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Camp Should-A-Been - Season Two

Camp Should-A-Been

Ruben or Clay? Kim C. or Kim L.? Carmen or earplugs? Camp Should-A-Been revisits the many difficult choices of American Idol stormy second season. The record 36 semifinalists have been causing a ruckus in overcrowded Cabin Two, and our camp counselors have been busy daily trying to keep the peace. It's time to turn them loose onstage and see how all would've played out had America voted solely on performance, as the Season Two replay gets underway....

Results

Tuesday, June 24th, 2008

Semifinals Group One

Performance Web Rating Result
Son Of A Preacher Man0000Son Of A Preacher Man
71
 
2Safe
Love Sneakin' Up On You0000Love Sneakin' Up On You
67
 
2Safe
Come To My Window0000Come To My Window
66
 
5Wild Card
Overjoyed0000Overjoyed
55
 
5Wild Card
All In Love Is Fair0000All In Love Is Fair
34
 
7Eliminated
How Do I Live0000How Do I Live
30
 
7Eliminated
Un-Break My Heart0000Un-Break My Heart
28
 
7Eliminated
Thank You0000Thank You
11
 
7Eliminated

Julia Demato had no 3-star performances during her original Idol run, but she did have one 4-star number, and it came at the right time. At 71, her anchor-spot rendition of "Son Of A Preacher Man" was the highest-rated performance of Group One, and it earned her the first chair into the finals. The battle for second was a close one between one Lashundra Cobbins (who was going by her middle name, Trenyce) and Kim Caldwell (who curiously decided to go by her middle name as well, which is Ann, which is pretty darn dull, but it beats some of the names her bunkmates were calling her.) In the end, Trenyce advanced by the slimmest possible margin, relegating Caldwell to the Wild Card Show along with Charles Grigsby, the original second advancer out of this group.

Four campers failed to break 40, and all found themselves choosing a seat on the Bus Of Shame after the show: J.D. Adams, Meosha Denton, Patrick Fortson, and bringing up the rear, Bettis Richardson, who probably should've gone by an assumed name.

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

Semifinals Group Two

Performance Web Rating Result
Over The Rainbow0000Over The Rainbow
83
 
2Safe
Superstar0000Superstar
83
 
2Safe
Open Arms0000Open Arms
69
 
5Wild Card
You Light Up My Life0000You Light Up My Life
55
 
5Wild Card
Piece Of My Heart0000Piece Of My Heart
39
 
7Eliminated
Caught Up In The Rapture0000Caught Up In The Rapture
33
 
7Eliminated
I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)0000I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)
20
 
7Eliminated
Thank You0000Thank You
8
 
7Eliminated

As Group Two was arguably the most famous semifinals episode in Idol history, the camp counselors decided that this was a good time to do a little bit of opportunistic marketing. We put out a press release announcing that Ruben Studdard, Clay Aiken, and Kimberley Locke would be taking the stage together for the first time in five years, and we invited all major media outlets to cover the historic event. Sadly, the only camera crew to show up was from the local bird-watching association, and then only because they'd heard a nest of bobolinks had been spotted in the area. We knew those three hadn't exactly set the Billboard charts on fire with their latest albums, but this was ridiculous.

Just as they did five years earlier, Studdard and Locke handily won the night and were sent through to the finals. Aiken, who at this point was still sporting a look so geeky that his fellow campers were giving him wedgies on an hourly basis, could only accept another invitation to the Wild Card round. Joining him was another contestant who'd gone the mononym route, Hadas (real name: Lashundra Cobbins Jr.). Three campers returned home on the Bus Of Shame: Candice Coleman, Rebecca Bond, and Jacob John "Jingleheimer" Smalley, dragging an 8 with him.

As for Jennifer Fuentes, she got three notes into "I Wanna Dance When Somebody", the most notorious contestant-killing song in Idol history, when a trap door opened under her feet and sent her toppling into the Bottomless Molten Pit Of Hot Flaming Shame. When someone makes a terrible song choice here at Camp Should-A-Been, we don't fool around.

