'American Idol' on the scene for Top 5 results show: 12 things you didn't see


Image Credit: Michael Becker/Fox

The Idol block this week was decidedly Jenny’s. Wednesday night found the diva wearing the hottest heels in the universe, and in case you were wondering, she continued the streak last night in a pair of red-soled Louboutins. But truly, her pumps weren’t the story last night in the Idoldome: It was all about her sizzling performance of certified-hit “On the Floor,” as you can see in the photo here. But there was a secret to Jenny’s “Floor’-filled show: Even though the show masqueraded it as otherwise to you television viewers, J.Lo’s singing was totally pretaped.

Granted, she did sing it live at some point last week, but in the tradition of Idol performances from Sugarland to Katy Perry so far this season, Jennifer belted “On the Floor” at a different, previous time and producers simply stuck video of the spectacle into last night’s live show. “As far as I’m concerned,” warm-up comic Cory told the audience in the dome, “you saw it live.” We were encouraged to act like we saw it live!

And even though it wasn’t technically a “live” performance, it was hilarious to watch producers, other judges, and host Ryan act like it was. Ryan announced that Lopez would need to leave to get ready for her song, and inside the Idoldome, executive producer Nigel Lythgoe even went to the trouble of whisking her away backstage before they cut to tape that had already been shot. The whole intro bit with Ryan, Steven, and Randy in the audience (complete with popcorn!) was indeed live. Needless to say, this one here (that’d be me!) was disappointed to not experience the glass-shattering, literally on-the-floor performance when it actually happened. But, I will say that the whole thing was still pretty hot. I was impressed, and constantly am, with J.Lo’s fabulousness.

Elsewhere in the Idoldome lots was going on that you likely didn’t see. Here’s a rundown of 12 highlights from my perch, which I’m happy to report was much closer to the action than it was on Wednesday evening:

• Love for Jacob: One of the first signs I noticed being toted in by an audience member last night was one that showed three pictures — Jordin Sparks, Chris Brown, and Jacob Lusk — and the simple words: “Jacob Just Be You.” The little boy holding it seemed to be telling the ill-fated singer that his questionable rendition of “No Air” was good enough for him. The sign ended up winning its owner, little Dawson, a spot on the stage during a commercial break, where audience-wizard Cory gave him a Jacob-branded prize. And then Jacob himself came over and offered several high fives and fist bumps to the very excited child. Awww.

• Bridesmaid Realness: It’s clear we are getting close to the season finale of American Idol because the fashion in the audience has started to ramp up. Errr, maybe ramp up isn’t the right word choice? Ramp down maybe? This week there was seemingly a bridesmaid theme going on, as I spotted one lady wearing a shiny red number that’d be perfect for a traditional ceremony somewhere in the Midwest. Elsewhere, an older woman sported a dress with fabric flowers that cascaded down from one shoulder. Find a bride and groom! Those gals seemed more ready for a ceremony rather than the Top 5 results show of Idol.

• Jennifer Lopez’s Coke Cup of…Orange Juice?: I know it might be difficult to believe, but it’s very unlikely that what’s in those uber-sponsored Coke cups the judges sip from is actually Coke! Here’s my totally scientific, totally investigative report: I spied an assistant of some sort who was toting a to-go cup of orange juice come out and snatch Jenny’s cup and head backstage with it. Is Lopez sipping juice instead of Coke? I’m not suggesting that, but I’m just suggesting what I saw go down. We’ll probably never know, but it seems likely. For shame!

• Idols Learn to Work the Crowd!: After the five Idols were introduced at the top of the hour, they were quickly shooed over to their couch during the first commercial break. And what was instantly noticeable was how much more comfortable these kids were with working the crowd. They were waving to their fans so much that stage manager Debbie had a hard time corralling them over to their new spots. The kids love these kids! It’s a marked change from the early days of the live shows, when they’d all sit there looking more scared than anything else during the breaks.

