Gasp! Tamyra is voted off! Jessica Shaw responds to a TV moment that evoked screams of horror -- the ousting of Tamyra from ''American Idol''

By Jessica Shaw
Updated July 04, 2003 at 04:00 AM EDT
Credit: Tamyra Gray: Joe Viles

Gasp! Tamyra is voted off!

I spent much of last night packing, and I’m ready to renounce my American citizenship and move to Canada where the citizens would never have voted off Tamyra Gray, the most talented of the entire ”American Idol” bunch. After Tuesday’s show, I knew Tamyra didn’t do her usual stellar performances (Patti LaBelle’s severely lame song, ”New Attitude,” can now be blamed for Tamyra’s downfall) but I figured there was no way Nikki would outlast her. I mean, Nikki only hits maybe one out of every six notes. Short of her last name being Verizon and her family fixing the vote, there was no way she could continue her over-long stay on America’s TV screens.

But since the injustice is final, let’s look on the bright side. First of all, Kelly is now a done deal — which is sweet. She doesn’t have the brilliance of Tamyra but her voice is certainly exceptional and she’s become America’s sweetheart. So why not America’s Idol? Even though Nikki’s made it this far, she’s not going to be in the final two. And Justin is too hit or miss to become the ultimate winner. It’s all about Kelly and if it wasn’t going to be all about Tamyra, we can all be satisfied in Ducka Ducka Ducka’s dominance.

As for Tamyra, there are many reasons for this week’s loser to consider herself the winner. As Paula said ”tomorrow is the first day of the rest of your career.” No doubt by the time you’re reading this, record executives have already tried to woo Ms. Gray. She won’t need Simon’s wink or Randy’s offer of help — even though he’s worked with Mariah and Whitney. (What? You didn’t hear the 2,000th time he reminded us?) Tamyra will be sifting through offers and won’t have to endure the eternal link to this increasingly annoying show. She probably won’t ever have to hear ”Tamyra Tamyra Tamyra” uttered again, and for that, she should be extremely grateful.

Of course, now that we know who’s going to win, why bother watching? So we can see Paula’s sartorial disasters? (What was up with that sideways leopard hat? Did she raid her ”Straight Up” video wardrobe?) So we can hear Randy repeatedly, repeatedly, repeatedly strangle the spoken word? So we can see Simon increasingly regret his decision to bring this show to the States? So we can see the ridiculously forced ”fighting” between the judges? (As Simon said, Paula should sue her comedy writer. Her lines, such as ”Simon would critique a suicide note,” are embarrassing.) So we can watch Ryan Seacrest looking so sure that he’s got a TV career when this is all done? So we can witness Brian Dunkelman wishing he were Ryan Seacrest? The answer is a tepid yes. We’ve come so far watching this series that we may as well see it to the end. The sooner it’s over, the sooner we can wait on line for Tamyra’s first CD.

What do you think of Tamyra’s exit from the show?

Episode Recaps

American Idol

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

  • TV Show
  • 16
  • 574
  • ABC