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Why Triston Lost


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Posted (edited)

Last night, the Top Five sang two songs that were in Disney films or Disney media films, and two contestants fell short of the finale.  One of them was Triston Harper.  A lot of people thought that he would win early on, but I wasn’t so sure, thinking that because he was only 15, he would fall short at the end.  So why did my assessment prove to be correct?  A glance at the rules that American idol contestants need to follow will explain what Triston did right, what he did wrong and why Triston lost.

 

The first rule states that contestants must show singing and performing talent.  At first, Triston was successful in showing his talent, being seen as good on IDF on his first two songs, but after the Top 14 reveal, he began to enter a downward spiral and quickly fell to the back of the pack.  I believe that this is because the live shows began to expose his inexperience with performing on stage.  By the time of his final two performances, IDF had him at the back of the pack, as did I.

 

So how did his final two performances go?  I actually gave Triston a 7 for “Almost There”, saying that this was his best performance in some time.  Sadly, his second song, “Life Is a Highway”, was pretty much panned by everyone on IDF, including me. I gave him a 5.5 and thought that he was mediocre at best.  Others thought that he was a train wreck on that song.  Thus it’s clear that Triston struck out on this rule.

 

He didn’t do a lot better with the second rule, which states that song choice is key.  His choice of “Almost There” was so unusual that I thought he’d have a train wreck and was pleasantly surprised to see that it wasn’t a train wreck after all.  And “Life Is a Highway” is just too predictable for country singers.  Thus Triston fouled up this rule as well.

 

Triston also had problems with the third rule, which states that contestants must be either consistently great or consistently improving.  Triston was only good at the beginning and then he went into that downward spiral, thus not improving and in fact going backwards.  Meanwhile, Abi was great, Jack was consistently improving and even Will was consistently good.  Thus Triston screwed up this rule as well.

 

At least Triston did okay with the fourth rule, which states that contestants must be confident.  Triston didn’t fall apart like Blake or even Mia did, even if he spiraled downward as the show went on, so I’ll move on.

 

Triston also did well with the fifth rule, which states that contestants must have a strong, current and marketable artistic identity.  Triston is a country singer, and country music is current and marketable enough that Triston will be fine in the future, but his inexperience means that he needs time to grow.  Still, Triston followed this rule for the most part, so I’ll move on as well.

 

Triston’s biggest success was with the sixth rule, which states that contestants must remember that they are a package.  Not only was Triston a country singer, he had a tragic backstory that tugged at hearts and probably got him farther than he should have.  While the package gradually unraveled enough for people to see he was too inexperienced, at least he followed this rule.

 

Triston also followed the seventh rule, which states that contestants must take advice offered to them and follow it — within reason.  While it didn’t save him from elimination, at least he had no problem with this rule.

 

The final rule states that contestants must gather and sustain a fan base.  Triston’s country identity and tragic backstory helped him get a lot of fans early on, but he gradually lost the more casual fans with his declining performances.  Meanwhile Will, his closest competitor in the country genre, was consistently good and thus was able to keep more fans and gain more country fans.  Also, Jack was improving and Abi was killing her performances, and both were also gaining more fans.  Thus Triston struggled with this rule in the end.

 

Triston began well.  He had a strong, current and marketable artistic identity that many people in the main voting demographic loved, and a tragic backstory that could gain a lot of fans.  But he was only 15, and few singers that young can keep up with the grind of the show long enough to win.  And after “Heartbreak Hotel”, whether it was because he was trying to gyrate more during his performances and began being seen as a novelty act, or whether it was just the pressure of having to do live performances every week, he began to falter, losing many of his more casual fans to Will, while Jack kept improving and Abi killed most of her performances.  Triston was just too inexperienced to win at this stage of his career, and that is why Triston lost.

Edited by CarmenSandiego
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17 hours ago, Sheryl said:

Rubbish! Tristons vocals during his final performances were his best all season. The reason he lost is the same reason Emmy the songwriter-not-singer made it too far in the competition: it's rigged. First of all, ABC and Hulu have it set up so that the majority of Americans would have to vote for popularity rather than merit. Most of us are cord cutters so by the time we can view the performances, voting has ended. I guarantee Will already has calls from other artists who want to work with him on projects, as well as from agents and producers. I'm sure Abi has people beating down her door to get her to sign. (Honestly I wish she was spending her time making that first album I'm chomping at the bit to buy instead of wasting it on American Idol. Shes another Sara Mclachlan but Idol has her prancing around the stage like Britany Spears. What a waste!) Jack Blocker is a veteran in the business and he can easily do his own thing now that Idol has allowed him to introduce himself to the masses. They're all as worthy as Triston, but if everyone who can watch could actually place a legitimate vote, Trust in would win this season. So rigged! I'm not watching the rest of the season or any Idol "competitions" in the future. Plus I just cancelled Hulu. I'm really mad about the way they did that very deserving young man. And SHAME ON CARMEN from San Diego for her unfair assessment of his talent. He won as far as I'm concerned. Go, Triston! Roll Tide! (And I'm not even a country fan!)

(Insert your pronouns here,) this is a Wendy's.

 

And...you do...realize that Carmen can not only read your comment, but does this with literally every "loser" from Top 24 onward?

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7 hours ago, NGL2008 said:

(Insert your pronouns here,) this is a Wendy's.

 

And...you do...realize that Carmen can not only read your comment, but does this with literally every "loser" from Top 24 onward?


Not only could I see Sheryl’s comment, I could report on it too — which I did.

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15 hours ago, CarmenSandiego said:


Not only could I see Sheryl’s comment, I could report on it too — which I did.

I never understood their logic. I've gotten stuff before like "This guy is pretty cringe" and "This guy looks like (edgy remark I can't even say on here.)" Are they too daft to understand that creators have the ability to read comments? Like only commenters being able to do that would make sense...

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4 hours ago, NGL2008 said:

I never understood their logic. I've gotten stuff before like "This guy is pretty cringe" and "This guy looks like (edgy remark I can't even say on here.)" Are they too daft to understand that creators have the ability to read comments? Like only commenters being able to do that would make sense...


Good question.

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