• The Idols Meet Their…Idols?: Well, maybe the three folks in Lady Antebellum aren’t idols for all the Idols, but they certainly were — surprise, surprise! — for one of the contestants: Lauren Alaina. After the trio performed their new song “Just a Kiss,” the countrified gal ran over to greet them all very excitedly. It wasn’t until after Lauren lavished them for a little while that the other four Idols came over to say hi. (Lady Antebellum also went to greet the judges, too. Steven kissed the hand of Hillary Scott.)

• Steven’s Fresh Breath: During an early commercial break, I spied one gal from Steven’s hair and makeup team giving him a little boost in the fresh breath department: an Altoid. She took one, too, and offered one to the other hair and makeup gal there with her. The always-jovial rocker took an extra, too, and threw it over to his big, burly body guard who always sits just a few feet from him.

• Scotty’s Sign: During a commercial break, Scotty spotted a sign in the audience that he liked. The small child was holding a sign that hilariously said: “Beam Me Up, Scotty!” The country singer asked Cory to bring the kid up to the stage, and he took home an iPad case signed y Scotty himself.

• A Dark Moment in the Idoldome: When Ryan asked Scotty to pick the group he thought was safe, how’d that play on television? In the Idoldome, it felt like a burst of icy cold air. How could he ask Scotty to do such a thing? Actually, several in the audience around me uttered just that thought. It was even crazier when Scotty actually walked over to stand with Haley and James, who did indeed end up being safe with him. (Shouldn’t he have done the I’m-gonna-sit-down-right-here-in-the-middle thing?)

• Continued Darkness: The commercial break between when Scotty was asked to choose who was safe and when Ryan delivered the news to Jacob might have possibly been the most awkward minutes I’ve ever experienced in the Idoldome this season. “This is a hard time for these guys, everybody,” stage manager Debbie said over the PA system to the crowd, as she comforted Lauren and Jacob, who were still standing in the middle of the stage awaiting their fates.

• Ryan’s Embrace: While Jacob was doing his final performance of “A House is Not a Home,” I spied Ryan off to the side with the safe contestants. Who was he embracing? Randomly, it was Scotty. And it was just a few seconds before Jacob finished “Home” that stage manager Debbie dutifully appeared at the safe couch, too, to shoo the four remaining Idols out onto the stage for a little dancing and whatnot.

• Jacob Plus the Judges: After that party on the stage at the end of Jacob’s performance, everyone stuck around past Ryan’s sign off, as per usual. And the most noticeable thing was the seriousness with which Randy and Steven were talking to Jacob. Especially Steven, who intensely grabbed the voted off contestant’s face and seemed to be doing everything in his power to keep his spirits up. I would love to know what Steven was saying to Jacob in that moment.

• The Left Behind: Ryan might have plugged Steven’s memoir, Does The Noise In My Head Bother You?, during the show, but the judge couldn’t have seemed to care less about the book, as he left a copy of it sitting on the judges table when he exited the Idoldome. I suppose he might have a few copies elsewhere, but I’m surprised the constant crowd-pleaser didn’t sign it and pass it on to one of his many cougarific fans in the crowd. They were, as always, out in full force last night.

Tanner on Twitter: @EWTanStransky

Read more:
‘American Idol’ Central
‘American Idol’ recap: God Bless the Wild
‘American Idol’ on the scene for Top 5 performance night: The details on Jennifer Lopez’s hot-hot-hot (and hidden) heels!

Comments (152 total) Add your comment
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  • lee

    seacrest actually pushed scotty towards haley and james. you can hear haley and scotty talk about it on tv.

    • t.t

      and seacrest hugging scotty isn’t random its prob cause he was apologizing for the douche move

      • Mysti

        Ryan does that at least once every year..

    • darclyte

      Ryan didn’t “push” Scotty, he walked him over to Haley like he was an usher. Haley looked at Scotty and asked if he really had just chosen, and Scotty replied that Ryan had “pushed him” there.

      • Sollo

        But he didn’t choose a side — Ryan guided him over to the correct side.

      • Ralph

        Looked like he pushed him to me.

