Looks like we're in for a Crystal Bowersox/Lee DeWyze finale.
Long-shot Casey James didn't deliver any surprises on Tuesday's top three episode of "American Idol." The episode had each contestant sing two songs: one they chose, one selected by the judges.
For his own pick, James opted for "OK, It's Alright With Me," a relatively obscure song by Eric Hutchinson. The judges' pick, John Mayer's "Daughters," was boring and again didn't do much to showcase his vocals.
Bowersox, meanwhile, sang Melissa Etheridge's "Come To My Window" and Paul McCartney's "Maybe I'm Amazed." Blame it on "Idol" fatigue, but MamaSox seemed a little lackluster Tuesday night. She didn't appear as vocally "on" as she was earlier this season. Then again, she's still the most consistent singer of the bunch.
So that means Lee DeWyze won the night. Note how there's no exclamation point at the end of that sentence. Lee's own song selection, Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Simple Man," was gritty and emotional -- easily the strongest effort of the night.
But Simon Cowell's song choice for Lee, "Hallelujah," just reeked of judges' manipulation. Lee closed the show with "Hallelujah" and was accompanied by a gospel choir. It sounded fine, but I think the judges were much too enthusiastic in their praise. Ellen DeGeneres deemed it stunning, and Kara DioGuardi said, "You are what this show is all about."
Really?!? I kind of just thought it was an overdone song, a decent vocal and a "vote for Lee" gospel choir.
Here's how I'd rank Tuesday's performances:
1. Lee DeWyze, "Simple Man"
2. Crystal Bowersox, "Maybe I'm Amazed"
3. Lee DeWyze, "Hallelujah"
4. Crystal Bowersox, "Come To My Window"
5. Casey James, "OK, It's Alright With Me"
6. Casey James, "Daughters"