AMERICAN IDOL 3
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In the world's ultimate talent search - where the eyes of a nation are upon the best undiscovered singers in the country, where the audience has the power to make or break you, and where a million-dollar recording contract is on the line, there is only one rule: If you can sing it, bring it.

Recaps by Gordon Pepper and Chico Alexander, GSNN


FACT FILE:
Host: Ryan Seacrest
Judges: Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson
Creator: Simon Fuller (based upon "Pop Idol")
EP: Cecile Frot-Coutaz, Simon Fuller
Packager: 19 Entertainment, FremantleMedia North America
Airs: Tuesdays at 8:00pm ET and Wednesdays at 8:30p ET on FOX


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February 4 - The Final 32

Last time out, we cut 117 to 87. This is the final cut, and we will be down to 32. We start the episode of the morning of the group competition. Everyone is confident - except Simon, who says that most of them will forget their lines or sing out of tune - 'a musical car crash'. Simon and Randy remind them to not forget the words -though we know that most of them will.

As the groups, we have Divas in Red, the Ghetto Fab Four, Suburban Funk, and the Bleach Boys. Meanwhile, the Roman twins are in separate groups. We start with "The Aloha Spirit" (Sonny Kapu, Clifford Iokia and Jonah Moananu), who sing 'Out on the Roof', which is a nice way to get it going. Simon called it OK, but Clifford says "For Simon, that's actually good", and he's right.

The Bleach Boys are next, and Michael Keown, one of the members, predicts that he will be one of the top 3. The peroxide must have gotten to his head, as he forgets the words - and John Preator and Matt Metzger don't do much better. Randy equates it to a bad Love Boat trip. Michael reminds them that he has sung better in the past - and not just on this song. Simon replies - "I don't think you will be alone in that sentiment."

He's right, as we get a montage of forgotten words - including Noel Roman, brother of Jesus. Remember Jesus Roman? Well, he said that his team lets him down. Well he was practicing all night - and that wasn't good for him, because he blanked out on his lines, too. Matt and George, meanwhile, nails the lyrics and they look real good - and they make Jesus look real bad. George and Matt are both trying to look younger by wearing hats, which seems to work, while Jesus accuses them of not working, which lead to his own lyric-forgetfulness. Matt's reaction? - "I'm not saying that I had the best performance, but I didn't forget my lines. Where's the group effort in that?" Meow, meow, meow...

We get more people who forget their lyrics, including second time offenders from John Stevens and Terrance Gaines. "If you sang like that in a karaoke bar, they would turn the power off."

Would the women do any better? Well, we are looking for Meleana, as her members are looking for her. They find her - and she immediately walks in the other direction. That's not looking too good for them...

Meanwhile, Elizabteh LeTendre, Dina Lopez, and Leah Vladowski find a mom that they can live with - Leah's mom was a star in Bulgaria, and she choreographs them to make them a huge success. Meanwhile, Meleana, as can be expected, bombs, but she takes her two teammates with her as they all get cut from this round.

An interlude from Simon who says that when he looks out, the audience looks like that they are happy when someone screws up - but then look sympathetic when the cameras are on them. Case in point - Lana, who tries to get out of her reputation - but doesn't when she mangles up her lines and tunes. She admits that she was ad-libbing, and she's as good as gone. Scootergirl gets a good compliment from Randy and she wants to transform herself into a better singer.

But the women aren't perfect either, as we get another montage of bad female singing - including the Divas in red, Lisa Wilson and Jasmine 'small person' Arteaga. And with that taste in their mouths, it's time to cut out 30 more people. Brea Hancock is one of the casualties, as well as Bao Viet, Jasmine Arteaga, Lana Phillips and the ego trip, Michael Keown. But Keown isn't done yet, telling him that he had a great audition in NYC, Simon said that he got that far - and said that today, he didn't stand out. Well, Michael did stand out - but in the wrong way.

So we get to the final performance before they are cut to 32 people. They get one last chance to sing and talk about themselves. Jonah picks 1 - and like every other time, he goes first and does a good job. So does Sarah Silva and Leah, although Simon doesn't like it. Scootergirl sings well - but Randy and Simon are wondering if they can do pop music. Paula tells them to improve her image and I am not getting any good vibes here - though she says if she does get there, she will advance. Erskine Walcott sounds good, and he should advance. Amy Adams delivers another knock-out effort and she should get in.

Marcus Butts, who announced himself before he sang, may have played his way out of the competition, as he seemed a little full of himself. Jennifer Hudson's outfit, according to Simon, 'You are wearing something that you should wrap a turkey in.' When everything was said and done, Simon tells everyone that although the group singing was one of the worst days ever, this group last night may have been one of the best efforts. He leaves them there as the judges deliberate.

For the final cut, the singers are in 3 rooms. 2 of them have singers that will advance, while one of them have singers who will be stopped right there. Room #1 has Matt Rogers, John Stevens, Lisa Wilson, John Peter 'Pen Salesman' Lewis, and the Roman brothers - and they advance, much to the joy and screaming of the crowd.

Room #2 has the trying to look younger George Huff, Sarah Silva, Alan Ritchson, Scootergirl - and they get knocked out. Tell me how you are going to eliminate Scootergirl, someone with the personality and who nailed everything, and keep John Stevens, someone who messed up the lyrics not once, but twice. You can even hear Nicole telling Paula that she did everything that they wanted her to do - and I agree. She got robbed, and I hope that they put her back in on the wild card round.

Room #3 (and we know that they are advancing) includes Amy Adams, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia Barrino and Bri Garcia. They get in and those are your final 32.

You guys come into play next week - where you get the first group of 8 - Fantasia Barrino, Diana DeGarmo, Jennifer Hudson, Marque Lynche, Matthew Metzger, Ashley Thomas, Erskine Walcott and Katie Webber.

We'll see you then, and don't forget to vote!

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