      • deamrtin

        ryan pushed him

      • dj

        Regardless, he told Haley that “he” had pushed him over, meaning Ryan.

    • patman

      Secreast should have had Scotty PUSH the loser OFF the stage. Madame Lusk will never get a deal because no one can teach him anything he doesnt all ready know, right? MANDIVA!!!

      • bet

        Feel better now homophobe? How adult of you. I don’t like Jacob but you need to GTFU!

      • ellsworth

        Jacob IS a diva and a madame. It is not homophobic to say that. It IS however, homophobic to suggest that if one is gay then you have to be a diva and a madame. Especially a ridiculously self-conceited one like Madame Jacob!

      • TWO

        hey, Bet – chip on your shoulder much? I have always hated Jacob’s singing and am glad he’s gone. I didn’t know he was gay till I read it here. I am so SICK of everyone being called a homophobe if they don’t like someone who’s gay – as IF that was the only thing that mattered about a gay person. If someone who’s not white hates Scotty, are they racist? If someone doesn’t like Lauren, are they a sexist pig? Get off your soap box and let people have their opinions, unless you don’t want a right to your own, too.

  • andy

    Scotty wouldn’t choose so Ryan pushed him over there. That was clearly apparent on screen. Scotty clearly said he would not pick.

  • idolbethejudge.blogspot.com

    It was clear that the J.Lo performance was taped because Lauren and James were standing in the exact same spot, doing the exact same thing as they were doing before the commercial break and J.Lo’s performance. Lauren breaking down was pretty sad, I felt really bad for her. I think she probably deserved to be Bottom 2, maybe James was a little weaker, but I am glad she made it to next week.

  • Cheyenne

    I heard Scotty said “he pushed me over here.”
    He clearly is a good kid & thought that was mean.
    Ryan has been a little snotty this year~ Simon might have to teach those judges to plant his feet back on the ground.

    • Shannon

      Ryan does the same schtick every year. At least since Bryan Dunkelman left the building…

  • lizee

    Scotty didn’t choose a side, Ryan pushed him towards Hailey and James. You can also hear Hailey asking Scotty and elves responded “he pushed me”

  • Uh…Tanner

    Ryan pushed Scotty towards James/Haley.

  • yeah

    Ryan put his left arm on Scotty’s shoulder and pulled him gently over next to Haley and then she appeared to ask Scotty “you walked over here?” and he said something like
    “he pushed me”.

    • Squishmar

      It seems clear to me that Tanner didn’t see that. He asked in his recap… “How did that play on tv?” I imagine he was probably jotting down a note to satisfy all who said they wanted more detailed recaps of the behind-the-scenes reports and missed Ryan leading him there. And being in the audience, he probably didn’t hear the exchange between Haley and Scotty. Tanner specifically asked ‘how did that play on tv?” The whole point of these is to get the perspective of an audience member. If you want a recap of what you saw on at home, read Annie Barrett’s recaps. These are from a different point of view. I’m just sticking up for Tanner here, a little.

  • noelle rio

    Jacob has een a great contestant with a very special talent!! Glad to hear Steven and Randy provided some support & special attention to Jacob–He is a deserving contestant who truly tried his best!! WISHING all good things &
    Lots of LUCK to Jacob Lusk!!
    He should start recording ASAP- he owns a very special talent!!

    • Roma

      If his talent includes making people reach for the OFF button on the tv/radio, then yes, he’s special all right.

      • Sherry

        I am totally on board with you

      • R

        Agreed. She was wretched. Ran out of lip gloss. Over.

    • Ralph

      Oh, please. Jacob, if you’re going to post on this board, please use your real name.

  • @Melvin Stokes

    WRONGO, Tanner!!! Ryan clearly guided Scotty over to the safe group. Epic fail on your part.

    • Jaded

      Epic? Really? Maybe a fail, but surely not an epic one!

    • Squishmar

      And, I’ll say it again… Tanner clearly didn’t see that from the audience… he asked “how did that play on tv?”

  • Yay!! Goat boy is gone

    Thank god that conceited jerk is gone. Should have been gone weeks ago!

