American Idol Hopefuls Reduced to Nine

photo by Frank Micelotta/FOX

"After watching the show last night, it's clear to me that the girls are outperforming the boys," said American Idol mentor Jimmy Iovine—who heads up Interscope Geffen A&M and has to figure out what to do with these kids when they leave—at the top of tonight's (March 14) episode.

And it should be crystal clear from the results that he was right on the money with that statement. In a show that included performances by the dude-liest dudes Bon Jovi and Idol season 11 winner Phillip Phillips, it was still all about the women.

In the Top 3 were standouts Candice Glover, Kree Harrison and Angie Miller. All women! I'm feeling pretty good about calling all three of them last night.

Top 20 contestants "Awkward Turtle" Charlie Askew and Aubrey Cleland also showed back up to go head to head for a spot on the Idol tour, which can be very lucrative. Charlie played his own song, "Sky Blue Diamond," and Aubry opted for "Here on My Own." Aubrey was a little wobbly, but it was still the superior performance to Charlie's screechy ballad. We'll find out next week who gets to go on the road.

They showed the rest of the Top 10 in order of voting percentage, and I didn't fare so well with the lowest vote-getters. Ryan Seacrest named (in order) Lazaro, Amber, Janelle, Burnell and Paul before naming Devin and Curtis as the bottom two. One of them would have to sing for the chance to be saved.

It's interesting—historically speaking, women are usually the first to go on Idol, so I was quite surprised by this outcome. Not only was a woman not leaving this week, there wasn't even one among the bottom four vote getters. Nicki noted that she was going home if it ended up being Curtis.

And wouldn't you know, it was Curtis. Teary-eyed Idol hopefuls looked on while Curtis went back to "I Believe I Can Fly," which was a big moment last week. 

It proved to not be enough. Voting on the save has to be unanimous, and it wasn't. Nicki looked pretty inconsolable about it, but there's almost no way the judges would use their only save this early in the game. Hopefully she was bluffing about going home.

And that's how it goes. Our country folks Kree, Janelle and Paul lived to fight another day. Let's do it again next week!

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