Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Rock Star: Meet the new boss?

Well, for about 10 or 15 minutes there it looked like Dilana had "Rock Star" season two all won. Not only was she the only one brave and smart enough to want to perform with Gilby, but she kicked all kinds of ass on the "CSI: Miami" theme song. But then Storm, and Magni, and Patrice (sort of), and Lukas and Toby proved that we still have a competition here. While it wasn't brilliant from start to finish, there were more highs tonight than on any episode this season to date. In order, after the jump...

Dilana, "Won't Get Fooled Again": The House Band always rocks the hell out of The Who, and I loved Gilby's intro. I prefer Insane Witch Dilana to last week's Biker Bar Dilana, and even to tonight's Rock Goddess Dilana, but this is the incarnation that actually has a shot at fronting Supernova, and she proved she could command the stage even when not completely losing her shit. Only bad part was when Gilby did the Springsteen-esque lean-in to harmonize; his voice didn't mesh with Dilana's at all. But a lot of fun, and the wail at the end was awesome.

Jill, "Mother, Mother": What Jason said: vastly improved stage presence, bland vocals -- especially on the chorus, which is where she should have really been going berserk. Other than the leap off the stage, nothing too exciting.

Ryan, "Paint It Black": I'm sorry, but I was too busy laughing at Ryan's Zoolander wardrobe and makeup to even notice the performance first time through. And on replay... no, still laughing. Take three: he definitely has a lot more energy than he did the first few weeks, but the vocals were screamy without being that interesting. And did I mention that I kept waiting for him to show us his Blue Steel face (or, at least, Le Tigre).

Storm, "We Are the Champions": With Dana gone, Storm is the best pure singer left by a country mile, and aside from one misstep on the first "we'll keep on fighting," she stared Freddie's ghost right in the face and didn't blink. Great theatricality, and I loved the new harmony on the middle portion. But, like Tommy, I'm looking forward to Storm going nuts again, and soon. (Her "Oh, I'll spank the crap out of you again, for sure" was almost as funny as Ryan's eye make-up.) And her support for everyone else stood out more this week than ever. On the webisode, she's completely rocking out as everybody else performs their version of the Supernova song, and she was on her feet and dancing for virtually everybody tonight.

(Side note: what kind of box was Brooke standing on to seem almost as tall as Storm when they stood next to each other?)

Zayra, "All the Young Dudes": Continuing her superhero costume motif, she seems to have appropriated Lemuria's original outfit from "Who Wants to Be a Superhero?," with a top hat and stripper heels to complement it. Whenever Marian and I see Penelope Cruz on TV or in a movie, Marian likes to riff on how annoying it would be to have to listen to that voice after about a week of living together, especially once the pillow talk ends and she starts saying things like, "We're out of toilet paper" and "Where are the Hot Pockets?" Listening to Zayra always reminds me of that, even when her vocals are completely overpowered by the band (plus Magni) the way they were tonight. On the rare occasions when I could hear her, she was both flat and annoying. Not nearly the bizarro entertainment value of last week's transformation of "8675309" into a lesbian punk anthem. Be crazy or be gone, Z.

Josh Logan, "Interstate Love Song": If Dave felt Patrice disappeared in front of Tommy, then the space-time continuum folded in on itself to erase Josh from ever having existed. I appreciate his attempt to rock out for real (and his Supernova adaptation was one of the two or three best), but after the opening bars, his voice pretty much ceased to exist. The House Band and Tommy were hot, though.

Magni, "When the Dolphins Cry": Awww, his baby has noise-canceling headphones! Sorry, dad moment there. Having his family in the room sure inspired Magni; this was his best performance by far, with strong singing and palpable emotion. For the first time, I can actually see why Jason and some of the others have been lavishing so much praise on him.

Patrice, "Instant Karma": My favorite Lennon solo song, and this was a cool arrangement of it (not to mention a song for which Patrice's incessant smiley-ness wasn't out of place). Nice move with the mic stand, proving that you actually can play guitar on this show without having to superglu your feet to the stage. But at the close of the show, she was in the freakin' bottom three again. I have to think that Dilana and Storm are overshadowing her too much (she's the Jennifer Hudson in this scenario), which is a shame, because I'd much rather she stick around for a long time than, say, Josh or Ryan.

