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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 Chico Alexander, Jason Block, Don Harpwood & Gordon Pepper, GSNN

Ryan Seacrest
Judges: Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson
Creator: Simon Fuller (based upon "Pop Idol")
Nigel Lythgoe, Ken Warwick, Cecile Frot-Coutaz, Simon Fuller
Packager: 19 TV, FremantleMedia North America
Origin: CBS Television City, Los Angeles, CA
Airs: Tuesdays at 8pm ET and Wednesdays at 9p ET on Fox


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Round of 2 - Coronation Round: Results
May 21

Chico: The American Idol finale. We've been here six times before, but never with the amount of fervor and enthusiasm as this one...
Jason: The biggest, baddest finale of them all.
Chico: The show to end all shows.
Don: The big daddy.
Chico: In two hours, one young man... either David Cook or David Archuleta... will drink the ambrosia of fame from the holy grail of music.
Jason: So we have two hours of filler for a two second reveal.
Chico: Basically
Don: Pretty much, yeah.
Chico: But it'll be entertaining filler... We hope.
Jason: I will be flipping for the first hour between this and Price.
Chico: Same here. Commercials are good.
Don: Ditto.
Chico: Okay, it's finale time.
Jason: 2 guys in white.
Chico: Mexican standoff.
Jason: Who look like they are going to paint... their wallets with gold
Chico: And it is showtime. Welcome to the Showdown Downtown.
Jason: Sing off at the Nokia Theater.
Chico: Last night... 97.5 million votes, a new record.
Don: Whoa!
Chico: One David... 56%. The other... 44%. So it wasn't THAT close. We're going to KC with Mikalah Gordon... and the guy from "Really Big Things" is in SLC. You know... the guy. Matt "Big Sexy" Rogers. We kick things off with the group sing... and some of the contestants from last year's SYTYCD... which starts tomorrow. $PLUG$.
Jason: Singing "Get Ready"
Chico: Funny thing... I don't recognize ANY of them. Janice Dickinson... I do recognize.
Jason: Me neither
Chico: Okay, the first break, and now we're going to get the lengthy prediction from... Jason, let's start with you. Should, will, and why.
Jason: Should win: David Archuleta. He outsang David Cook. Will Win: David Cook. He was the more consistent and creative performer over all. Chico?
Chico: I happen to agree. It's the marathon runner vs. the sprinter. Should, Archuleta. Will, Cook. Although I was a mite disappointed with last night's choices on the Cook end.
Jason: Me too. David Cook sings.
Chico: The song, "Hero" by Chad Kroeger. Archuleta joins in.
Jason: BTW...on Price...a Jaguar XF offered in 3 Strikes.
Chico: Yikes.
Don: Wow.
Jason: Not an XK, an XF
Chico: Now we have a plug for "The Love Guru".... I'd rather be watching Three Strikes right now. The Davids got to see the movie first. ... and meet the Guru (Mike Myers) playing "Sitar Hero".
Don: Cute.
Jason: cute
Chico: "Winning isn't everything, unless you're one of the last two finalists on American Idol... then it's the only thing."
Jason: Filler.
Chico: And here's more of the Guru Pitka... I want to see Indiana Jones that much more now.
Jason: And Mike Myers on Price...A Shrek Pinball Machine.
Chico: Shrek... AND pinball. Nice. He predicts that the winner will be a US citizen aged 16-28 that is not an employee of Fox... named David.
Jason: ROFL
Chico: Continuing with the music...
Don: LOL
Chico: Syesha Mercado takes the stage with "Waiting For You". And we're instantly reminded of why she was voted off in the first place. Luckily, Seal's here to save us.
Jason: Damn you, Heidi Klum!
Chico: Those two made a caramel-colored dual citizenship baby.
Jason: Range Game player $2.
Chico: Yikes. MDG yet?
Jason: Not yet.
Chico: K. Alright, continuing with the prognostications... Don? Should, will, why. Go.
