But about the singing. I loved David Cook making that dorky Lionel Ritchie song "Hello" into something rockish. And Jason Castro sang "Hallelujah," such a great song, winningly enough. Michael Johns sounded too much like he was just horsing around with the 80s the way he did "Don't You Forget About Me." Ditto Luke Menard with "Wake Me Up Before You Go Go." Another thing about Johns was that he bleated and seemed cheesy. Menard, on the other hand, made me reminisce about how passionate and exciting George Michael was in the original Wham version, which is my favorite 80s single. (Chez Althouse, it got played a lot on a Fisher-Price record player back then.) Danny Noriega sang some damned thing that I didn't like and couldn't even recognize as a song. David Achuleta sang Another Day in Paradise" earnestly and prettily and used his after-song interview to deliver a mini-sermon about the homeless, for whom he cares. David Hernandez — I've already forgotten what he did. Has the bad press wrecked my opinion of him? Chikezie? What was that thing he sang?
ADDED: Jacob at Television Without Pity gets very heavy-handed about Danny Noriega:
[W]hat I can't fucking abide is this idea that some dumb kid is going to see Danny on the screen... and realize that this is a way to get approval, attention, and acceptance. Taking the Danny route means putting all the scary things about gay people and stuffing them into a tiny little asterisk, while magnifying all the childish, feminine, negligible things -- all the things that put you in the category of not mattering -- and expanding them so that they cover your whole personality, with just a tiny little asterisk of things that we can, as a culture, forgive. As long as we don't have to see them, think about them, or otherwise confront them in a way which isn't hilariously powerless....
Maybe Danny's the Marilyn Monroe of the show and knows that fulfilling an archetype this insanely well is actually a power play. I can see that, actually. I just don't like what it does to everybody else -- also, now that I think of it, a problem with people like Marilyn, who excel at putting on the face like that.