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The Buzz with CCX - Season 18 Episode 12


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I'd rather skip the alcohol and just inject a painkiller directly into my kneecap, but I'm going with vodka and a rather bad cranberry-lime seltzer. Ryan tells us that they will be coming to us from the judges', contestants, and his home; 25 locations in all. Wait, 20 contestants, 3 judges, 1 Seacrest...a miscount? ...Nah, we probably have to account for Bobby Bones as well. We're reminded that there was a vote between two contestants, but we're not going to find out which one of them's in just yet. In fact we're not even cutting to another member of the Top 20. But then we do--it's time for Francisco. We immediately get an unaired performance from auditions; "Use Somebody". We get reminded that they said he was "Top Ten", probably "Top Five". We shall see. But first, we're going to see another unaired performance, an original song. Luke definitely seems to feel Francisco should be the winner.


Next in the "auditioners not in the Top 20" is Kyle Tanguay, Philadelphia Eagles cheerleader. He made it to Hollywood, but not much further. Now it's time for Kimmy Gabriela. Her audition was, of course, great. As was her Hollywood performance of "Say Something". And her duet performance of "Stay". She feels like she's having trouble living up to the standard the judges have for her. But her final performance of Hollywood was, of course, great. I'm not so sure about her Hawaii showcase, but she''s definitely worthy of the judges' praise. She might have trouble living up to all the hype, though.


And we've got a montage of Luke fans...oh, to segue into Dewayne Crocker Jr., whose great grandmother is a huge Lionel Richie fan. I forgot about DeWayne. Oh, his biological dad hasn't been in his life...well, okay, yeah, the math says that great-grandma was only 55 when he was born. That's an average of teenage parents over three generations. DeWayne dedicated his Genre performance to great-grandma. My mom says she doesn't remember seeing any of DeWayne's performances; she's convinced he hasn't been shown at all. You only told me twice that your first dance with Dad at your wedding was a Lionel Richie song in response to hearing about his great-grandma's story, Mom! Also, they showed all of the Top 20's showcases. Most of the other Top 40, too.


Reminder of how big American Idol is on social media. Here's Courtney Timmons, who just kind of showed up at the audition site not realizing there were preliminaries and just slayed it on "Rise Up". It looked like she made it to duets? Oh, my g-d, Faith Becnel was in a rock band at age 10. A bunch of 10 year olds. She was the lone girl. It's adorable! We're seeing in the audition, Katy was feeling it right away, but Lionel said no...ah, yeah, it was very close. And then she wound up in the Top 20. Her genre performance was unseen, and it's good! The performances we actually saw from her, they weren't that great. Still, there's hope in there, which there wasn't before. Which is to say, this is my rocker chick for the year?


Jarred Lettow and his yodeling is our next reminder. I could've done without that one, but here's Dillon James. Rewind effect. Home video of 6-year-old Dillon singing karaoke to Smash Mouth's "All Star". And we get an unseen performance from auditions: "Gunsmoke", an original. Oh, I get it now! Back when he did his solo in Hollywood, I heard "tierra doce", which I translated as "Earth 12". But it was Tierra Dulce--"Sweet Earth". That makes more sense.


Kat and Alex (aka Space Cowboy). Neither made it to top 40. Aliana Jester is up now, and we're reminded she brought a support animal to the auditions. Ah, yes, I remember her story now. She had seemed like one of the more anonymous ones in Top 40. Unseen performance time. I could have done without it, and I think her dog agreed with me. Also, it wasn't until the chorus that I even realized that I knew the song she was singing, it was so unrecognizable. Okay, she's taken the mantle of "least deserving Top 20" away from Faith. And in the solo round, she committed Idol's cardinal sin: covering Kelly Clarkson. "Because of You". It was...passable, I guess? She made it safe, which isn't really good but at least avoids a disaster. She'll likely be gone soon, I'm sure.


The comically oversized s'mores cookout that a shirtless contestant interrupted. And then Louis Knight's original song, "Change", in his audition. He's been in Philly for 9 years--so since he was 10. His parents say he's got a new song every week. And then an unseen performance, not an original. I agree that his Hawaii showcase wasn't great, but he was so good going up until then. Of course, they're still playing Castle on the Hill. It's almost obligatory; Katy may have gotten "Harry Styles on X Factor" vibes in Hollywood, but he's obviously the next Ed Sheeran. As we go to commercial, we get a video message from Season 16's Gabby Barrett and Cade Foehner, now married.


Reminder of Katy being weird at the Oregon auditions, and then it's on to Jovin Webb and his stellar audition performance of "Whipping Post". His mother died in 2012 and he took it really hard. But then he became a father, and his son Javin pulled him out of his funk. Speaking of which, the weather forecast says there's going to be about a week of rain. My joints are not happy about this.


Reminder that Katie's pregnant. Segue into the girl who brought a rather large extended family, 17-year-old Cyniah Elise. Video of Cyniah singing in church at age 2. Not bad for a 2-year-old. And damn good in the present day too!


And finally, we get to find out who got the 20th spot. Grace gets the spotlight first; she of the American Juniors appearance. Unseen performance, wonderful. She's in tears in her interview. The judges' comments in Hawaii suggested that they loved her. Lauren's turn. She's got a crazy awesome Nana who's her biggest fan. Also she's got a fiance who's like twice her age. We're reminded of her original song from Hollywood, "God Made A Woman". See, they're both amazing! Why couldn't we have both of them and get rid of Aliana or Faith (or better still, Nick Merico)? The Hawaii Showcase wasn't it, though, so Grace was my pick. And back to Ryan's living room...and Lauren's, and Grace's. On remote! And the 20th member of the Top 20 is...Grace Leer. They're both really sweet.



Edited by ScarletDevilCCX
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