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

Semifinals Group Three

Performance Web Rating Result
Out Here On My Own0000Out Here On My Own
76
 
2Safe
It's All Coming Back To Me Now0000It's All Coming Back To Me Now
57
 
2Safe
The Way We Were0000The Way We Were
48
 
7Eliminated
One Last Cry0000One Last Cry
47
 
7Eliminated
For Your Love0000For Your Love
46
 
7Eliminated
Something He Can Feel0000Something He Can Feel
40
 
7Eliminated
Unchained Melody0000Unchained Melody
33
 
7Eliminated
How Am I Supposed To Live Without You0000How Am I Supposed To Live Without You
26
 
7Eliminated

After the drama and gravitas of the previous evening, the Group Three semifinal show was a bit of a comedown. Earning the annual earmarked slot for a pink-haired woman was Vanessa Olivarez, who led the way on the strength of a spirited 76. Joining her was the only other contestant to score above the average of 50: Kimberly Kelsey.

Afterwards, the remaining six contestants milled around backstage to see who would earn an invitation to the Wild Card Show. To their dismay, the Bus Of Shame arrived for all of them, including Rickey Smith, the first original finalist to be eliminated in the replay. Also dismissed were Equoia Coleman, who cornered the market in vowels but not in rating points, Jordan Segundo, Samantha Cohen (real name: Lashundra Cobbins-Smythe), George Trice, and Louis Gazzara. Gazzara's 26 was quite respectable for a last-place finisher, but then again, if it's respect you're after, you've enrolled at the wrong summer camp.

Friday, June 27th, 2008

Semifinals Group Four

Performance Web Rating Result
I'll Be0000I'll Be
83
 
2Safe
Foolish Heart0000Foolish Heart
65
 
2Safe
A Song For You0000A Song For You
55
 
5Wild Card
Open My Heart0000Open My Heart
47
 
7Eliminated
When I See You Smile0000When I See You Smile
43
 
7Eliminated
Didn't We Almost Have It All0000Didn't We Almost Have It All
19
 
7Eliminated
Touch Me In The Morning0000Touch Me In The Morning
16
 
7Eliminated
What About The Children0000What About The Children
2
 
7Eliminated

The rumor spread like wildfire through the bunks and cabins of Camp Should-A-Been this afternoon. A camper said she'd spotted Frenchie Davis and her entourage entering the Head Counselors' office through the back door. Had we decided to un-disqualify the putative front-runner and allow her to sing in her rightful spot in the Group Four semifinals? The audience was buzzing with excitement as they took their seats for the evening's replay.

As it happens, they were bitterly disappointed. Up on stage, Juanita Barber reprised her nearly-no-star rendition of "What About The Children" in Davis's spot, complete with the legendary poor diction and the infamous post-performance argument with the judges (ending when she threw a pine cone at Randy Jackson.) Josh Gracin and Corey Clark advanced to the Final 12 as before, each delivering by far his best performance of the competition. Chip Days earned his second invitation to the Wild Card Show, but unlike before, Nasheka Siddall (real name: Trenyce) didn't get the call this time around.

Boarding the Bus Of Shame tonight along with Siddall were Patrick Lake and the 1-star trio of Sylvia Chibiliti, Ashley Hartman, and of course, Barber, who spent the entire trip home arguing with the bus driver over the best route to take. ("Do you know who I am? I invented GPS navigational systems!") As for Davis, the rumors were true: she did stop by the camp this morning, but only to apply for a job opening in the camp kitchen. We declined, not because of any racy nude photos, but because the sample meatloaf she prepared was way too edible for any self-respecting summer camp.

