Fan Fare

Entertainment behind the scenes

Scott MacIntyre and Lil Rounds thrill “American Idol” judges


“American Idol” fans get an extra night of action this week in the form of a bonus episode on Thursday night, so the judges can bring back three contestants previously eliminated by the fans. The wildcard round will likely offer a second shot at fame for a couple contestsimon-cowell-randy-jacksonants from Tuesday night’s show, because the judges praised half of the 12 singers, and all but three of them will be eliminated by fan voting on Wednesday night.

So who will sail through to the show’s “Top 12″ on Wednesday and who will rise from “Idol” banishment on Thursday?

If alpha judge Simon Cowell is right, blind singer Scott MacIntyre will make it through easily on Wednesday night for his poignant but controlled rendition of the Bruce Hornsby song “Mandolin Rain.” Ditto for spunky Lil Rounds, a big-voiced singer with a quirky name whom judge Randy Jackson said kept her “swagger on” during her version of Mary J. Blige’s “Be Without You.” Based on the judges’ reaction, the top contestant from the rest of Tuesday night’s field is hard to determine.

Fans could go for 26-year-old Virginia mom Felicia Barton, who was eliminated during the tryouts but got called back to replace disqualified contestant Joanna Pacitti. Barton’s version of “No One” by Alicia Keys was praised by the judges. “You certainly came back to prove a point,” Cowell said. Ju’Not Joyner’s soulful cover of the Plain White T’s song “Hey There, Delilah” also earned kind words from the four judges. Jorge Nunez, a contestant from Puerto Rico whose accented English became the subject of back-and-forth discussion on the panel, also wowed the judges with his passionate performance of the Elton John song “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me.”