Don: Alright.  I agree that Archuleta should win, especially after last night's performances.  But I'm thinking that Archuleta will win, because from what I've seen in past seasons, the person going second usually wins.
Chico: Next up, a man who can sing better than he can talk...
Jason: Hallelujah by Jason Castro. Yawn.
Chico: $5 says he's high right now.
Jason: Million Dollar Game.
Chico: Is...
Jason: Cover Up. Get them all right in the first shot.
Chico: Ford Video next, the song, "Let the Good Times Roll"
Jason: Oh boy.
Jason: He didn't get the million.
Jason: Dumbass.
Chico: At least he didn't bid $2 million.
Don: lol
Chico: Okay, back to the Davids now. I'm guessing we have cars for them. They do.
Jason: Which ones?
Chico: Two Ford Escape Hybrids.
Don: Sweet.
Chico: One for Cook..
Jason: Of course....being eco-friendly and all.
Chico: And one for Archuleta.
Jason: You think he has a permit...Archuleta that is?
Chico: I've been told he has a license. Now to the ladies, with a Donna Summer medley, starting with "She Works Hard for the Money", then going into "Hot Stuff".
Jason: WTF is Overmeyer doing?
Chico: "Reminding us all why she's not in the top 2... les we forget. And here with "Stamp Your Feet"... the woman herself.
Jason: She rocks! With the diva bedazzled mike.
Chico: I betcha she had that specially made for tonight.
Don: Looks like Ryan tried to dance.
Chico: That's... wrong. Ryan can only do two things properly: Host and look presentable.
Jason: And the song that ends every wedding, bar mitzvah and Prom now.
Chico: "The Last Dance"?
Jason: It's called "Last Dance".
Chico: I'm having flashbacks to the GSW prom.
Jason: Is she a little off key?
Chico: And there's Syesha to inherit the diva mic.
Jason: WOO!
Chico: And to answer your question, Block.. yes. Idol continues.... And Morgan Freeman narrating ANYTHING = win. Carrie Underwood with a DS.... also win.
Jason: COmmercials.
Chico: Right.
Jason: Wasnt Liv Tyler with one?
Chico: I don't know. Didn't see one. And we're going to the shock departure department with "The Letter" from Carly Smithson and Michael Johns. Think we'll see a record from these two? (the old one doesn't count)
Jason: I hope so. If Ace Young can star on Bones...they can do a record.
Chico: That's a nice suit. I must takes note on it. Now... a review of the season from Jimmy Kimmel...
Jason: ouch
Chico: Damn. "The culmination of 19 weeks of karaoke singing." Ryan - all his primping = Chris Sligh, and Paula sees actual performances no one sees.
Jason: He is not funny.
Chico: Simon's critiques put to music... isn't that darn funny. Now we welcome the top 6 guys and their rock medley. Starting with "Summer of '69"
Jason: Heaven
Chico: Ah, the Bryan Adams medley.
Jason: Think he might be there?
Chico: Hope so. Otherwise, what's the point?
Don: Wouldn't you know it...
Jason: Speak of the devil.
Chico: .. and he appears. He's cleaned up some. "I Thought I've Seen Everything"... Followed by "I Need Somebody". And there's Bo as we head to break.... and to TPIR. That's a nice boat there.
Jason: Thats a NICE boat indeed.
Chico: I'll bid $50,000... and Eccho's a cutie.
Don: I think the Canadian feed is behind; I haven't seen the boat yet. (sees it) Oh, there it is.  Very nice!
Chico: Viper Showcase. $75,000
Jason: DAMN!
Chico: AT LEAST.
Jason: 100,000
Chico: Now to Jordin Sparks in DisneyWorld and The American Idol Experience... Back to the show, with David Cook and ZZ Top. They're singing "Sharp-Dressed Man". Okay, a recap of the last hour... The top 4 sang individually... The top 12 sang as a group... The guys sang.. .the girls sang... we saw a sweet boat, a sweet Viper, and Eccho winning $109,069. Including a freaking Viper. A sweeter ride if I ever saw one.
