Saturday, September 16, 2006

Philippine Idol Wildcard Recaps

I want to apologize to Stef Lazaro and blame Mini Shabu-Shabu. I got home ten minutes past nine and missed Stef Lazaro’s live performance of Total Eclipse of the Heart. Ryan Cayabyab says she raised the bar, so it must’ve been better than Home.

Gian Magdangal.
Gians hopes prayer and luck are on his side. He’s singing Lately by Stevie Wonder. He’s seated, he’s standing, and he’s looking at the camera. His voice is strong, and he’s comfortable with the song, so that’s a good thing, I suppose. He trips over so slightly over a few notes – obviously his range isn’t that good – but it’s a delivery that is otherwise winning.
Francis: Born to do this. You’re looking at someone who was born to be Philippine Idol.
Pilita: I’m used to seeing him dance. He can do it all – and he’s good-looking, too.
Ryan: You are the best overall male performer in this competition. You have to be in the Final 12.

Ting Otero.
Ting is a little miffed by the judges’ earlier comments that few talent came from Davao. She’s thankful, and encourages Davaoeños to vote for her. She’s singing Sana’y Maghintay ang Walang Hanggan, which I am unfamiliar with, and after the first few bars, I conclude it doesn’t sound like a competition piece good enough for Philippine Idol. Ting’s warm and soothing voice is tentative. It looks like her nerves are getting to her and I’m sorry, Ting, but it isn’t looking good for you. Huh, a break before the comments?
Francis: I’ve always rooted for Ting. There’s something about Ting, and her voice, the way she sings. They chose the songs, and the song didn’t connect.
Pilita is defensive about her comments. “Most of the good talent in Davao are in Manila or in Cebu.” She didn’t comment on Ting at all.
Ryan: All the musicians like you. This particular performance doesn’t mean you’re a good talent, but your particular interpretation didn’t work because this song calls for lyricism. You were choppy. It needs haplos.

She sure is confident. ;)

Onyx Culala.
Onyx is given a second chance, and he cries in his video. He’s singing Wildflower - the version I know is Color Me Badd’s, and it seems that this performance is based on that – and it’s miles ahead of his last performance, but this, like Ting’s, is a problematic song choice. Onyx has a good voice, I’ll give him that, but I don’t think people connect to him. Oi vey.
Francis: Interesting.
Pilita: I’m surprised. He has improved from the first time. Fantastic. Very good.
Ryan: I agree with Mamita. I didn’t expect you to sing good tonight but it was a very big improvement. Baka maiwanan ka ng trend.

Ira Marasigan.
Some people think she’s sosyalera, but she thinks it’s a way and means for people to find someone worth idolizing, not because she has sikat parents, but simply because she has what it takes to be Philippine Idol. She’s singing In My Life by Patti Austin. Ick, blue eyeshadow. Her voice is strong and jazzy, but I personally think the version she’s picked is a little too big for her. Gasp! She gets reverb! The others didn’t get that! Oh dear, Ira, I’m a little concerned…
Francis: Skill is skill, and Ira has it. I would also like to comment that you look different. Very beautiful. Utot mo.
Pilita: Ira is always very classy, she’s very talented. I think the song is medyo kulang. Her movement was sexy – like me – but she’s got everything.
Ryan: Two things: nothing wrong with good education and intelligence. We need people like you in the industry. But sometimes, when you’re very well-educated and classy, the warmth disappears. You need more spontaneity and warmth, but I wish you were in the Top 12.

Joseph Astor.
Joseph is really relying on Philippine Idol to bring his family out of poverty. He’s singing Maria Maria by Santana. This should be interesting. His diction’s a little off - you can’t blame him, given his background – but he does bring a little kind of street cred into the song. Eeh, the Sexbomb dance. He kisses Mamita’s hand. Save for a few bum notes when he launches into a very weak falsetto, it’s not a bad choice of song – it’ll make him stand out.
Francis: Joseph, if you want to save your family, join Laban o Bawi. The energy was good, we have a contender right here.
Pilita: Joseph can be a Philippine Idol because he’s a ready idol for females and gays. Napakamacho niya.
Ryan: Joseph, ang hirap magtrabaho, no? Because of that, we can see your sincerity, you’re really trying to perform. I’ll remind the people listening that you have a good voice.

