All three did their respective things very well tonight, which makes it hard to predict who will be in the finale. Nobody left the door open, nobody gave voters a reason to leave them out, they all accentuated their appealing features, and they all won the favor of the judges and the live audience. Excellently played all around.
Paula and the producers did Blake huge favors with the songs they chose for him. He couldn’t have been more different from Jordin and Melinda, and he couldn’t have felt more fresh next to their stale old performances, impressive though they may be. Blake stands out both for his artistry and for his being plugged in to the contemporary vibe. Far more than the ladies he resembles what seems to be on MTV and youth-oriented (non-oldies, non-“lite”) radio these days. And to me he stood out as the only potential pop star. He’s got it all. He doesn’t have real impressive singing chops, but chops aren’t that important.
Still, there’s no denying the unique skill and appeal of the ladies. There’s never been a more consistently excellent vocalist than Melinda and for the voters who think this should be a vocal competition, there is no choice but her. And maybe a little like Taylor Hicks, she’s a contestant in whom the over forty set can see a bit of themselves.
And Jordin, like I’ve said before, is peppy and polished and has amazing teeth. She’s the contestant with whom the teen set can identify. Or do kids get annoyed by pep, too?
Like last week, I think Blake will benefit from being the different one, add to that that he was actually really good this week and I think he’s the safest bet, though I wouldn’t bet much.
Between Jordin and Melinda, it’s a toss up. Since I chose Jordin as the winner back in week 2, I’ll stick with that pick. And I predict that at least one judge’s head will explode when it is announced that Melinda is eliminated.