Yes, we are EXTREMELY happy that our prediction from way back in the day has stood the test of time. People and other assorted objects that Emma holds in high esteem never totally pan out, but they did this time. In honor of Jordin Sparks, we are going way back through time to accurately categorize her ascension to greatness.
Top 24 Night:
"Give Me One Reason" by Tracy Chapman.
Now, I REALLY don't like this song. I always thought it was Tracy's lesbian love tribute to Alice Walker. Not coincidentally, the Broadway adaptation of The Color Purple is well underway, with the only illiterate to win Idol at the helm. However, Jordin took a gutterally deep lame-o mid-1990s song and won us over from potentially joining Team Gina. This was the night when that Lakisha creature took on J-Hud with her massive F-cups, but it was all downhill for her after that. She should have covered a song from The Land Before Time or All Dogs Go To Heaven like Jordin did.
Our Rank: 7.
"A tree flower!"
Top 20 Night:
"Reflection" by Christina Aguilera.
You always hear about people stupidly taking on a Whitney song and then hardcore crashing, because Whitney is a vocal goddess who probably cracked her way out of God's head back in the day. However, maybe because she's still incorrectly grouped in with the sugary-laced content from 1999, people still think they can do Christina. No one can. It was one of the few mistakes from Jordin all season. On a mildly positive note, I think it's incredibly ballsy to basically admit that you watched "Mulan."
Our Rank: 4.
You KNOW what picture I could have put in there. But I didn't. If Blake had won, I probably would have.
Top 16 Night:
"Heartbreaker" by Pat Benetar.
We like when Jordin rocks out, but she tends to get whipped up and start shrieking. It's like when we watch Starship Troopers and Denise Richards is stabbed in the upper thigh. Well, no, it's not, but sometimes we shriek with delight when that happens. At least it's better than that Christina imitation from the week before, and the bottom line is quite simple - even on nights when she gets a little sharp and nutty, her voice is still 10 times better than all of the Caucasian performers, which is probably how she got to the Top 12.
Our Rank: 5
Must not laugh. Must not laugh.
Top 12 Night:
"If We Hold On Together" - Diana Ross. (FROM THE LAND BEFORE TIME!!!)
It was official. SOULMATES. When they showed a small snippet of her singing with Diana Ross, I lost my shizzle. Drunk Erin, who was casually propped up against my bed with (insert random alcoholic beverage), was visibly perturbed when I started screeching, "Holy shit! She's singing the song from the closing credits of Land Before Time! She watched Land Before Time too! BFFs!" Not only does Jordin totally understand the Don Bluth underrated carton legacy from the late 1980s, it's the breakthrough performance that puts her on the map.
Our Rank: 9.
Bye bye, Lakisha/F-cups.
Top 11 Night:
"I (Who Have Nothing)" - Shirley Bassey.
I legit think it's possible to listen slash watch this about 50 times and not get sick of it. However, I am not a fan of that cheesey move toward the beginning when she sings, "You buy her diamonds," and she flicks her hair back to reveal a diamond earring. Come on. You performed an archaic end credit Land Before Time ditty. You do not need to impress anyone with your bling or lyric context. We give extra bonus points for dusting off a song from the Kennedy Administration and putting it to fine use. Heart.
Our Rank: 10.
"Hey! I remember that song!"
Top 10 Night:
"Hey Baby" - No Doubt.
We have a lot of mixed feelings about this one. First of all, the kilt is AMAZINGNESS, and that checkered hoodie thing will be in my closet by the fall. Now, No Doubt hasn't been legit good since 1996, and it is very perplexing as to why they thought it would be a good idea to release a song that basically has two lines in it, and it is just as confusing that Jordin selected it all, especially since I REALLY had my fingers crossed that she would do "Excuse Me, Mister" or a Mariah Carey song to show up Stefani and her non-vocal chops. While it's not as screechy as the Pat Benetar, there are a few shrill moments. Jordin somehow pulled off a really shizzle-laced song though, and...somehow gave it a melody? Who knew it had that kind of potential?
Our Rank: 6.8.
Top 9 Night:
"On A Clear Day" - Tony Bennett.
Eh. I consider this the official slump of the Jordin legacy, which continues until Martina McBridge's Skeletor Face shows up for country night. There's nothing really BAD to say about the performance, but the song selection is dubious. Tony's got a pretty deep voice, and while Jordin hits the notes, the power that is incredibly noticable on her riffs on Top 11 night is significantly diminished. We're not feeling it.
Our Rank: 5.
"I have a broken wing!! Get it?"
Top 8 Night:
"The Rhythm is Gonna Get You." - Gloria Estefan.
Yawn. If you want to see a real shitfest, go to youtube and type "Haley Scarnato Turn The Beat Around." At least Jordin didn't have to resort to flashing her poon at the audience for votes. The NERVE.
Our Rank: 5.