Sunday, June 29th, 2008

Wild Card Show

Performance Web Rating Result
Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me0000Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me
91
 
2Safe
Angel0000Angel
65
 
2Safe
Rock With You0000Rock With You
58
 
2Safe
What About The Children (Club Remix) *0000What About The Children (Club Remix) *
50
 
2Safe
My Heart Will Go On *0000My Heart Will Go On *
50
 
7Eliminated
I Feel The Earth Move0000I Feel The Earth Move
46
 
7Eliminated
We Belong0000We Belong
22
 
7Eliminated
Can't Fight The Moonlight0000Can't Fight The Moonlight
22
 
7Eliminated
Because You Loved Me0000Because You Loved Me
17
 
7Eliminated

It remains one of AI's enduring mysteries as to how four young, pretty, female contestants appeared from out of the blue to compete on the Wild Card Show. At Camp Should-A-Been, however, we just follow the script that the producers laid out. The foursome of Aliceyn Cooney, Janine Falsone, Carmen Rasmusen, and Olivia Mojica were conjured up to perform with the five Wild Card invitees from the previous episodes, with the final four spots in the Top 12 up for grabs.

Given a second chance, Clay Aiken had no problems advancing on the strength of his showstopping rendition of "Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me." He earned the "Reviewers' Choice" pick, but things got a bit hairy when we moved to the judges' choices. Per camp rules, Randy, Paula, and Simon were compelled to choose the second- through fourth-best performers of the night, an obligation that violated their genetic instincts to make the stupidest Wild Card choices possible. Simon actually attempted to select Rasmusen five times before we finally sedated him and carried him back to his cabin. Randy chose Cooney, the best of the newcomers by far, while Paula tried to choose Leah LaBelle. We carried Ms. Abdul back to her cabin too, but we didn't sedate her first; she enjoys it too much.

Chip Days' second solid performance earned him slot #11, at which point another headache ensued. Charles Grigsby and Hadas wound up in a dead tie for the twelfth and final spot, based on their projected ratings! So how would you break the deadlock? On the one hand, Grigsby's subsequent finals performances were known to be rather weak; weaker than Hadas's projected ratings would be were she to advance. But against that, Grigsby did earn the original spot in the finals based on the viewers' vote. In the end, we went into the WNTS.com database and drew out their opening round ratings to a first decimal point. And, by a margin of 0.5 points, Grigsby took the final chair. The biggest shock of the semifinal phase: two Kimberlys advanced to the finals as before, but neither were named Caldwell.

That makes the Final 12 of Camp Should-A-Been's AI2 replay:

  • Clay Aiken
  • Corey Clark
  • Aliceyn Cooney
  • Chip Days
  • Julia DeMato
  • Josh Gracin
  • Charles Grigsby
  • Kimberly Kelsey
  • Kimberley Locke
  • Vanessa Olivarez
  • Ruben Studdard
  • Trenyce

Newcomers in italics. Failing to qualify: Kimberly Caldwell, Carmen Rasmusen, Rickey Smith

Monday, June 30th, 2008

Final 12 (Motown)

Performance Web Rating Result
I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)0000I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)
83
 
2Safe
Come See About Me0000Come See About Me
81
 
2Safe
Baby, I Need Your Loving0000Baby, I Need Your Loving
78
 
2Safe
Baby, I Need Your Loving *0000Baby, I Need Your Loving *
59
 
2Safe
Baby, I Need Your Loving0000Baby, I Need Your Loving
56
 
2Safe
Baby, I Need Your Loving *0000Baby, I Need Your Loving *
51
 
2Safe
Baby, I Need Your Loving *0000Baby, I Need Your Loving *
51
 
2Safe
You Keep Me Hangin' On0000You Keep Me Hangin' On
43
 
2Safe
This Old Heart Of Mine0000This Old Heart Of Mine
36
 
2Safe
Where Did Our Love Go0000Where Did Our Love Go
36
 
4Bottom Group
Heat Wave0000Heat Wave
35
 
4Bottom Group
How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)0000How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)
29
 
7Eliminated

Clay Aiken topped the ratings for a second consecutive week as the Finals kicked off with Motown Night. Trenyce, who threatened the camp staff with immense bodily harm if we made any more dumb jokes about her name, was a close second, and Ruben Studdard was third. The middle of the show was a bit monotonous, as five consecutive contestants all happened to choose the same song, ultimately resulting in a near-crazed audience chasing Kimberly Kelsey off the stage and into the lake. Nonetheless, she and the other three newcomers all advanced safely to the next round.