Ken Dingle.
Ken left his job to do Philippine Idol - that’s sacrifice for him, and he’s the only one in his family who’s here in Manila. He’s singing A House is Not a Home - ooh, not a good choice, top of mind. His voice is high, but it doesn’t seem to have any support. He’s pitchy through the song – and it seems like amateur night at the Roxy – and the last few bars are really agony. Sorry, Ken, but unless you pull off a Miguel Mendoza, thanks for your time.
Francis: I could feel his sincerity, but there were sharp notes in the end part. I felt that it was too serious, a little too heavy.
Pilita: It’s a beautiful song with beautiful lyrics. He sang it from the soul and from the heart. It’s up to him to convince the others to vote for him.
Ryan: Congratulations, Ken, for giving a good fight. I know for a fact that it’s obvious you’re very sick, it shows in the way you sing. It wasn’t good at all.

Ramirr Grepo.
Ramirr is inspired by his fiancée, Faye, and is singing I Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing. Steven Tyler’s shriekfest, the one Diane Warren song I don’t like. Oh Lord. Why do I feel like I’m still in the girlie bar that Ramirr transported me to two weeks ago? Eeek, he’s singing to Faye, and it’s just so S.O.P. Ohmigosh, I’m getting shivers up and down my spine, and not in the good way.
Francis: Ramirr is my chicken. We know you can do those songs – you were in your comfort zone. I wanted to hear something different. Your voice was stronger then.
Pilita: He sang this song for this beautiful girl that is here. What if he makes it into the 12? There will be a lot of beautiful women who will like him – what do we do then? I’ll stop saying “I love you.” You are still one of my favorites.
Ryan: This time I will agree with Francis. This competition is not ‘pataasan ng nota.’ You were phenomenal and the magic disappeared because you did the same thing.

Suey Medina.
Suey is doing this for her mother, who died of breast cancer. She’s singing Best of My Love, a classic show band tune considering she’s probably done it a thousand times before. Ohmigosh, Ramirr can’t dance. She’s pitchy, though, and while I really think Suey is beautiful, her voice just doesn’t carry through, oi vey. I want to like her, I really do, but I don’t.
Francis: I would pay tickets to watch this lady. Beautiful.
Pilita: Suey said earlier everyone in Marawi City is all watching, but Mr. Cojuangco is here. When are we going to have Channel 5 everywhere. Very good, Suey, I enjoyed it.
Ryan: Suey, I see a dozen more bandstand girls sing that better than you. None of those bandstand girls are standing in front because they don’t have what you have – you’re nice to watch. I hope you make it.

Mau Marcelo.
Mau did this for her mom, who raised her after her father left her. She’s got the feather boa and the slinky gown. Cathy likes her outfit; I can’t stand it. She chooses Til My Heartaches End, and, naturally, knocks it out of the ballpark, although there seemed to be a lack of power. She hits the right notes almost flawlessly, although I realize her range isn’t as wide as I thought it was.
Francis: I am calling on the executives of Sony-BMG, give her an album, since the texters don’t listen to us anyway.
Pilita: Natutuwa ako because I have seen her become more elegant. Mau, what can I say? You’re perfect.
Ryan: World-class. That’s all.

Ryan A. asks if they did better.
Francis: Some were invincible, but the chinks in their armor showed.
Pilita: It seemed like some were very serious and they felt this is the last time. If I don’t make it today, they can’t make it. They all tried their best.
Ryan: Oh yeah, it improved. All did, except for a couple. Sana marami kaming makikitang second, third, fourth times, lalong gumagaling. That’s the magic.

For some reason, we're unsatisfied by these performances. They were generally safe, for the most part, and, ugh, all the tears. Bordering on emotional blackmail. C'mon ABC-5, we're gonna vote for them because they're good, not because your editing brings about sympathy votes.

Anyway, based on these performances, these are our predictions:
Mau Marcelo. In a field of five, Mau's song choice was strategic and classy. She won't slip through the cracks this time.
Ira Marasigan. In a tight fight between her and Ting, we pick Ira as a strategic choice for a wide fan base with significant text-voting power.
Gian Magdangal. Gian is such a pimped horse that we can't imagine a Top 12 without him. His Lately was not the best version in the world, but it was more than sufficient.
Joseph Astor. In deciding between him and Ramirr, we opted for his stronger vocal and the fact that now that Pilita's let the cat out of the bag, people are going to see him as a poor pretty boy who could use the break.

As it is, though, the past few episodes have shown that Philippine Idol tends to defy logic, so what do we know anyway?