Disco night on "American Idol'' nearly proves to be the last dance for Anthony and Scott, but it's music teacher Anwar who fails to make the grade

By Michael Slezak
July 03, 2005 at 04:00 AM EDT
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”American Idol”: The last dance

When even your core fans can’t think of anything nice to say about you, you know your time on American Idol is coming to an end. And so it was for music teacher Anwar Robinson, whose performance of Earth, Wind & Fire’s ”September” got panned by not only Simon Cowell but also the majority of EW.com readers.

”I’ve been an Anwar supporter, but he gets worse each week, rather than better,” wrote Katie. A reader named JS agreed, arguing that while the ever-smiling contestant seems like a nice guy, his performances didn?t warrant the praise heaped on him by judges Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson.

Not to worry, a lot of the critiques of Anwar on our Idol message board were downright Simon-esque. ”I couldn’t watch Anwar flailing around toward the end of his song — it was scary and embarrassing,” wrote Donn. Meanwhile, Shingo noted that while Anwar’s song choice was fabulous, his ”cheesy delivery of said song” was not.

Dozens of you not only correctly predicted Anwar’s ouster but also guessed that he would be joined in the bottom three by Scott Savol and Anthony Fedorov (the producers didn’t reveal which one was the second lowest vote getter). But while most of you were rooting for Scott’s demise in the competition, there appears to be a sudden groundswell of support for Anthony in the wake of his hip-swaying rendition of Tavares’ ”Don’t Take Away the Music.”

But if Scott survives one more week, I’m worried some of you might take to the streets with picket signs. ”With Scott’s bad attitude, bad wardrobe, and just plain ole lack of good taste,” asked Wanda, ”how does America continue to keep him alive?”

Another reader, a self-described fan of both Idol and The Amazing Race, compared Scott to the latter show’s older duo of Meredith and Gretchen: ”Consistently bad, but one other singer manages to be worse each week. This week’s chum — Anwar.”

Anthony’s bottom-three placing, however, is likely to provoke a mixed reaction among EW.com readers, since most of you either love his performances or hate them. As a result, he takes home this week’s prize for most divisive contestant.

”Anthony was awesome last night,” wrote Mandy. ”He shows range, and can sing and dance at the same time.” Hadical agreed, arguing that ”Anthony is slowly rising to the top with what was last night’s best performance.” Broadway Baby, on the other hand, tabbed Anthony’s Tuesday-night performance as one of the two weakest, while Chloe from Ft. Myers called him ”mediocre at best.”

Another emerging trend from our message boards: A lot of you are saying this season’s competitors don’t compare to the previous three sets of Idol finalists. ”No one seems to want to win it this year,” wrote Tim. ”In previous seasons, you could tell that as the weeks went by, the contestants stepped it up a notch, but not this year! Safe song after safe song!”

A reader named Rita concurred: ”No one has been really bringing it, improving each week, showing their versatility, and being able to change it up as a live performer,” she wrote. ”In seasons past, the best performers like Kelly, Clay, Kim Locke, and Fantasia would really work hard and it showed on stage; this year it seems as if simply the exposure on national TV is enough.”

Or, as TMH put it, ”None of the contestants are anywhere near as good as last year’s. I mean, come on, no one can top Fantasia. The only one to come even close [Mario Vazquez] left when he had a chance to be in the top 12.”

Frequent poster LKD, however, sees it differently: ”I’d like to know what some people think this season is lacking. We’ve got two contestants unlike any other we’ve seen before (Constantine and Bo), one Stepford wife/Barbie doll fembot, a larger-than-life and sweet mail-carrier (Vonzell), a Ukrainian who embraces the cheesy, the kind and sincere schoolteacher Anwar, and the controversial, wrong-side-of-the-tracks boy who people feel sorry for (Scott). What’s not to love about this season?”

Well, for one thing, bloated tributes to irritating host Ryan Seacrest, and his inexplicable new star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. How much do you think those things are going for on eBay, anyhow?

Oh, and while we’re on the subject of Mr. Seacrest, in case he (or clueless Carrie Underwood) happens to be reading this column, our insightful reader Fran would like to give you a little primer on the meaning of those tricky ”MacArthur Park” lyrics, so pay attention: ” ‘Someone left the cake out in the rain’ means that you had a good thing and it’s ruined. ‘I’ll never have the recipe again’ means that you can’t recreate that wonderful experience. Okay, Ryan? Okay, Carrie?” School’s in session, people!

What do you think? Did Anwar deserve to go home this week, or did another contestant catch a lucky break? And what musical genre would you like the show to cover next?

Episode Recaps

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