Charles Grigsby advanced to the Finals by the skin of his teeth, but his reprieve lasted only one week. His mediocre cover of "How Sweet It Is" earned him a one-way ticket on the Bus Of Shame. Note carefully who would have been sent home tonight had Hadas rather than Grigsby earned the last spot in the Top 12 (and recall that it was a mere one-half-point margin that separated them.) Will this have any bearing on how the rest of the Camp Should-A-Been competition plays out? We shall see, but we shall see....

Tuesday, July 1st, 2008

Final 11 (Movie Hits)

Performance Web Rating Result
A Whole New World0000A Whole New World
91
 
2Safe
I Have Nothing0000I Have Nothing
87
 
2Safe
Somewhere Out There0000Somewhere Out There
82
 
2Safe
I Don't Want To Miss A Thing0000I Don't Want To Miss A Thing
69
 
2Safe
Home0000Home
68
 
2Safe
Blame Canada *0000Blame Canada *
54
 
2Safe
Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life *0000Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life *
53
 
2Safe
Lose Yourself *0000Lose Yourself *
46
 
2Safe
It's Hard Out Here For A Pimp *0000It's Hard Out Here For A Pimp *
46
 
4Bottom Group
Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now)0000Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now)
21
 
4Bottom Group
Flashdance...What A Feeling0000Flashdance...What A Feeling
19
 
7Eliminated

Success! After weeks of nonstop marketing, the Camp Should-A-Been counselors finally signed a one-night television deal with a major American network. OK, it was just The Weather Channel, but one has to start somewhere. Alas, our three newcomer finalists plus holdover Vanessa Olivarez didn't get the memo that they'd be on national TV this evening. They each chose a famous Movie Hit that required so many obscene words to be bleeped out, the performance sounded as if it were in Morse Code. Worse, when Corey Clark and Bus Of Shame rider Julia Demato took the stage, the sound engineers shuddered and bleeped out their entire performances.

Despite the Bottom Two's rough sledding, this was still quite a strong night. Ruben Studdard's showstopping magic carpet ride led the way, part of the first trio of consecutive 5-star performances in Idol history. (The feat wasn't duplicated until Lennon-McCartney Night of AI7.) In fact, the original Final 5 all delivered 4-star or better ratings. But the most shocking, most juicy, most unforgettable moment in all of American Idol history came at the very end of the show, when in a fit of rage, Corey Clark leaped off the stage, went straight up to Paula Abdul, and— (And now, your local forecast on the 8s from The Weather Channel...)

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2008

Final 10 (Country Rock)

Performance Web Rating Result
I Can't Make You Love Me0000I Can't Make You Love Me
82
 
2Safe
Sweet Home Alabama0000Sweet Home Alabama
74
 
2Safe
Someone Else's Star0000Someone Else's Star
52
 
2Safe
She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy *0000She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy *
49
 
2Safe
I Got Friends In Low Places *0000I Got Friends In Low Places *
48
 
2Safe
Ain't Goin' Down ('Til The Sun Comes Up)0000Ain't Goin' Down ('Til The Sun Comes Up)
43
 
2Safe
Convoy *0000Convoy *
42
 
2Safe
My Girl Stole My Truck *0000My Girl Stole My Truck *
42
 
4Bottom Group
I Need You0000I Need You
38
 
4Bottom Group
Drift Away0000Drift Away
30
 
7Eliminated

What's a summer camp without a Country music night? Most campers got into the spirit of things, showing up at the ampitheater in cowboy boots and hats. We asked the suits from 19E to book The Clark Brothers to serve as the backup band, but some sort of clerical mixup occurred and we wound up with Randy, Paula, and Simon on washboard, jug, and spoons, respectively. Paula was particularly ticked off when she learned that the jug was empty.

