Candice and Kree wait it out in a finale featuring Jennifer Hudson, Adam Lambert, Fireworks Mariah, Satellite Aretha, and more

By Annie Barrett
Updated May 17, 2013 at 10:00 AM EDT
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After a finale bursting at the seams with celebrity-contestant duets (Jennifer Hudson and Candice! Adam Lambert/Jessie J and Angie! Keith Urban and Kree!) and soul-searching questions (Is Randy Jackson really a dog? Is Satellite Aretha the new Hologram Tupac?), we have an official leading lady! American Idol’s 2013 winner is…

CANDICE GLOVER!

Kree Harrison is the runner-up. No surprises here; most of us (except Candice herself, she told EW) figured Candice would take it. She was the best! Kree, too, was good. It wasn’t a very suspenseful finale, but OF COURSE I choked up at the end anyway. The oppressive woes of season 12 mattered not at all for a few joyful minutes as soon as Candice realized Ryan was indeed saying her name. So many tears! Such lengthy confetti! I swear they supersized it since Phil Phil’s bleary-eyed victory.

Well done, Candice and Kree!

Update: Candice’s debut album, Music Speaks (featuring the single “I Am Beautiful”), will be released July 16 and is being rushed for pre-orders at candiceglover-official.com.

It’s all over. Chief takeaways: I am beautiful, and all cried out. Without further ado….

My Top 12 Moments of the Season 12 Finale

12. The thrilling prospect of Ryan Seacrest accidentally low-fiving one of the backup dancers (dressed in evil, shady black) instead of the Top 10 (dressed in heavenly, ghostly white) after that rousing opening group number, “Glad You Came To Lip-Sync.”

11. Potential Spoiler No. 1: And the winner…is…

Mariah Carey, in a pre-taped medley that made it look like she too was lip-syncing!

The only cool part of this: boob feathers. Worst performance by a wedding cake topper I’ve ever seen.

10. Someone’s dad was SUPER excited to hear the results.

Love ya, Taylor. #dadjokes

NEXT: Why, Psy? 9. Randy Jackson proudly displaying perhaps his LOUDEST JACKET YET behind the judges’ table…for the last time. Speaking of loud jackets, was anyone else desperately wishing Psy‘s way-too-small blue sateen jacket would just pop open? Not because it would be sexy, but because it would be embarrassing?

Yeah. I sort of hate that I’m still endlessly amused by Psy. He’s like the living embodiment of how dumb I feel while attempting to dance, and I love him for that.

8. My initial suspicion that guest performer Frankie Valli was Christopher Walken doing a spoof of a legend performing on the American Idol finale. And it would have made sense, too. Did they just Auto-Tune Frankie Valli? Seriously? And did the audience wranglers instruct the Swaybots in the front row to flutter their fingers for Frankie Valli, or did they just do that naturally? And finally, is it possible that the five backup dancers demonstrating how to “Walk Like a Man” actually better singers than the Top 5 Guys? I’m stumped.

7. Potential Spoiler No. 2 — when Aretha Franklin began her (taped?) segment from space: “So Candice, tonight you’re a winner…” and the more-absurd-with-every-second Top 5 girls singalong that awkwardly ensued.

6. Sabotage! That filler segment about how the girls REALLY took down the season 12 guys was pretty cute. My fave prank: Janelle doctoring Lazaro’s sheet music with a Sharpie and the editors’ blatant acknowledgement of how absolutely terrible that performance was.

NEXT: The Angie Miller Variety Show 5. Though catching up to the dreaded LIVE TV during J. Lo‘s performance was somewhat horrifying, I was momentarily enthralled that she might be about to execute a Rings routine. But nope — just a very well-choreographed ode to gladiator platform heels and frilly dresses that would look only slightly less ridiculous on a 12-year-old. Featuring Pitbull.

4. Kree seemed to be having a ball as the filling in a Keith Urban-Randy Jackson sandwich on Keith’s “Where the Blacktop Ends.” And she got some fireworks, too! So much smoke! But despite her letting loose, I could not stop focusing on Keith’s dreamy t-shirt.

He makes me never want to wash my hair again. (I’m sure he washes his all the time, and I never want to wash my hair in general because ugh, the dry-time — but still.)

3. Janelle Arthur head-banging with The Band Perry.

She looked and sounded as if she was really part of the group. Go Janelle!

2. The producers pulled out all the stops for third-place finisher Angie Miller, who got to sing with Adam Lambert and her own idol, Jessie J. I loved the dramatic surprise reveal of Adam at the end of the piano (*SCREAMS!*) and he was such a generous partner, letting her shine on “Titanium.” The Jessie J and Angie combo was pure joy — these two were like the more energetic, boppy version of Candice/Kree. Angie will go perform her single (which is available for download!) with Jessie J in the UK this summer. It’s all happening for Angie!

NEXT: Candy meets her match in J-Hud 1. Candice and Jennifer Hudson‘s “Inseparable” duet. Neither held back, and why should they have? Pure vocal powahhhhhhh! I loved how the judges were so overwhelmed they had to “air the place out” with sweeping hand gestures.

“KEEP SINGING!” –the Idol audience (and Ursula the Sea Witch)

Honorable Mention: Devin Velez as Nicki Minaj

Nailed it!

That Was Way Harsh, Tai bottom-dweller: You may have noticed I left Amber Holcomb and Emeli Sandé’s duet of “Next to Me” off the list. I know she was bummed she didn’t get Angie’s star treatment during the finale, but seriously, searching for any sign of Amber giving a s— in that duet was as useless as searching for meaning in a Randy Jackson critique.

That’s about it for the finale. Did you make it? Are you Clueless as to how? Discuss!

And THANK YOU for reading. You are all heroes and it’s you who should’ve gotten those free Fords.

Never forget…

Source: Vine

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American Idol

Ryan Seacrest hosts as Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan guide aspiring singers on their way to superstardom.
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