Lukas, "Creep": In the webisode, Dilana all but dares Lukas to sing this one as a put up or shut up moment about his ability to sing a song, and you could see her on stage tonight looking really pissed at herself for giving her biggest competition such a great showcase. Turns out the stupid hobbit can actually sing a little -- and, more importantly, that he can bring some serious emotion when he's not just preening and staggering. Hell, I even loved the stupid wink. He's obviously Tommy's favorite, and unless he really stumbles moving forward, I think the producers need to either limit season three's talent pool to only homeless Canadian assclowns or ban them altogether to keep things interesting.

Toby, "Burning Down the House": Was I the only one who, when Toby pulled out the megaphone, expected him to start belting out Spanish gibberish? No? Just me? To that, I have only one thing to say: Sanchez, go! Anyway... Toby had some of the boy-band moves back for the beginning of this, but as the song kept going, he got legitimately weird, which is something I think you have to do while performing anything written by David Byrne. Good modern arrangement, House Band burning up the studio, etc.

What did everybody else think?


Moley said...

I think Storm by far killed it tonight, and I have really hard time picturing a woman fronting supernova, but between her and Diliana it may very well happen. Everyone seems to upping their showmanship as we get closer to the final.

Webisodes hmm
/me checks

bill said...

listen to Dilana's version of Mother, Mother: go to Dilanarox, click Discography.

Patrice was one of my favorites, but predicted she'd be in the bottom 3. Jill goes this week. Band just doesn't like her.

Here's my Ryan comment: A suckfest of infinite suckitude. last week I said of his "Losing My Religion": an emotionally overwrought ball of cheese and Ryan's performance reminded me of Dana Carvey singing Chopping Broccoli. This was worse. This was a pretentious theater geek wet dream of what a rock and roll performance should be. Easily the worst of the night. Not even Zayra has been this bad and at least she's a slightly interesting trainwreck.

Leo said...

Seeing Magni's family made me hope he doesn't win. Don't send him out on tour with the likes of Tommy Lee and Dave Navarro. That's trouble.

Dilana can hold her own with this band better than any of them. Send her.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't even laugh at Ryan because I sat there open-mouthed by what a complete ass he was making of himself. What's up with the fake-mohawked sweatshirt? The eye makeup??? We needed Simon to tell him to get back to his high school drama class. I can't stand this guy.

Same goes for Toby...he was doing a pretty good job but I can't stand cheesy and that megaphone was CHEESY.

Patrice sounded great tonight but the smiling actually bugged me more tonight than usual... she looked like a Dr. Seuss character.

I have to say I fell in love with Magni for the first time tonight. I've always wanted to like him and couldn't bring myself to care, but tonight, I thought he made it real. And his wife and son are beautiful.

Dilana was great as usual and she should win the season, but last night, my heart was with Magni.

Anonymous said...

I love the Zoolander reference, I couldn't stop laughing either - I kept thinking "I didn't know the Hamburgler was a rawker."

Tonight was the first night I didn't actually hate Josh, and Tommy was right, it was too bad he was playing guitar on that song, instead of being able to move around and interact with T. Lee.

I admit Lucas was good last night, but agree that he's an ass clown of JD Fortune proportions.

Anonymous said...

I wasn't expecting Toby to shout Spanish gibberish into the megaphone, but thanks, Alan, for reminding me of the funniest 30 (?) seconds of television from all of last year. "Sanchez, GO!" That part of the sketch is tear-inducingly funny just from memory.

Too bad for Toby that his take on the Talking Heads was pretty meh. He needed to do something like that on that song, even though his particular concept didn't work out well.

Josh and Patrice share a common problem-- they're both too smiley and mellow for Supernova. And, yes, like Patrice, Josh just disappeared in front of Tommy Lee. (He disappears in front of Nate, the House Band drummer, too, but especially more so when the camera cuts away to the drummer twice as much.) Neither of them will make the top few, but (unfortunately), Patrice will probably leave earlier than she should.

Alan Sepinwall said...

And thank you, Andrew, for getting the reference. I was really irked that YouTube didn't have a clip of it I could link to.