Kimberley Locke led the way with a 5-star cover of "I Can't Make You Love Me," but she was one of just three contestants to break 50 on the evening. All three newcomers plus Vanessa Olivarez are still alive, though their approval ratings have decayed to the point where they surely won't last much longer. Trenyce stumbled dangerously, winding up in the Bottom Three for the first time. But bidding adieu this evening: camp prankster Corey Clark, who drifted away on the Bus Of Shame just hours before the camp counselors were set to expel him for short-sheeting Nigel Lythgoe's bed.

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

Final 9 (Disco)

Performance Web Rating Result
It's Raining Men0000It's Raining Men
78
 
2Safe
Can't Get Enough Of Your Love, Babe0000Can't Get Enough Of Your Love, Babe
71
 
2Safe
Everlasting Love0000Everlasting Love
60
 
2Safe
I'm Every Woman0000I'm Every Woman
56
 
2Safe
Boogie Oogie Oogie *0000Boogie Oogie Oogie *
44
 
2Safe
Shake Your Body Down To The Ground *0000Shake Your Body Down To The Ground *
43
 
2Safe
Disco (That's Where The Happy People Go) *0000Disco (That's Where The Happy People Go) *
38
 
4Bottom Group
Born To Be Alive *0000Born To Be Alive *
38
 
4Bottom Group
Celebration0000Celebration
8
 
7Eliminated

Last night's elimination of Corey Clark saddled the staff of Camp Should-A-Been with some serious procedural and existential dilemmas as we prepared for the Final 9 episode. Chief among them: there was no Final 9 episode in AI2! There were two Final 8 shows, with no one eliminated from the first (though a Bottom Three was announced.) Would it be fair to send any original finalist home tonight on a performance that, back in the day, was essentially done just for practice?

Fortunately, when everyone re-listened to the single-digit mess that Lance Corporal Joshua Gracin made of "Celebration", the answer was unanimous: to the Bus with him! (If you're wondering, the decision had no effect on the ultimate winner, or even who made the Final 5.) As for the rest of the night...um, yeah. Why Idol insists on having a Disco theme most seasons is another of life's little mysteries, unless it's to remind viewers how grotesquely inane some disco song titles could be.

Friday, July 4th, 2008

Final 8 (Billboard #1 Hits)

Performance Web Rating Result
Kiss And Say Goodbye0000Kiss And Say Goodbye
88
 
2Safe
At This Moment0000At This Moment
66
 
2Safe
My Heart Will Go On0000My Heart Will Go On
65
 
2Safe
The Power Of Love0000The Power Of Love
62
 
2Safe
Forever Your Girl *0000Forever Your Girl *
40
 
2Safe
Straight Up *0000Straight Up *
39
 
4Bottom Group
Opposites Attract *0000Opposites Attract *
34
 
4Bottom Group
Macarena *0000Macarena *
34
 
7Eliminated

Fourth Of July festivities at Camp Should-A-Been featured the fabled patriotic foursome of baseball, hot dogs, apple pie, and Ford. (They're the big sponsor, so deal with it.) Sadly, the camp softball game ended with a benches-clearing brawl in the fourth inning after Kevin Covais hit David Archuleta with a pitch, though to be quite honest, the sight of Idols brawling is not particularly frightening. They mostly just milled around and insulted each other's body piercings. The hot dogs were tasteless as usual, and the apple pie sent three dozen campers to the dispensary with food poisoning. Would the evening's show make up for it all?

Our four remaining original contestants each turned in a 4-star performance, so it was time to say our first goodbye to a newcomer. Of these, the ladies each chose a Billboard #1 Hit by the same certain artist, which left all three of our judges in tears. Paula was overwhelmed to hear her old songs again; Randy and Simon happened to have had the apple pie for dessert. Heading home on the Bus Of Shame was Chip Days, whose approval rating was fractionally lower than Kimberly Kelsey's. Incidentally, while an Idol baseball brawl isn't scary, watching American Idols doing the Macarena is enough to make you wish for another slice of pie.

