What an interesting night! We are down to four, and only one is female. They must want Katharine McPhee to make it through. They've got to want the beautiful woman to survive amid the three less-than-beautiful men.
They put Katharine in the last slot, which is the standard way to signal support. All she really needs to do is sing pleasantly enough. Why try so hard? But she overdoes everything. It reeks of desperation. She's advised to give meaning to the words of "I Can't Help Falling in Love With You," and then she goes out and sings it as if nothing mattered less than the words. Why, Katharine, why? But the judges are pretty mean to her, and that tends to light a fire under the fans, and I think she will make it.
And then there's Elliott Yamin. Dear, sweet Elliott. Everyone assumed he's the one who'll have to leave. But he sings brilliantly, better than anyone. The judges lavish praise on him, and this is likely to lull the voters. The chances that he will leave, even though he was clearly the best, are quite high.
What about Chris Daughtry, my longtime favorite? I've seen him carry the microphone stand all over the stage two too many times. He doesn't deserve to beat Elliott, dear, sweet Elliott.
And Taylor Hicks? We know he's popular, and he's not going home. He threw himself all over the place for "Jailhouse Rock," and then he pulled it all together for "In the Ghetto," despite the terrible, intrusive arrangement, and the idiotic truncation of the lyrics. "In the Ghetto" tells a life story. Ending it with "And a hungry little boy with a runny nose/Plays in the street as the cold wind blows" is beyond ridiculous. Ooh, how tragic, that a boy has a runny nose!