Wednesday, February 26, 2014

American Idol 13: Ranking the Top 13

Every year I like to take a moment a few days before the Finals begin and really dig deep into some of these contestants. Talent, vocal ability, personality, and other artistic qualities that make a contestant a contender shed light onto where exactly we - as an addicted audience - stand currently at this point in the competition. Now, I'd like to emphasize the word current as contestants placement will no doubt start fluctuating as early as this week.

American Idol 10: Ranking the Top 13
American Idol 11: Ranking the Top 13
American Idol 12: Ranking the Top 10

Let's get on with it. As I usually say, we are about to embark on a ten-week sprint to the finish line!

13. Kristen O'Connor

Kristen is most likely the contestant to be eliminated this week. She was a wild card choice and while her voice is pleasant and powerful, it's not always the most dependable. She has no memorable personality, and she’s been eliminated once and it’s very likely history will repeat itself sooner than later. Frankly, contestants like her NEVER win American Idol. The odds are against her.

12. Emily Piriz

Emily's chances in this competition is a bit tricky. On one hand, I find her a little generic, but with a powerful instrument, and on the other hand, I see the possibility of her having a serious growth arc throughout the season and being able to pull maybe a Haley Reinhart and go a long way. It will take me a few more weeks before I can fully decide, unless of course she get eliminated early on.

11. CJ Harris

He’s got a very unique soulful voice and has a great look, but until he's able to deliver a good performance without his guitar and veer away from being a one trick pony, then he’ll just remain an “also-ran.” So, if and when that happens, we’ll have to move him up in the rankings, but until then, he’ll stay in the lower tier. Besides, he's another wildcard pick, and when you’ve already come up short in the votes once, it’s going to be even harder.

10. Jessica Meuse

I can't quite put my finger on it, but my gut says Jessica is going to quickly disappoint us. I don't know. I'm obsessed with her tone and she has an artistry that's all on her own, but her last performance came off as just a good karaoke number. I will not underestimate her just yet though as she has a tremendous dark horse factor, but she needs to have a concrete strategy on how to win this thing because as it is, I don’t think she already has the right parts to build a win.

09. Caleb Johnson

Caleb was a hard contestant to figure out. At times, he screams "middle of the pack" contestant, but there are moment where, he could potentially harness a dangerous mix of young and older female voters to propel him into the later rounds. I admit, I wasn't really a fan, but he probably has the most potential to grow in the competition out of any of the male contestants. I’d love to see what happens when he tones it down and sings a ballad. Will it be brilliant or will his natural tendencies to over do it take control? We'll see.

08. Malaya Watson
The personality is stellar and she has a powerhouse vocals, but something tells me that she’s still struggling to find out how she should use it in the competition. Yes, her Hard Times was an inspired song choice - I think she's more creative and versatile than people realize - but now that she is a finalist she will need to pull of some nuance to her performances. If Malaya can control her voice a little more, then she could easily make the Top 6 in this competition.

07. Dexter Roberts

I don't get him. He's not my cup of tea, but Dexter is male, sings country music, and plays the guitar. So yes, he's in a good position to do damage. I mean, we all know country voters are a loyal and powerful weapon, and maybe other than CJ and Jessica, Dexter is the true country option this season. After years of following this show, I've learned to trust my gut and I can say that this guy will be around for a good long while, so get used to him. Don't ask me why, I just know it. I would love to be wrong though.

06. MK Nobilette

When she blasted out a fantastic rendition of All Of Me, I knew that she earned her space in the finals. Did we know this coming in? Of course not! MK has been flying under the radar for the most part and she has had a rather seamless ride so far and somehow, I feel like her fanbase has been growing at a respectable pace. Vocally and stylistically, she's in a different league from the rest of the girls and that will make her stand out. I just wonder though if her understated performances will be enough to keep her in the competition.

05. Jena Irene

If it were not for her absolutely stellar wild card performance of Unbreakable Me - her original song - she would have been ranked much lower, but I guess she might have made herself a contender just by the sheer brilliance of that performance. I don't know, but there's a maturity with how she embodies her song with a voice strong enough to bring power to an appropriate emotion. Sure, she wasn't voted in, but if she can turn in a few more performances like this, she’ll be a powerful contestant. Think, Allison Iraheta.

04. Ben Briley

There's something about Ben that excites me. He has a soulful tone with enough grit and edge to make it recognizable and his personality is goofy and playful, and he doesn’t shy away from anything to entertain his audience. I have a strong feeling though that Ben is going to have to fight, scratch, and claw his way to the top without ever dropping his cheerful disposition, because America is a fickle mistress and could easily grow tired of his unique qualities. So, could Ben win this thing? Absolutely! It will all depend on how smart he is with his song choices. 

03. Alex Preston

Alex is a brilliant musician with a unique, soulful voice, and a shy personality that makes him endearing. He's got a great advantage because his voice is so memorable. If I heard the television from across the room I would know right away who was singing and that gives him an identity. If he manages to pick popular modern songs that the audience relates to, then he would have a comfortable niche for himself on this program. They need to watch out for this dude.

02. Majesty Rose

Majesty is becoming one of the most talked about contestants from the girls this season, and deservingly so. Her vocals have been close to flawless - save for her Hollywood edit - and she is very easy to cheer on. There's a warmth to her and an exuberance that's compelling and contagious. If she can maintain her current momentum, then it is incredibly possible that she come from behind and earn the gold away from -

01. Sam Woolf

This is Sam's competition to lose. I’ve said this time and time again and I still believe that he could potentially win this competition rather easily. He hasn’t had a bad moment yet and he has all of the voting demographics needed to become the next American Idol. He is poised, young, energized, professional, mature, and has a voice that navigates a song with ease. His path to the Kodak theater is practically a straight line. The girls are going to have their hands full trying to bring him down. I believe it can be done, but this year, we’re in for another fight.


Anonymous said...

i approve this rank. likee i so dont get it why kristen is chosen rather than Briana or Matthew.

This is quite a diversed season, ahh i dont care 'bout the rest of the contestants as long as there are jena, majesty, sam and alex left.

- k

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...