Be prepared for the saddest, most depressing moment ever in this show. It will absolutely make you teary eyed. This is the most emotional moment in Idol history. You will weep, and feel a kind of pain you probably didn’t know yourself capable of. Yes, nothing, but nothing will prepare you for the soul-crushing moment when it is revealed….

That these contestants don’t have a freaking clue who the Beatles are.

More of that devastating heartbreak in a moment. First of all, the contestants in LA are squired off to Vegas. Because for some reason, you can only sing Beatles songs in the desert, surrounded by strippers, in 102° heat.

They’re put in groups to rehearse different Beatles’ tunes, but not before having a session with the Most Amazing Vocal Coach In History. Her name is Paula Blue and I think I love her.

“STOP STOP STOP!!” she screams at a pair of contestants massacring a beloved Paul McCartney melody. Yes! She says what we are all thinking! And she says it loudly and furiously! Oh thank you, TV Gods! THANK YOU!

“Bury the [BLEEP] on stage!!!” she says to one half of a duo. She is lovely.

I wish she was around to yell at more people. Not just on this show, but others. She should come on The Bachelor, and scream at the women for making fools of themselves. She should go visit the people on “Teen Mom”, and then swing by the offices of the people who wrote the finale for “Lost” and give them a piece of her mind too.

Speaking of people you want to yell at, are there really this many people in America who don’t listen to Beatles songs?  “I have never heard a Beatles song in my life,” claims one person.  That is just stupid. I’m sorry, but unless you were raised in a secret lair in underground the streets of Siberia, YOU HAVE HEARD A BEATLES SONG. I’m not sure when it became a “thing” to pretend you’re too cool to have never heard of people like the Beatles, but it needs to stop. Look, if you haven’t heard “Can’t Buy Me Love”, but you know all the words to Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb”, there is seriously something wrong with the way your were raised. Wild monkeys in Borneo bring their offspring up with a deeper cultural understanding than that.

Jimmy Iovine gives everyone a “Beatles workshop” to help them with their numbers. OK, I wondered; I know Jimmy is the mastermind who worked with John Lennon… but who are the other 7000 people in the room with him? Until the contestants started singing at it became perfectly obvious.  They are bodyguards there to prevent Jimmy from leaping up and violently murdering the people who are ruining these classic songs.  Makes perfect sense.

The contestants all get dragged to see something called “Love”, the Cirque Du Soleil tribute. Why anyone would opt for this over a good old fashioned drag queen Cher impersonation is beyond me.

So it’s on to an hour people abusing Beatles songs. Every moment of listening to the beautiful melodies of Lennon and McCartney coming out of a tone deaf teenager who thinks musical acumen means having flat-ironed hair is more depressing than finding out a close relative died.

First up in front of the judges is Stefano Langone and James Durbin, who, wow what a surprise, screams like someone set his feet on fire.

Lauren Turner’s rendition of “Let It Be” is perjectly lovely. Tim Halperin and Julie Zorrilla’s dueling piano version of “Something” is quite…something.

 

Lakeisha Lewis, Jerome Bell and TaTynisa Wilson do “I Saw Her Standing There”, which I thought was great but Queen J-Lo says was lacking in the harmonies.

In between the pitchy, tone-deaf raping of classic songs, someone gets married. Meth Face Ashley decides that this is the perfect time to wed her boyfriend, because, as she puts it, she’s a “traditional” girl. Then she picks out a white pleather outfit and heads off to the same wedding chapel Brittany Spears got married in. This is like asking if there’s a seat available on the next flight of the Hindenberg, no?

Anyway, she gets married and does a terrible performance of “We Can Work It Out”.

Country Bear Jamboree Backup Singer Country singer Scotty, Lauren, and Denise do “Hello” and it’s oddly my performance. There’s something really great about how such different voices and styles mesh so well together. But then they ruin it by incorporating some weird Benny Hill choreography into that Steven Tyler says looks like something “from a Marx Brothers movie”.

Muppet Rogen and Chris Medina do some sort of “Blues Brothers””Hard Days Night” thing..and then jump on a bed for some reason.

I can’t believe no one tackled “Revolution Number9”, which just seems like a no-brainer for a musical talent show.

Then there’s a round of sad cuts at the end (good by White House Intern Molly, goodbye MethFace!), and the credits play and the show is over…but wait! No it’s not!

The contestants are schlepped BACK to Los Angeles, to meet the judges in “this spectacular hangar”, as Seacrest boldly announces. Yes, there’s no more spectacular place in Hollywood to film this show than an aicraft hangar.

So for the next 60 minutes, we get to watch 8 people writhe in agony for our viewing pleasure.

Here are some of the best who did make the cut:

Naima Adedapo despite the fact that she dresses like the Blue Fairy meets Lola Falana, she’s has one of the best voices and the most dynamic stage presence of the group. However, she makes the ill-fated decision to mention the “In Living Color” Fly Girls to J-Lo. Hahaha, says Jennifer, who swiftly dispatches her secret team of ninja assassins to make Naima and her entire family “disappear” for daring to bring this up in her presence.

Clint Jun Gumboa Sure, America hates him for being so mean to adorable Jaycee Badeaux. But if he sings as well as he did in this round, maybe America will be a little forgive. Hey, we keep forgiving Charlie Sheen, don’t we?

Ashton Jones goes old school for an awesome rendition of “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and gets through

Paul McDonald, who wears something from the Rue McClanahan Evening Wear Collection, makes it through, performing an original song of his in the final round. Steven calls him “quirky”, which is like the Pope calling someone “a little preachy”.

Haley Reinhart, who’s growly low voice makes it impossible for me to understand either what she’s singing or why the judges find her so likeable, makes the final cut as well.

Among those not making the cut are Alex Ryan and one of my absolute favorites, Lakeisha Lewis. I’m sorry, Lakeisha. You had my favorite voice this year, and the show would have been interesting with you around.

Then, lastly, comes the sad news that show favorite Chris Medina will not be going through. You’ll remember Medina was the contestant who was the sweet guy with the brain-damaged fiancee who America fell in love with. It’s not a surprise that he didn’t get through; honestly, his vocals just weren’t up there with some of the others. But it didn’t feel right to send him home without letting the audience at home have a chance to decide how good he was. J-Lo completely falls apart after this decision, crying and telling the producers she can’t go on any more.

 

Tonight we get the final round of judges’ cuts before the America gets a crack at voting. Until next week!