Sunday, July 6th, 2008

Final 7 (Billy Joel)

Performance Web Rating Result
New York State Of Mind0000New York State Of Mind
92
 
2Safe
Tell Her About It0000Tell Her About It
72
 
2Safe
Just The Way You Are0000Just The Way You Are
64
 
2Safe
Baby Grand0000Baby Grand
55
 
2Safe
We Didn't Start The Fire *0000We Didn't Start The Fire *
36
 
4Bottom Group
Scenes From An Italian Restaurant *0000Scenes From An Italian Restaurant *
35
 
4Bottom Group
Captain Jack *0000Captain Jack *
31
 
7Eliminated

It took us several weeks, but the brain trust at Camp Should-A-Been finally figured out why our TV ratings were nonexistent thus far. We hadn't brought in any celebrity mentors! Thus, our camp disciplinary staff – Viktor, Rocco, and Serge – were dispatched to New York City to invite Billy Joel himself to help judge his theme night's replay. Joel politely declined at first, but the boys ultimately persuaded him that it would be, ah, in his best interests to attend. (We didn't actually untie him for the show, but we did take his gag off so that the contestants could hear his critiques.)

Once again, the four holdovers turned in solid performances, so another newcomer had her Bus ticket punched. The 90-second time limit hampered both Vanessa Olivarez and Aliceyn Cooney, who unwisely chose songs that didn't compress well, to say the least. But it was Kimberly Kelsey who brought up the rear by singing Joel's most off-color, R-rated tune, leaving producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick twitching in horror and pulling out their hair. In other words, it was one of our best nights yet!

Monday, July 7th, 2008

Final 6 (Diane Warren Songs)

Performance Web Rating Result
If You Asked Me To0000If You Asked Me To
74
 
2Safe
I Could Not Ask For More0000I Could Not Ask For More
74
 
2Safe
Music Of My Heart0000Music Of My Heart
59
 
2Safe
Have You Ever0000Have You Ever
43
 
4Bottom Group
Un-Break My Heart *0000Un-Break My Heart *
32
 
4Bottom Group
Blame It On The Rain *0000Blame It On The Rain *
32
 
7Eliminated

Scandal hit Camp Should-A-Been during the Diane Warren Songs replay episode. For the umpteenth straight night, the Big Four of Clay Aiken, Ruben Studdard, Kimberley Locke, and The Artist Formerly Known As Lashundra Cobbins turned in the night's top performances. That left Vanessa Olivarez and Aliceyn Cooney to battle for the fifth and final spot in the multiple-song phase of the competition. And, to add to the drama, both finished with an identical approval rating of 32.

But wait! It was discovered midway through her performance that Cooney wasn't actually singing her cover of Milli Vanilli's "Blame It On The Rain" – as did the infamous original artists, she was in fact lip-synching. Who was the mystery vocalist? Just like in the climactic scene of Singin' In The Rain, we raised the curtains behind her as she sang, and it was revealed to be...Paula Abdul? We couldn't put Cooney on the bus fast enough.

Tuesday, July 8th, 2008

Final 5 (1960s / Neil Sedaka)

Performance Web Rating Result
Build Me Up Buttercup0000Build Me Up Buttercup
94
 
2Safe
Solitaire0000Solitaire
92
 
2Safe
Where The Boys Are0000Where The Boys Are
85
 
2Safe
Love Will Keep Ups Together0000Love Will Keep Ups Together
75
 
2Safe
Proud Mary0000Proud Mary
74
 
2Safe
Breaking Up Is Hard To Do0000Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
59
 
4Bottom Group
Ain't Too Proud To Beg0000Ain't Too Proud To Beg
44
 
4Bottom Group
I Heard It Through The Grapevine0000I Heard It Through The Grapevine
43
 
