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This is what we feared.

Following a terrible performance by Danny Gokey on Monday night, the judges refused to actually call the singer out for his awful rendition of Aerosmith's "Dream On." It was clear Fox was doing everything in its power to ensure a Gokey/Adam Lambert final.

Looks like the network will get its wish, as Allison Iraheta was eliminated this week.

Incredibly, 35 minutes elapsed during this drawn-out hour before Ryan Seacrest started the elimination process. He didn't name a bottom two, as Kris Allen was the first finalist to be told he was safe and Ryan said the names were drawn at random.

From there, Adam joined Kris, followed by Danny.

As for the night’s guest performers, they included No Doubt former Idol contestant Chris Daughtry (who can sympathize with Iraheta's early elimination, while also offering her comfort and hope), as well as Paula Abdul herself.

The judge and a slew of male dancers ran through fog and red-fabric flames for her new single “I’m Just Here for the Music.” At the end, in a strange, possibly foretelling sign, one of the dancers, pretended to be paparazzi and shouted, “Will you be back for next season?”

Paula did not answer.

American Idol
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