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Eye on 'Idol': It ain't a man's world

Hunter Hauk
The Dallas Morning News

We all made it through week one of "American Idol" live performances and evictions. I have to apologize in advance for the scattered collection of thoughts to come. Cut me some slack, though - there are five freakin' hours of show to discuss. Fox should put America on its payroll for such a time commitment.

But let's get on with it. I'm starting to think "Idol" is a girl's game. Sure, you've got the odd males who made big waves after the show (Daughtry and ... gulp ... Aiken), but Underwood, Clarkson and Hudson stand out as the brightest veterans.

Watching the new guys turn on the cheese Tuesday night furthered this theory. That whole affair was unsettling, really. Rudy Cardenas should never, ever dance like that. Same goes for A.J. Tabaldo. Sundance Head has a tendency to buckle, big time - where'd those blues go, chief? And Sanjaya Malakar ... his goofy smile seriously works my nerves.

Some of the guys brought the goods, though. Chris Richardson has a funky vibe, even if he stole it from Justin Timberlake. Phil Stacey's tone is warm and appealing - you can't help but believe him when he sings. Chris Sligh did OK on "Typical," but his tune was overshadowed by a diss on Simon which actually seemed to get under the judge's skin. Good job!

Blake Lewis secured the title as diamond in a very rough rough by showing a softer, yet compelling vocal style on Keane's "Somewhere Only We Know." He's definitely a contendah.

In the spirit of Simon, though (the poor guy), I had a hard time remembering any of those dudes after Wednesday night's episode. That's because a few of the girls sang like it was already hour two of the "Idol" finale. Stephanie Edwards and Melinda Doolittle are born performers. Jordin Sparks showed chops far beyond her 17 years on a Tracy Chapman number. It's hard to hate Sabrina Sloan's high notes. And Lakisha Jones sings so good, she makes you wanna slap ya mama.

But, before I get a case of the vapors, let me just skip to the good stuff. Who got cut Thursday night? Well, Paul Kim can be barefoot all he wants, but he won't step on the "Idol" stage again. And the aforementioned Rudy Cardenas' "Free Ride" is over - must've been that dancing. As for the girls, America sent two of the boring ones packing: Amy Krebs and Nicole Tranquillo.

That's all for now. Until next week ... (Columnist collapses to the floor.)

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