Randy and Steven tell J. Lo she can't save her adorable pet; The Wanted and Kellie Pickler perform

By Annie Barrett
Updated April 06, 2012 at 04:13 AM EDT

American Idol

S11 E26
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  • ABC

Hush, my darling. Don’t fear, my darling. You looked beautiful tonight.

Against J. Lo’s wishes, the judges did not use their save this week, so wild-haired, chiseled-faced 17-year-old DeAndre Brackensick was eliminated. He went out on a high note — namely the final note of his sing-for-your-life jam, Stevie Wonder’s “Master Blaster.”

The often bewildered baby lion prince had delivered his most confident performance to date on Wednesday night, so his rock-bottom placement may have come as a surprise. Overall, though, he was the right one to head home from the Top 8.

I only wish he hadn’t yanked that mane into a tragic loose ponytail just before the judges had their final say. In a way, this was Simba’s first and only act of defiance. So what if they didn’t want the goods? He’d just closed up the shop anyway. The customers are always wrong.

While I was satisfied with tonight’s decision, I hated what J. Lo and Randy implied — that America had gotten the bottom two only “half right.” To me, Elise Testone has the coolest voice in the competition and has shown more artistry, stage presence, and passion than anyone else. She’s not a frightened animal and she’s not a robot. In other words, the judges don’t like her. To shoot the non-teen down like that for one iffy performance was totally unnecessary. You want to know what love isn’t? This.

Hollie Cavanagh had joined DeAndre and Elise on the bottom three stools of doom after Jimmy Iovine ragged that Wednesday’s “Flashdance” effort “wasn’t even a great high school performance.” Jimmy also had harsh words for Phillip Phillips, saying he’d given his worst performance of the entire season. “It’s very difficult to push yourself when everyone’s telling you you’re so great,” pointed out Sebastian the crab.

After listening to Jimmy, Phillip copped a bit of a holier-than-Idol attitude, telling Ryan, “I don’t go around onstage and try to touch people’s hands. That’s not me. I’m just trying to play music.” None of that had anything to do with Jimmy’s comments, let alone Ryan’s question, which was “Are you worried about complacency?” But to be fair, that’s a tough word. Since when does Seacrest sling such challenging vocab?

Meanwhile, Joshua Ledet felt lightheaded. “Do you feel like you might pass out?” Ryan asked greedily.

I didn’t think too much of this screengrab until reader/hidden gem miner @CindyKay618 pointed out to me via Twitter that DeAndre’s hair makes it look like Joshua is holding a pom pom. Good looking out, Cindy! Goooooo….Joshua!

NEXT: British boy band The Wanted is glad Jennifer Lopez came

J. Lo premiered her new video for “Dance Again” after enduring teasing from Ryan regarding her boy toy in the clip, Casper the Friendly Dancer. Oh Ryan, don’t make me introduce my video. Drama queen!

J. Lo claimed her single had a “good message.” From what I could gather, this message is that if a scantily clad Kohl’s spokesperson can make wise use of a blindfold and shatter what we think we know about perception and gravity by writhing around on a floor that’s really a ceiling that’s really a wall, she can turn her dance partner into sparkly liquid sand. Is he human or is he glitter? He is DANCER. Again.

The Wanted are five cute British boys in a band. I wanted them to stop singing. Just me? I like their single “Glad You Came” well enough on the radio (and on Glee), but that did not sound good live. Hey, at least they were emitting sounds. This was a visual spectacle more than anything else, with thrashing DeAndre-haired backup dancer ladies who tastefully shot fireworks out of their crotch areas once the exercise had reached completion. At one point, the hot one with the shaved head (Max George; thanks Google; NSFW) got J. Lo to dance with him. She remained seated, but they both got what they wanted. “I’m glad you came,” he whispered over her shoulder before bounding back onstage.

“You get to first base with J. Lo”? Ryan asked. Sweet, naive Ryan. I’m worried about his complacency.

“Where’s Kellie Pickler?” I wondered as the former Idol took the stage. I thought the blue-jeaned babe might have been a twitchy Kate Hudson impersonator or someone’s super-fit mom, but nope it was Kellie. The real question was “Where’s Tammy Wynette,” a.k.a. the name of Kellie’s single. This was certainly fun enough if you’re into the country thing. I liked her sweet little howls and the way she interacted with the swaybots. “Oh, there’s a hussy over there?” Kellie sang. Then she shall saunter over there and touch that hussy’s hands! Because that’s just how it’s done on this here TV show, Phillip.

Cheers to DeAndre. ‘Til he finds his place on the path unwinding, we will never forget his hair.


It moves us all.

Should the judges have used that save? Who has the most momentum headed into next week?

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