Jason: And her total ended in 69 LOL
Chico: going back to KC where Mikalah Gordon is with Cook's music teacher... She feels good. "The flowers are faded, but I'll have these memories forever." Next, Brooke White and Graham Nash with "Teach Your Children". No, you can't start over again. :)
Jason: rofl
Don: Heh.
Chico: I'm guessing that's where they got the PG rating. From that one lyric.
Jason: What Lyric?
Chico: "Their father's hell will slowly go by." Very nice.
Jason: Is that Coldplay shilling for Apple?
Chico: Yep
Jason: Hypocrites =p
Chico: Yeah yeah.. (Sex and the City commercial) Jennifer Hudson's in that movie, eh...
Jason: Is that David Cook in the Guitar Hero commercial?
Chico: ... and apparently Cook likes playing Guitar Hero in his underwear.
Jason: Was that him seriously?
Chico: Either that was him or the actor has been doing his homework
Jason: The Jonas Brothers are next. Singing SOS
Chico: And the mosh pit goes nuts.
Jason: Yup.
Chico: I'm having flashbacks to the Next Great American Band.
Jason: ROFL
Chico: And it's not because of the set... ... actually, yes it is. And now, the montage of the bad.
Jason: Oh no.
Chico: Oh yes.
Don: Oh, boy...
Jason: I remember Alexis -
Chico: I remember her two middle fingers.
Jason: Actressing. And James Lewis.
Chico: Known for his deep voice and deeper dental work.
Jason: Here we go!
Chico: And Renaldo "I Am Your Brother" Lapuz
Don: How can we forget this one!
Jason: OH no!
Chico: And our friend... our brother... our best friend forever... performing live!
Jason: He is better than Castro! With the USC Trojan Marching band
Don: Nice.
Chico: Altogher now...
Jason: GONG!
Chico: "I am your brother! Your best friend forever!"
Jason: (puts arm around you)
Chico: "Singing songs that music can't deny. Brothers 'til the end of time. You're always be in my heart!" Okay, that's enough out of you.
Jason: And Paula and Randy dance and gets cut off! My dad is watching and said he has seen everything...but there is always something new and horrifying. The Moment of Truth is back!
Chico: You can't wait for that. I'm getting a text from Gordon... "Having fun yet?" Yeah, big fun. Idol's back on with "Apologize" from OneRepublic. The original version, not the Timbaland remix. And here's David Archuleta singing with them. Open your eyes, dude. Going to Salt Lake City with Matt Rogers now and Archie's grandparents... He calls this a wonderful opportunity. That's... that's scary. Grandfather Idol. Right now, though, with "One Step At a Time", fresh off of medical leave... the reigning American Idol... Jordin Sparks.
Jason: With very straight hair.
Chico: I notice a teleprompter.
Jason: Her voice is a little off...but I am not going to bitch.
Chico: Shouldn't. She's been on rest. It's a miracle that she's even doing this. Show's back on. ... and we have Gladys Knight and ... some old Pips.
Jason: Is that Robert Downey Jr, Jack Black and Ben Stiller?
Chico: Yes. Yes. And yes. They're interspliced with some footage from The Flip Wilson Show.
Jason: Shilling Tropic Thunder right? Or whatever that movie is.
Chico: or something.
Jason: You know which movie I am talking about.
Chico: I think so, yeah. Bit of a drop from Iron Man.
Jason: Downey plays a white actor playing a black guy.
Chico: ... they're slowly disappearing...... never mind
Don: lol
Chico: Can we get to the results now? Guess not. We have to hear Carrie Underwood with "Last Name" now .... Can I have some of that?
Jason: Get in Line big boy. I got the vapors.
Chico: (Meg) She's closer to my age, you old cow! (/Meg)
Jason: My TV is melting.
Chico: Okay, over the course of the season, we've seen Ruben.... We've seen Carrie... We've seen Jordin... but nothing from the other three Idols.
Jason: Fantasia. We saw last week
Chico: Oh. I was at work
Jason: In Top 3 show.