2Safe
Stairway To Heaven *0000Stairway To Heaven *
29
 
7Eliminated
Leaving On A Jet Plane *0000Leaving On A Jet Plane *
26
 
7Eliminated

No contestant in American Idol history ever enjoyed a night like Clay Aiken's in the AI2 Final Five. A fresh haircut and some stylish new outfits turned the dorky North Carolinian into a dapper stage pro, and he responded by dropping a pair of 90+ showstoppers – the first and so far only time the feat has been accomplished. His bunkmates were so impressed that they shook his hand and complimented him profusely before giving him his regularly scheduled wedgie and tying him to a tree. Guest mentor Neil Sedaka once again wept after "Solitaire" and said that he'd lost his song to Aiken forever, that the forest squirrels were trying to kill him, and that he could feel polka-dotted snipes nibbling at his toes. Our fault – we shouldn't have seated him where he might accidentally drink out of Paula's Coke cup.

It was considered an outrage at the time that Ruben Studdard wound up in the Bottom Two, but here at Camp Should-A-Been, Studdard earned that dishonor sans the outrage. As for Vanessa Olivarez, her cover of Sedaka's 1960 hit "Stairway To Heaven" (no, not that one) wasn't well received, probably because Olivarez threw a righteous guitar solo in the middle of a doo-wop song. Still, Olivarez went from 12th originally to fifth in the replay. Her final song choice suggested that she'd hoped her brilliant run warranted nicer accommodations for her trip home, but alas, she got the Bus Of Shame like everyone else.

Wednesday, July 9th, 2008

Final 4 (Bee Gees)

Performance Web Rating Result
To Love Somebody0000To Love Somebody
88
 
4Bottom Group
Let's Stay Together *0000Let's Stay Together *
82
 
2Safe
How Can You Mend A Broken Heart0000How Can You Mend A Broken Heart
78
 
2Safe
(The Lights Went Out In) Massachusetts *0000(The Lights Went Out In) Massachusetts *
59
 
2Safe
Nights On Broadway0000Nights On Broadway
57
 
2Safe
Grease0000Grease
42
 
4Bottom Group
I Just Want To Be Your Everything0000I Just Want To Be Your Everything
41
 
7Eliminated
Emotion0000Emotion
35
 
7Eliminated

The Final Four replay at Camp Should-A-Been brought one of the stranger results of the competition thus far. Clay Aiken delivered a near-showstopping rendition of "To Love Somebody", which was comfortably the highest-rated performance of Bee Gees Night ... and he still wound up in the Bottom Two! Part of the problem was that when he donned his red leather jacket for "Grease", his bunkmates lined up halfway across the campground to give him wedgies. Meanwhile, Trenyce's first projected rating was a solid 59, and she still had her original 5-star Wild Card performance of "Let's Stay Together" in her back pocket. (Ms. Cobbins advanced directly from her semifinal group to the Final 12, you'll recall.) Studdard turned in two solid numbers, leaving original third-place finisher Kimberley Locke as the evening's passenger on the Bus Of Shame.

Aiken wasn't terribly happy about his first sojourn to the Bottom Two, but he mentioned to Studdard on the way back to their cabin that with K-Lo out of the picture and Trenyce into her projected ratings, a Ruben-vs.-Clay rematch in the Finale now seemed, ahem, a Locke. Just at that moment, however, a camper looking into the heavens casually observed that the clouds were starting to part, and that tomorrow ought to be truly a starry, starry night. Aiken promptly went into convulsions and was kept overnight at the camp dispensary for observation.

