessica-was-haunting-me performance on "Saturday Night Live."  The second shortest was Jenny Farrell on this week's "Nashville Star."  After a really great few opening seconds, Farrell began to feel sick, said "Excuse me" and ran off the stage.  Farrell was ill and an apparent combination of food poisoning and nerves was too much to handle.  Jenny's a hometown girl…born in Nashville...and moved back to attempt a singing career. 


Farrell does have her own website (, and although she doesn't go into great detail there, she did call her performance "one of the most embarrassing moments of my life."


Here's the odd part…the show we saw Tuesday night was taped THREE WEEKS ago…on February 10th.  So, if America (or at least the USA Network cable viewers) finds it in their heart to let Jenny sing on next week…it'll have been a month since the original performance…definitely over any illness, and maybe a competition front-runner.  Check out some of her music on her website…good stuff!

What You Should Be Watching…
The aforementioned "Nashville Star."  You can say it's because the competitors are older and more experienced, or that they've already been working hard in the music business… but the contestants on "Star" are, on the whole, better than their "American Idol" counterparts.  And this opinion comes from a guy who isn't much of a fan of country music.  But I wouldn't miss "Nashville Star."  You might even find me at a taping later this season.

The opinions expressed in InSites are those of the author only, and do not represent the opinions of any other person, organization, or entity.
Jason Elliott can be reached at


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