Chico: My bad. What about Taylor and Kelly.
Jason: Taylor no. Kelly.. wasn't she on Idol Gives Back?
Chico: Might've been... missed that, too. And in the commercial break, because we have equal time laws...
Jason: LOL!
Chico: Here's David Archuleta in his underwear.
Jason: I think that's very cool that they both got paid to do that. But I didn't need to see him in his boxers.
Chico: We're about 15 minutes away from results. First, though, the top 12 sing again. "Faith"
Jason: George Michael perhaps? Since he is touring?
Chico: Yep. Next, "Father Figure". Ladies and gentlemen... Men in Black, the Musical.. All we need now is the alien.
Jason: And Will Smith.
Chico: "Freedom" is next. And Ramiele finally gets camera time. ... and here's the alien! George Michael! He looks a little bit... oldish. Am I the only one that finds these two hours excruciating?
Don: Well, it is basically a lot of filler, so...
Chico: I mean, we have a few good performances... and then there're the rest of the top 12 reminding us why they're where they are... and the Davids are where THEY are. Results... Finally... NEXT.
Jason: Finally!
Don: Feeling tense now...
Chico: Final thoughts from the judges. Randy thought this was the strongest year by far. Paula is honored and proud to be sitting here. "It's anything but final." Simon congratulates both. He apologizes to Cook, thinking he was too harsh. "You're triers. For the first time ever, I don't really care who wins. I think you've both done terrific." We have the results in hand now. Certified and verified for accuracy as always... We go to Ryan...

"Ladies and gentlemen... David and David... the winner by 12 million votes of American Idol 2008 is... David... COOK!"

Chico: They're dancing in the streets of Kansas City tonight! David Cook is the new American Idol! Words from the new American Idol. "I started this season as a word nerd. I am at a loss for words right now." And to his brother.. "This is all your fault!" David Cook takes us out with the coronation single, "Time of My Life".... will be available for download shortly...
Don: I think it's nice to see a rocker win it this year.
Chico: This was the winning song in the AI Songwriter... I agree Don. Okay, final thoughts, Don Harpwood.
Don: This has been one heck of a season, and I've enjoyed it pretty much the whole way.  And congrats to David C.!
Chico: Final thoughts, Jason Block?
Jason: First of all, Congrats to David Archuleta on a great season. But I am glad to see David Cook win this. Both of them are going to do very well.
Chico: No doubt about that. Okay, going live to Gordon Pepper for his final thoughts...
Gordon: I think that you could've made an argument for either guy to win it this season. I thought David Archuleta clearly outperformed David Cook last night. However, it was clear that David Cook had all the momentum going into the final, and David Archuleta had to sing lights out in order to have a shot. He did, yet, was still not enough and there was way too much momentum behind Cook. Almost identical to a basketball game where one team outscores the other by 20 in the second half but were down 35 at the break. I thought that both Davids deserved to win American Idol, and that David Cook's win was well-deserved. Congratulations to David Cook. And even though my original pick didn't win, the fact that my two finalists predicted pre-top 24 came in second and third is not too shabby.
Chico: Thanks, Gordon. As always, a pleasure working with you, Jason, and Don this year. Well, we started with 100,000, had a few twists and turns, but we arrived at, in my humble opinion, the two best undiscovered singers in the land... America, congratulations.. You finally got it right.
Jason: Yes you did.
Chico: Both of them are going to go on to bigger and better things... And we can't wait to see what will happen from here on out. This is the end of the show for us, but for David Cook... AND David Archuleta... it's only a beginning.
Jason: And we do it all again in a few months for the auditions.
Chico: My thanks to Jason Block, Gordon Pepper, and Don Harpwood for their gracious insight as always.
Jason: Thank you.
Chico: Don, you got the Canadian version in the summer, I take it?
Don: Yep.
Chico: Alright. Can't wait for that. Thanks for reading. I'm Chico Alexander saying until January... Go out and spread the love, America!
Jason: And the Music.