Thursday, July 10th, 2008

Final 3 (Random / Judges / Idol)

Performance Web Rating Result
Mack The Knife0000Mack The Knife
74
 
2Safe
Unchained Melody0000Unchained Melody
63
 
2Safe
Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)0000Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)
56
 
2Safe
The Closer I Get To You *0000The Closer I Get To You *
54
 
7Eliminated
If Ever You're In My Arms Again0000If Ever You're In My Arms Again
53
 
2Safe
Closer To Fine *0000Closer To Fine *
49
 
7Eliminated
Smile0000Smile
45
 
2Safe
Closer To Free *0000Closer To Free *
45
 
7Eliminated
Vincent0000Vincent
15
 
2Safe

The denizens of Camp Should-A-Been awoke on the morning of the Final Three replay to find that the campgrounds had been vandalized overnight. On every cabin, every signpost, and every tree, someone had spray-painted the words "Now I understand." Suspicion immediately fell upon one Clayton Aiken, who denied responsibility vehemently despite his paint-covered hands and clothes. But he was overheard telling his buddy Ruben Studdard during lunch that there was no stinking way he was going to famously forget that line from "Vincent" a second time....

The good news for you Claymates: he didn't. The bad news: he forgot the first line instead, "Starry, starry night." It wound up as another ride on Train Wreck 15, but with Kimberley Locke gone, Aiken's other two performances became the top two scorers on the night. Studdard and Trenyce each had three performances right around average. It was the closest photo-finish imaginable, and then some. When we added up the scores, they came out thusly: Studdard, 154 points. Aiken, 152 points. And Trenyce...ouch. 148 points, and a Bus token home. Perhaps they didn't get the order of elimination quite right, but the voters seem to have chosen the most deserving Final Two. Tune in tomorrow night for Ruben-vs.-Clay Part Deux, as Camp Should-A-Been's AI2 replay concludes....

Friday, July 11th, 2008

Finale

Performance Web Rating Result
Bridge Over Troubled Water0000Bridge Over Troubled Water
86
 
2Safe
This Is The Night0000This Is The Night
55
 
2Safe
Imagine0000Imagine
54
 
7Eliminated
Flying Without Wings0000Flying Without Wings
51
 
7Eliminated
A House Is Not A Home0000A House Is Not A Home
39
 
7Eliminated
Here, There & Everywhere0000Here, There & Everywhere
39
 
2Safe

A choir. We'd need a choir. But where could we hire one on short notice? We called a few rental centers, but they just hung up on us. We asked at the local church, the local high school, and even at a karaoke bar in town. No luck. So we told Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard that if they wanted backup singers for the AI2 Finale replay, they'd have to talk some of their fellow campers into donning purple robes for the night. Aiken immediately lined up Carrie Underwood, Melinda Doolittle, and LaToya London. Studdard recruited Sanjaya Malakar, William Hung, and Juanita Barber (who spent most of the night arguing with Rickey Minor about what key to use.) Amazed by Studdard's utter inability to evaluate vocal talent, Nigel Lythgoe immediately offered him a spot on the AI judges' panel for Season Eight.

No matter. With or without a choir, Aiken's rendition of "Bridge Over Troubled Water" was always going to be the highlight of the night. And this time, there would be no controversy about the oversaturated phone lines. By a solid point margin, and despite a couple of close calls along the way, a beaming Clay Aiken earned the Season Two championship at Camp Should-A-Been. Runner-up Studdard cheerfully gave his buddy the traditional Winner's Wedgie onstage after the results were announced (hey, traditions have to start somewhere.) And as the Bus Of Shame Victory pulled away, Aiken dreamed of the renewed riches, fame, and fortune that awaited him now that he was a bona fide American Idol champion. Little did he know that in three years' time, his only regular gig would be as the headliner at the lounge of the Greensboro Holiday Inn, where he'd be performing under the stage name of C. Lashundra Cobbins.

—   The End   —

Camp Should-A-Been – Season Two Results

  1. Clay Aiken
  2. Ruben Studdard
  3. Trenyce
  4. Kimberley Locke
  5. Vanessa Olivarez
  6. Aliceyn Cooney
  7. Kimberly Kelsey
  8. Chip Days
  9. Joshua Gracin
  10. Corey Clark
  11. Julia Demato
  12. Charles Grigsby

-- The staff of WNTS.com

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