Season 14 of American Idol is well underway, and the fates of this year’s contestants are now in the hands of America. The Top 24 have all performed in Detroit, and it’s time to see who’s advancing and who is heading home.
The first week of the semifinals was a mixed bag in terms of the quality of performances. There were definitely some standouts from both the girls and guys, but even some of the fan-favorites let us down, like Savion Wright.
In terms of predictions, there are some easy calls to make, but there’s still some question marks with a handful of the singers. Let’s take a look at the 12 guys and their chances of performing in the Top 16.
Rayvon Owen: Rayvon has such a smooth tone to his voice, and covering Nick Jonas’ “Jealous” was the right move for him. If the girls don’t love Rayvon after this performance, I don’t know what will get them to. The best part? That falsetto, which was one of the best musical moments of the night. He’s obviously sticking around, and I’m sure we’ll see him in the Top 12 as well.
Nick Fradiani: Both Bill King and I agree that Nick delivered the best performance among the guys. Even though I knew people liked him in previous rounds, he wasn’t really on my radar all that much until now. There were moments where you couldn’t help but get into his performance. He’s guaranteed to advance.
Qaasim Middleton: Qaasim got the pimp spot, which I’m shaking my head at. The judges love him, and I have no doubt that many viewers do too. Me? I just can’t bring myself to liking any of his performances. As I’ve said before, he’s an entertainer first and foremost, and a singer last. I’m a big fan of Bruno Mars and especially of “Uptown Funk,” so to see Qaasim cover this hit, I came away with the impression that he’s an imitator. But my lone voice will be in the minority when the results are announced, and there’s no way he’ll be packing his bags anytime soon.
In the Middle
Adam Ezegelian: A lot of people liked Adam’s “I Wanna Rock” performance that started off the show. And I did too, but I also can’t say he’s a lock for the finals just yet, mainly because I’m not convinced he’s Top 12 material, but we’ll see. If he’s among the top eight guys, the quality of his next performance will be very telling. “I Wanna Rock” was super fun, but can he keep that energy up next time? (And does going first hurt his chances?) If he falters or otherwise doesn’t deliver at the same level as his first semifinal performance, he’ll likely be cut.
Savion Wright: Oh, Savion, why’d you let us down? It’s not that his performance was bad, but we expect more from him. He was cut way too early last season, came back this season better than ever and is a fan-favorite. That will most likely be what saves him this time. But he needs to step it up — I’m rooting for him, and I want him to do well.
Mark Andrew: I really like Mark. He chose a song that suited him well and it felt like a Mark Andrew performance through and through. The reason why I have him In the Middle is because the case can be made that others stood out more than him. And I get that argument, but I think he’s still in a pretty good position to advance.
Quentin Alexander: Quentin had one of my least favorite performances of the night. He was off-pitch quite a bit and this whole theatrical part of him was too much for how underwhelming he actually was. But whereas some of the other singers may be forgettable, it’s hard not to forget him. And that’s the only reason why I think he’ll move on.
Michael Simeon: Coming into the Top 24, he was one of my favorites among the guys; there was something about his voice that I really liked. And I still think he’s got a great voice, but he missed the ball with “How Am I Supposed to Live Without You.” The song choice messed everything up. I would like to see him stick around at least another week to prove himself, and while he might, he’s still in danger. It also doesn’t help that he performed right after the big, upbeat, rockin’ performance by Adam Ezegelian — and with a slower song, no less.
Trevor Douglas: Trevor has never been a favorite of mine. The Gavin DeGraw song did not present any opportunities for him to showcase who he is as an artist — this just wasn’t him at all. It seemed like the girls in the audience loved him — could that save him? Maybe, but it’s not looking good.
Clark Beckham: Clark’s performance wasn’t bad, but neither was it fantastic. The amazing moments that I did hear is why I want him to have another shot. But four are heading home, so the areas where he stumbled (like his lower register) could be his downfall.
Daniel Seavey: Those of us who follow American Idol closely and have a good grasp on whether a singer is ready for this competition or not know that Daniel should not even be in the Top 24. He’s getting by on the cute factor alone. That’s it. Listening to his voice on “I’m Yours,” he hasn’t made any improvements (and his stage presence seemed off) — he really should have waited a couple years or so before auditioning because maybe then his voice would be mature enough to handle Idol. I hope he’s eliminated because I think we can all agree that would be for the best, but I have this feeling he’ll perform again.
Definitely Going Home
Riley Bria: In previous rounds, there have been moments I’ve really liked Riley’s voice. But on “Homeboy,” there needed to be more depth and grit, and his voice might not be capable of that — at least based on what we’ve heard so far. His Top 24 performance also felt a little bland to me, and I don’t think he had a firm grasp on what he wanted to accomplish.
Who do you think will go home? Are any of the fan favorites in danger? Share your predictions in the comments section below.
American Idol airs Wednesdays and Thursdays at 8pm on FOX.
(Image courtesy of FOX)
Staff Writer, BuddyTV
Jeff Dodge, a graduate of Western Washington University, has been a TV news editor for many years and has had the chance to interview multiple reality show stars, including Randy Jackson, Nick Cannon, Heidi Klum, Mel B and John Cena.