momlogic's Vivian: With no clear front runner this year, "American Idol" is anyone's game -- except Mike Lynche's. Just as I predicted yesterday, Big Daddy Mike said his final goodbye on "Idol" last night -- but he sure didn't go quietly!
Interspersed between live performances from former "Idols" Fantasia and Daughtry and hair-rock stalwarts Bon Jovi (who are looking more like middle-aged drag queens with each passing day), Casey was the first to be declared safe -- which was somewhat of a surprise, because his mellow, folksy take on the Simon & Garfunkel classic "Mrs. Robinson" only earned him a metza-metza response from the judges. Lee had also gotten mixed reviews about his take on Seal's "Kiss From a Rose" the previous evening, yet he was the second to be put out of his misery -- leaving Crystal and Mike (who are really good friends, mind you) to idle by the gallows pole.
At that point, it was pretty clear who was going home, and the look of resignation on Lynche's face said it all. Ryan asked Simon just how Crystal had "redeemed herself" the night before, and Simon responded, "It was just overall a much better performance. I thought the last two weeks before that were just OK. I think this was the artist we fell in love with a few weeks ago. I meant what I said last night: You're back in the game."
Finally Crystal was declared safe. Talk about a gracious exit: Big Mike waved goodbye like he'd expected it, as the camera panned to his wife tearing up. When asked how he felt -- especially after having been saved by the judges five weeks prior -- he said, "Unbelievable! I just sit here right now and think I wasn't even supposed to be here. Thank God the judges saved me and I got to spend more time here and be here with the people, perform before my wife .... It's all good, man!" Cut to the exit montage of Mike and a great quote from him summing up his "Idol" experience: "It's amazing that my little girl will be able to see that Dad was trying to be something so that she can have a better life." You GO, Big Daddy!
When Ryan asked Kara to give Mike advice, she said, "Do not stop. Write great songs, record great songs and above all, go out and sing your heart out every night. Keep gigging, because you've got it in you." Somebody best snag that man right quick, because I'm TELLING you: He could do really well in R&B if he plays his cards right.
His adieu redo of "Will You Be There" (from "Free Willy") was FIERCE. He squeezed the very most out of each final second on that stage -- and got a standing ovation from the judges and audience (which was INCREDIBLY well-deserved). He got hugs from the judges, too -- even Simon!
Two men and a lady are left .... Will our MamaSox grab the crown? Tune in to "American Idol" next Tuesday -- and come here next Wednesday for the recap!