  • Pam

    I always hate it when Ryan puts them into groups and then makes the last one choose which group he (or she) belongs in. Good for Scotty for refusing to choose, although I didn’t realize that inside the Idoldome, it would come off that Scotty actually did pick one group over the other. It was obvious on TV that Ryan made Scotty move toward James and Haley. When will they put this lousy schtick to rest??? It’s just stupid and mean.

    • B.Rich

      I wanted them to do it with Haley, but predictably they did the favorite

  • QJ201

    What no comment on Jennifer’s costume?

    I’m deciding between calling it “Sequined sweat pants” or “Diaper pants”

    • Kate

      I said it looks like she’s wearing a diaper when she came on too!

    • Sollo

      It was a strange, strange outfit.

    • Beth in MI

      My husband said it looked like she was trying to bring back Hammer pants.

      • anon

        My husband said the same thing – “MC Hammer called and said he doesn’t want his pants back” – ROFL.

    • Ralph

      I’m still reeling from Tanner being so impressed with JHo’s “fabulousness.” Are you kidding me? That was one of the worst fake performances on Idol ever. And that’s saying a lot. No wonder JHo’s so jealous of Haley. JHo can’t sing. And her “new” song is a lame Shakira rip-off. She can’t sing, she can’t dance, she can’t judge. Is there anything she CAN do?

    • tina

      My hubby said the same thing about hammer pants. What I don’t get is why the charade of her singing “live”. EW told us last week that it was taped! Who cares. All the fake ” singing live” and “while she gets changed” from Ryan, REALLY? Is it that necessary? Gotta admit, AI was just the exposure she needed at this point in her career.

    • L

      She looked preggers.

    • G-Ma

      So glad others noticed J-Lo’s pants! What the heck? Somebody needs to tell her those pants look like a diaper that’s been filled, and makes her legs look teeeny tiny short.

      • Squishmar

        My god, you’re right! I didn’t realize how stumpy it made her legs look! Very strange.

  • chris

    I know many people have already commented, but just to add: Scotty did not pick which people to stand next to! There is audio in which this is quite clear.

  • Mark

    Anyone else laugh that Jacob said “America Loves Me” – huh???!!!
    Not everyone, buddy!

    • AS

      “America fell in love with me.”

    • Roma

      My daughter was laughing and yelling at the television “Uh, no Jacob, America did not fall in love with you”. Big part of his problem, he thinks he’s WAY better than he is.

      • tina

        OMG, I couldn’t believe he said that. I said the exact same thing, he thinks he’s better than he is. He’s got outrageous range, but he seems pretty arrogant.

      • Jane

        Jacob came in 5th – higher than most – clearly he has fans. Why people seem to enjoy bashing someone who has left is odd.

      • Gene

        Jane, he came in fifth. Even if he’d won, that still wouldn’t mean “America fell in love with” him, as he claims. Pointing out that Jacob is delusional to even think, let alone SAY ALOUD that the nation in general has fallen in love with him when, for all he knows, one contestant has been getting 99% of the votes every week and he’s been sharing that 1% with the others, is not “bashing” someone. I think it’s absurd whenever any of these people assume the entire voting public likes them because they made it into the top [insert number here]. You’re getting only a fraction of the votes, the votes come from only a fraction of the viewers, and the viewing audience for AI is only a small fraction of the country’s population. Get some perspective, moron.

      • Squishmar

        Well, Gene, I see your point… but in the emotion of the moment, I’m sure he didn’t think to say, “Some of America–however small a percentage of the actual population–fell in love with me!” Besides, the show’s not called “A Partial Representation of Americans’ Idol”

    • rob

      actually Jacob was my favorite this year. He actually sings for real and not stupid bubble gum pop crap like mainstream. His powerful voice did indeed make me love him. Sorry to spoil your party but he does have fans.

  • gigi

    Let’s hope J.Lo’s juice was Minute Maid ( also owned by Coke).

    • Squishmar

      You’re so right! And I bet it was.

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