Thursday's results show of "American Idol" had it all: surprise guests Stevie Wonder and Hulk Hogan, a birthday party, a standout performance from Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson, and all ranges of emotion. In fact, the only thing missing from the elimination show was ... an elimination. Judges Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler shocked the crowd by using their judges' save on the lowest vote-getter, Casey Abrams, and the results were Emmy gold. This is just the kind of segment of "American Idol" that producers should send to Emmy judges.
As Abrams sang for his life to the judges, Jackson signaled for him to stop. "Listen, we know who you are, Casey," Jackson said. "We don't need to hear you sing anymore."
Tyler chimed in: "This is crazy wrong. I mean, we made a decision here to keep you on." Hearing that, Abrams immediately began shaking uncontrollably, looking for a brief moment like he was going to faint. Ryan Seacrest kept a worried eye on Abrams as he ran around the stage in hysterics, thanking the judges, screaming in delight and hugging his parents.
In the past, "Idol" producers submitted their season finales to Emmy voters judging the reality-competition race. Last year, many awards pundits thought the series finally had a shot at taking home the prize. In addition to the crowning of Lee DeWyze and the extensive list of guest performers (including Janet Jackson and Bret Michaels), last year's episode submission included Simon Cowell's tear-filled goodbye episode. Alas, "Idol" still couldn't catch a break, and "Top Chef" came away with a surprise victory over seven-time winner "The Amazing Race."
It's time for the hit show to try a new angle with the Emmys, and this week's emotional results show might be its best shot at finally taking home the elusive prize.
Watch the emotional video here:
— Tom O'Neil
Photo: Ryan Seacrest and Casey Abrams (Fox TV)