The real competition on American Idol has begun, and I'm not sure who I'm rooting for. There's young crooner John Stevens, who is also a local boy, but he's awfully young and I just can't see his style carrying him all the way through to victory -- especially with Randy Jackson getting more hostile toward him every time he picks up the microphone. (And Simon is nice to him! Weird....)
I also finally started to see what they like about Fantasia Barrino so much. She's the one the judges have gushed over, unanimously, each time she has sung, but I haven't really been able to grok her stuff since she keeps doing songs that I don't like that much. Last night, though, she did a good one, and I got a kick out of it.
I also really like that football player guy, Matthew Rogers; but for my money, I think I'm really rooting for George Huff. I really like his voice and his exuberance. In fact, I really like his exuberance, and the way he's constantly smiling in that "Gosh, this is all just so much fun!" way of his. And this will probably sound weird, but he reminds me of Josh Exley, the alien-turned-1940s baseball player from the X-Files episode "The Un-natural". The gist of the episode -- which is one of my favorite episodes of any TV series, ever -- was that an alien from a species that had no concept of joy discovers it for himself in the course of playing baseball. Like George Huff, the Josh Exley character was a good singer, smiled a lot, and just enjoyed the fun of it all. And George even looks like Josh Exley.
Maybe that's a strange reason to root for a contestant on a reality show, but it's my reason, and I'm sticking with it.
(BTW, I taped the last half hour and watched Scrubs instead -- brilliant episode, as always. But did Paula Abdul actually manage to make it through an entire show without telling a contestant some variant of, "I'm so proud of you, you chose a really hard song, but you made it your own"?)