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Entertainment behind the scenes

Who is bound for the “Idol” finale?

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rounds1Lil Rounds and Anoop Desai sang their swan songs Wednesday night on “American Idol,” meaning the singing competition lost its two most uniquely named contestants in one fell swoop.

Nostalgia for “Little” and “Anoop Dogg” aside, their joint offing was hardly unexpected. Lil, a 23-year-old mother of three from Memphis, struggled to gain the judges’ respect through most of her time in the show’s Top 13. Desai, a 21-year-old from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, meanwhile, was among the show’s Bottom Three vote-getters for four straight weeks.

Now, the show is down to five singers, and the big question is which two will make it to the season finale. Adam Lambert has emerged as the frontrunner, but who could challenge him?

Allison Iraheta‘s chances appear slim, after having thrice landed in the Bottom Three, including this week. She is also by far the show’s youngest contestant, at just 16. But could Allison benefit from being the only woman left standing?

Adam Lambert keeps “Idol” judges entranced

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lambertBefore he went on stage, the camera swooped down on “American Idol” contestant Adam Lambert as he stood beaming in the crowd. But as usual, Lambert was more than just a face in the crowd on Tuesday night, as he again wowed the judges and solidified his frontrunner status.

It was Disco Week on “Idol,” and true to the theme Lambert sang the Bee Gees hit “If I Can’t Have You,” effortlessly hitting the high notes and inspiring judge Paula Abdul to gush that his performance made her feel his “pain.” Abdul was not alone. All the judges said they loved the performance, with alpha judge Simon Cowell commending Lambert for surprising him by picking a Bee Gees song.

“Idol” reject Scott MacIntyre thrilled by near save

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For eliminated “American Idol” contestant Scott MacIntyre, just coming close to being saved was a victory on Wednesday night.scott-macintyre

“I was actually thrilled that it was a split decision between the four judges, and that was something very nice to walk away knowing,” MacIntyre said in a conference call with reporters on Thursday.

Who would the “Idol” judges save?

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Top 9 contestant Megan Joy danced off the “American Idol” stage on Wednesday night after she said midway through the show that she did not care that judge Simon Cowell disliked her performance on Tuesday night. Cowell responded later on by telling her: “Megan with the greatest respect, when you said you don’t care, nor do we.” So with no chance that the judges would save her, when Megan sang Bob Marley’s “Turn Your Lights Down Low” one more time, it was all about the pathos.USA/

When will the judges step up and use their save? Although there was some lively discussion on the panel last week when oil worker Michael Sarver sang his last song, few were surprised when the judges declined to save him.

“Idol” Top 9: Cowell zingers and a turnaround for Scott

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BOXING“American Idol” is already down to nine singers, and as the contestants have honed their performances, judge Simon Cowell has refined his famous one-liners. This week he was in top form, sparing only a select few from his special brand of humiliation.

Here were his top proclamations of the night for each contestant:

Anoop Desai, who performed Usher’s “Caught Up”

Simon: “It was a little bit like a college boy wanting to be a pop star and failing. It actually gave me a headache.”

On “Idol,” country night takes down frontrunners

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USA/“Country Week” is always a mixed bag on “American Idol”, alternately filling viewers with anticipation and dread.

Tuesday night’s tribute to the “Grand Ole Opry,” with country icon Randy Travis as guest mentor, certainly didn’t buck that trend, taking several of the show’s frontrunners down a notch and allowing dark horses to emerge.

A new rule, but no salvation for Jasmine and Jorge on “Idol”

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USA/“American Idol” unveiled a bold format change on Wednesday night, allowing the show’s four judges to “save” a worthy contestant from elimination once this season, potentially altering the singing competition’s final outcome.

The change marks a major shift for “Idol,” which has always allowed viewers to vote by phone and text message for who will stay. The idea, host Ryan Seacrest said, is to prevent shocker rejections such as when Chris Daughtry, now one of “Idol’s” most successful alumni, came in fourth place during the show’s fifth season.

13 becomes Anoop Desai’s lucky number on “Idol”

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And then there were……13??

The judges expanded the “American Idol” top 12 to include Anoop Desai and make it a top 13 for the first time in a suspense-generating stunt.

 But Tatiana Del Toro, with all her tears, ambition, drama and unpredictability, will have to find a stage other than “Idol” to emote on. Is the show better off?anoop-desai

Did the judges do right by “Idol” comeback hopefuls?

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TELEVISION-IDOL/Lil Rounds, Scott MacIntyre and Jorge Nunez moved on to the next round on “American Idol” Wednesday, but none of those names came as a surprise and the focus moved to the eight contestants who will compete in next week’s “wildcard” round.

Did the judges pick the right contestants?

 The always-dramatic Tatiana Del Toro immediately burst into tears again at getting a second shot while Anoop Desai, who Cowell called “original, likeable, talented”, looked stunned when his name was called.

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