Top 7 Night:
"A Broken Wing" -
Just when we started thinking, "What if Land Before Time was just a cruel, cruel tease?" Jordin unleashes perfection on country night, of all things. Who knew she could deftly switch up the genres like that? There isn't a single flaw to be seen here, from the suave left eyebrow lift in the first verse, to the hand motions that would seem unbearably cheesy coming from anyone else, to the slow but sure buildup at the end. Butterfly is to Mariah as A Broken Wing is to Jordin. This is not the first time that left eyebrow has moved into center stage, and it is quickly becoming the second most important celebrity facial characteristic ever, slightly behind Keira of Jawness.
Our Rank: 12 million billion.
People have probably been KILLED on that jawline.
Top 6 Night:
"You'll Never Walk Alone" - Rogers and Hammerstein.
Now, ideally, with the annoying subhuman scum that is Bono presiding as mentor for inspirationally themed song night, Jordin would have taken the opportunity to buy a tiny little bonzai tree, name it Joshua, and pee on it, but I think she would have lost more votes than gained, so she went with a song from either the last days of Roosevelt's tenure or the beginning of Truman's. Someone should find out for me. I'm not telling you the year, because it's OBVIOUS.
I think the singing warbles just a smidgin, and I saw NO EYEBROW, but it's still top tier Jordin, despite the lack of disrespect toward Bono.
Our Rank: 9.
Another Top 6 Night:
"Livin On A Prayer" - Bon Jovi.
For some reason, Idol thought it was charitable to keep that mosquito on for another week. It was not. It was also not charitable to make Jordin sing a Bon Jovi song, but again, the Emma demographic is but one person. This wasn't just mediocre like Top 20 Night - this was full blown floppage, though the whole Sideshow Bob hair really resonated with me. However, I suspect in the long run that her humility in the face of WITHERING criticism endeared her to millions and got her through a few more rounds.
"Simon, it wasn't THAT bad."
Top 4 Night:
Weird creepy songs from the Beegees.
We're ignoring. It was lame all the way around and decidedly unmemorable, with the exception of Barry Gibb's fake teeth.
To compensate for the glaring absence of Beegee covers, here is the fourth image result for "bald cat."
On a TOTALLY unrelated note:
Top Three Night:
The Judge's Pick.
"Wishing on a Star" - Rolls Royce.
Don't worry, I hadn't heard of it either. Simon decided to find an obscure band that appeared to have Roxie Roker as its frontwoman, and then make Jordin sing their one song. I think it's a very lame song that would be better served as an ironic addition to one of the Austin Powers movie sountracks, but Jordin delivers a perfectly capable performance, just not very memorable. We blame Simon.
Our Rank: 6.
So in case you're keeping track, The Jeffersons are on DVD, but Grace Under Fire and Sisters are not.
The Producers' Pick.
"She Works Hard for the Money" - Donna Summers.
THE EYEBROW IS BACK, and they finally gave Jordin a fun song to sing. I have to assume that she doesn't really know too much about the subject matter at hand, i.e., hoes, but it's LIKE she does. Props. The runs toward the end are incredible and hinge on gutteral. Take THAT, disco!
Our Rank: 8
Personal Song Pick.
"I (Who Have Nothing)" - Shirley Bassey.
Is it better than Top 11 night? It doesn't have the dorky earring shoutout, but she DOES paw at the camera early on, which ruffled my feathers slightly. Since those cancel out and she added an extra high note at the end, I'd say it's just a wee bit better the second time around. Very, very smart song selection here - hey, why not perform a song you know you can school and then tweak it a little? We love the Jordin!
Our Rank: 10.1
Top 2 Night:
Personal Song Pick:
"Fighter" - Christina Aguilera.
Remember what I said earlier about Christina? It's still true. I'm a bit disappointed that Jordin did not learn her lesson from the Mulan soundtrack fiasco, BUT it's our favorite Christina song ever. When she lets her voice go for those high notes, it's almost as good as the original. But again, NOTHING is as good as Christina.
Our Rank: 5.5 (we subtracted a point for ignoring our really great advice)
"Stay away, Jordin! I'm bad luck!"
Previous Performance Pick:
"A Broken Wing" - Skeletor.
We squealed with hardcore delight when we found out that she was reprising the Skeletor country classic. It does not have the noticable eyebrow raise, but her comfort level has understandably risen since country night, most evident in the second half of the song. However, I was ENRAGED at how loud the band was in the background in the FIRST half of the song before she really gets going, and I think it disturbs the whole process. Probably not Jordin's fault, and she was still unbelievably fantastic.
Our Rank: 11 million billion.
The New Single:
"This is My Now" - random guys from Seattle.
This is the reason I was not worried yesterday in the least. By the time she gets to the end, she's sobbing, which of course got me all worked up too, because we have been emotionally invested since the BEGINNING. But if you watch the version Blake did before her, the talent levels are not even close. The song was MADE for her. Was the crying staged? Dude, if it was, that's genius.
Our Rank: Perfect.