So, short version: Jasmine Murray and Jorge Nunez go home. Megan has to stand on stage with Jasmine, and Anoop has to stand with Jorge, even though DialIdol said Noop Dogg was safe(*).
(*) Note that Ryan never at any point suggested that Anoop was near the lowest vote-getter. They love to play semantic games with these results shows in order to create more drama. But are they trying to stir up the Noop Dogg Pound to vote even more, or are they trying to shame the audience into getting rid of him already?
But the bigger element of the episode -- other than another return visit by Kelly Clarkson, who as usual puts the current contestants to shame -- was the introduction of the "Judges' Save," based on a twist they used a while back on France's "Nouvelle
As I said at length last night, I'm not crazy about anything that takes power away from the public and puts it in the hands of the judges. Sure, America sometimes screws up and puts Jennifer Hudson in the bottom three with Fantasia and La Toya, but two of the judges are Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul, and I'm not so sure about Kara at this point, either.
But as a one-time-only thing, and as something that doesn't screw over any other contestant that week(**), it's not terrible. If people are right about it needing to be used before Top 4, it wouldn't have saved Daughtry, but maybe Jennifer gets saved and John Stevens and/or Jasmine Trias go home the next in season three.
(**) I'd argue that it does have the potential to screw somebody over. If you assume that the person deserving of being Saved was only going to go home because his or her fans got complacent, then they're going to be on extra alert the following week, which could basically gave them immunity two weeks in a row. That'd send home not only the person who ordinarily would have gone home the following week, but some other poor slob whose time wasn't up yet. And now my brain is starting to hurt as I try to work out the math on all of this.
One other question: were the contestants lip-syncing during the group song? Not only did they sound in better harmony than I can ever remember with a bunch this large, but I could swear there were a couple of spots (notably near the end with Michael Sarver) where someone's voice was way out of sync with what their mouth was doing.
What did everybody else think?