Moley, the MSN site doesn't just have webisodes, but complete clips of all 10 of them performing their version of the new Supernova song. Best of the lot, shockingly: Josh. Worst of the lot, even more shockingly: Dilana. If it's close between her and Lukas at the end, I think his songwriting abilities are going to give him the win.

Kristen said...

Ryan's ridiculous costume and posturing caused my husband to shout out, "This is how we dance on Sprockets!"

I agree with others, this was the first time I saw what the band does in Magni. I had chills.

Dilana was amazing; I love the way she holds her own against those guys. Storm also, but I think they won't know how to deal with her sex appeal, in a marketing sense.

Marty's version of Creep was a thousand times better than the grungy hobbit's.

Speaking of last year's contestants, I was liking Toby for the first time until he pulled out the megaphone. *suffers through painful JD flashbacks*

My picks for bottom: Jill, Zayra (boring this week), and Ryan or Josh (whom I forgot the minute the show was over). Jill to go.

Anonymous said...

Everything is on Youtube. Here's the Chapelle sketch on YouTube: White People Dancing.

(Speaking of Chapelle, the "lost episodes" made Dave's decision to walk away from the show seem to be the right one. None of the sketches had the spark of "White People Dancing" or "Racial Draft" or any of the other sketches from season 2.)

None of the Supernovices' original songs were all that good. I found that Lukas and Patrice (!) were among the better ones (but Patrice still sounds like she's singing happy mid-90's college rock no matter what she is singing to, and could well go this week.) I can't remember Josh's version at all, so Dilana's awful lyrics were, at least, memorable. And her melody fit the song better than Jill's or Storm's.

Philip said...

Nice recap. I put up a recap of the show over on my blog so I won't go through it all again.

I'll be back tomorrow to catch your recap of the elimination show. Until then thanks.

Oh! Remember it's no longer Rockstar:Supernova; now it's Rockstar:Tommy Lee's Unit

Anonymous said...

sue posted re: Ryan: "The eye makeup???"

Michael Stipe's been doing a version of that eye makeup for years now (and doing it much better and more sexily, heh heh).

After last night, I think either Magni or Storm is the best fit for the band and also the band's best chance of having a legimitate hit (beyond the built-in fans of the show, that is). Dilana would probably be the most dynamic, but I like her too much to want her saddled with that crew.

Jill needs to go. Zayra needs to go. Ryan really, really needs to go.

And I liked Toby's megaphone. Mmmm, cheeeeeese [droool]!

Philip said...

Are we going to get a recap of the badass elimination?

Anonymous said...

Homeless Canadian assclowns. Hee.

For some reason, I can't help but like Lukas as a musician. I think he is an idiot whenever he opens his mouth to speak, but when he performs I am glued to my TV screen. It bugs me, dammit, that I loved his version of Creep.

Now I'm off to see the clips of those Supernova songs. Thanks for the heads up!

Anonymous said...

Alan's on vacation, so I think we can talk about the double elimination here.

Anyone besides me think it should have been a triple elimination? Ryan sucks out loud and should have gone home, too. No way is Supernova going to pick him to front them unless they really want their lead singer looking perpetually constipated. And even though Jill sang the best of the three bottom-feeders, it was time to boot her. Josh is another one with no chance of fronting the band, plus he inherited Phil's bobbleheaded mannerisms, so I'm not sad he's gone, either.

The funniest thing was the whining about not getting to go to Vegas. I understand wanting a free trip to Vegas, but it's not like you can't go yourself on the cheap. There's even a website called cheapovegas.com to show you how!

Anonymous said...

i grew up in new york my whole liFE. ive heard all of the music from everywhere. ryan performed in jones beach by himself when he was 14 when he won a contest. he is not a flashy rockstar and is trying to give a global culture what they want. if you listened to his REAL album it would blow your head up. he hasnt even begun to blow americas mind . wait till he gets to sing his own song ...he has already one . and you'll be laughingposting comments about reality shows , and ryan willl be rocking a globe. theres no contest. you're an asshole and your comments are a joke . you have no idea what a rockstar is and what he is compromising on this show. losing my religon , baby grand piano. just wait dude , wait and you'll see. he probably doesnt want to win ....2nd place will launch his career , you pathetic man ,....pathetic pathetic man