American Idol: The Top 9 Take it to the 80s!

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The 80s have come and gone, but tonight American Idol is taking us back to the days of big hair bands, Aqua Net, and Boy George!

The Top 9 will take the stage for 80s week with Mr. Karma Chameleon himself serving as mentor and guest performer. Since the judges saved Qaasim Middleton last week there are two contestants going home tonight.

Let's find out who they are now!

Idol Top 9 - American Idol

Totally coveting Boy George's eyebrows, guys. That's my takeaway from "Karma Chameleon."

Daniel Seavey​ is safe. With this announcement he also becomes the person who has gone first most often in this year's competition. AND he was born in 1999 so that makes me feel old. He's chosen a Hall and Oates song "You Make My Dreams Come True." This song choice is pretty great for him and Boy George's advice is that he sing from his stomach instead of his chest. It's good advice and this is his strongest performance yet. 

Keith said Daniel looks good on camera and he needs to be as loose in the beginning of his performances as he is at the beginning. Jennifer said the audience loves him and she loved this performance. Harry asked what Daniel loves about performing and he says "making people happy." 7.5/10

Up next to kick it 80s style is Quentin Alexander who had his eyes closed the whole time and didn't even realize his chair had lit up. Instead of Prince, which would have been perrrrrrrrfect, Quentin's singing Phil Collins "In The Air Tonight." Probably a solid choice. It's got the slow, haunting thing he's good at but he's still having some pitch issues, but it's super cool. Jennifer seems to love it and actually tries talking to him while he's up there. 

Jennifer thought his "cool factor" was on "1,000." She loves his originality. Harry loves that Quentin digs into the lyrics and loved that he did it again tonight, but he needs to pick up the pace a little. Keith loved it too. 8.5/10

Joey Cook, who is looking lovely in iridescent lavender, is safe. She's made the best song choice possible with Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Want To Have Fun." It's impossible not to feel a little infected by her joy on the stage but there are a few parts of this arrangement where the song goes down when it should go up. She does a little too much jumping around so her vocals get lost in her choreography. 

Harry thought she felt too distracted. Keith felt inconsistencies in her performance but knows that Nicole and the girls are dancing at home. Jennifer loved the outfit but felt the same as the guys about the performance. Boy George came out to give her a hug and offer her tea. 7/10

Tyanna Jones is safe! Not that there was ever any doubt, but just in case. She's going Whitney with "I Wanna Dance With Somebody." She's back on her game after an off week last week. This girl is my absolute favorite, in it to win it, going all the way contestant. I damn near gave her a Standing O in my living room.

Keith thought Boy George did great mentoring but wants her to ease into the performances a little and drop the worry. Jennifer tells her to do what she knows she was born to do. Harry loved the arrangement and thought it made the song feel more current and says that Tyanna's in the driver's seat. 10/10

Also heading into the Top 9 is Jax. She's going rock with Bon Jovi's "You Give Love A Bad Name" on the piano. The arrangement is fantastic and completely updates the song, but she's going to get critique about changing the melody so dramatically. I, however, mostly loved it. She should've kept it behind the piano completely, but that's my only complaint.

Jennifer felt all the 80s punk attitude from Jax tonight and loved it. Harry agrees with me. She should've played piano the whole time. As it was she got lost in the guitars. Keith advises her not to be afraid to change things when they aren't working. He didn't love how the arrangement came together. 9/10

Nick Fradiani is sticking around. He's chosen Michael Jackson's "Man In The Mirror" but he's not coming across well with Boy George in rehearsals. Boy George wants him to own his hotness just like J.Lo suggested last week. He has a little pitch problem in one of the opening bars...and in a few of the latter ones. He's just preaching it up there, laying it on the line. I don't even know what but I feel like I should change my ways now.

Harry called it a perfect song choice and a fantastic vocal. He's decided Nick's style is the humble guy who doesn't know he's hot. Keith compliments his smile and says that smiling would help him loosen up. Jennifer got caught up in the end when he really started singing to the audience instead of thinking about the song. 9/10

Nashville boy Clark Beckham is still in the game! He's going with "Every Breath You Take." Here's hoping he can make the song sound NOT stalkerish. So far, so good. In fact, this is pretty spectacular. He made the choice to drop all the backing instruments and play the piano while he sings. Watching him play and sing at the same time is my favorite thing about him. What happens with this song is that when it's stripped down the meaning changes in positive ways. Good performance.

Keith complimented his decision to stick with the original key and loved that he felt Clark's heart. Jennifer thought he made America feel everything, including her goosies. Harry says all he has to do is stand and sing and he'll be fine. No theatrics necessary. We'll be watching him next week. 10/10

After being saved last week, Qaasim Middleton is sticking around for another song. He's going to be singing Robert Palmer's "Addicted To Love." He promised to sing more than he danced if he got to stay for another week and he's delivering on that promise. He feels just under the band and like the key is a smidge too low, but it's great to see him do something different. Plus, he really can sing and it's important that America knows that.

Jennifer loved it and loved how he held back and just gave us a song. Harry thought it was a fantastic choice to scale back from the theatrical performance and just sing. Keith loved the quality of Qaasim's voice and wants Qaasim to have more confidence in his voice. 9/10

The last contestant into the Top 9 is...Rayvon Owen. Neither Maddie Walker nor Adanna Duru will be singing a swan song since there is no longer a save in play. Rayvon, however, will be singing "Everybody Wants To Rule the World." Boy George tells him to stop being so damn perfect. This was a terrible song choice, mostly because he chose it simply for the falsetto in the middle. There's no emotion in his performance, which is what the judges want from him. He's a wedding singer paid to sing and entertain but in the background and that's what he does every week. 

Harry says he delivers a strong vocal every week but not a strong interpretation but he felt like this one was better. Keith thought it was a beautiful song and wants him to ease into it. Jennifer advises him not to be afraid to go outside his comfort zone, referencing his comment that he would stay in his lane despite the critique from the mentors. 7.5/10

Qaasim's risk will probably pay off. He was voted out because he wasn't showcasing his voice and this week he did that. Good call. Clark Beckham and Tyanna Jones are also on top this week. Those two are my picks to be in the finale. 

Daniel Seavey keeps winning the tween vote and given the news that Zayn Malik is leaving One Direction and the tween crowd is otherwise occupied tonight, he might take a hit this week. Joey Cook had an off night as well, but her fanbase is likely strong enough to keep her here another week.

We'll find out next Wednesday night when American Idol returns!


Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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Miranda Wicker was a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. She retired in 2017. Follow her on Twitter.

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