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IDOL WATCH: The Final Judgment- Alaina vs. McCreery!


It's finally here! In what is sure to be one of the most highly rated events on television this spring, the final two American Idol contestants battled one final time tonight to earn the title of America's favorite performer. And let's hope viewers were prepared for a whole lot of twang, because tonight's season ten finale of the show was nothing if not a little bit country.

Oh how very far these two country-singing youngsters have come since January, when FOX first brought them to our living rooms. In just four months' time, we've watchEd Scotty McCreery and Lauren Alaina transform from mere children into slightly older children, with this year's ultimate showdown earning the title of the youngest finale in the history of the show. In fact, if you add together Lauren and Scotty's years spent on this planet, you still fall three years short of Ryan Seacrest's age- I kid you not.

This evening's hour-long festivities were kicked off by Lauren's confirmation that she would indeed be singing. In case you haven't heard, news broke earlier this afternoon that Ms. Alaina was having some serious vocal troubles, and that a faulty vocal cord might prevent her from taking part in the finale. Fear not though, the Idol doc prevented such a catastrophe, and Lauren got to sing in all three rounds (finalists' favorites from the season, selections from the Idols' idols, and their potential first singles).

Scotty went first tonight by default, reviving his favorite song "Gone." He was looking uber-confident and at ease, but I couldn't help but notice that the new space definitely swallowed up a lot of his baritone sound. Damn you, Nokia Theatre! Since we've heard him belt out this one before, and we still had five performances to go, we didn't get any judges' feedback for this one. No worries.

Lauren took the stage singing "Flat on the Floor," looking half terrified and half ready to kick some major Scotty a--. Once she made it to her high notes towards the end, you could definitely tell that her voice was a bit stressed, but I however, loved the scratchiness it brought to the vocal. But would she be able to keep it together for her next two songs?

Next up, Scotty's hero George Straight picked his own hit for the 17 year old to sing, "Check Yes or No." I would have loved to hear George's reasoning behind the selection, because I couldn't have been more disappointed with the performance; boring! No judges commentary again? I'm getting confused now...

Carrie Underwood picked "Maybe It Was Memphis" for Lauren to sing next. It was certainly a better choice than Scotty's round two song, but I was again left yawning at the television. Maybe it's all this country craziness that I'm having a tough time handling. Again, the judges remained totally silent; utterly opinionless.

Until 8:28 that is- when the trio chimed in for the first time with some very vague opinions. The general consensus seemed to be that Scotty took round one and Lauren round two. Agreed. Steven commented that if they ‘sang that better [they] might be in the finals of American Idol.' And just in case we forgot from the squillion other times he's mentioned it this season, Randy pointed out that both contestants are indeed ‘in it to win it.'

Scotty then debuted his potential single, titled "I Love You This Big." The song suited his voice in the loveliest way possible, and the performance was backed with a slideshow of his greatest moments from the past four months. RAndy Loved that the song showed off his range and JLo agreed. Steven gave him props for nailing it yet again.

Lauren then gave us a sneak peek of what to expect from her if she should win, singing a gorgeous ballad- "Like My Mother Does." I liked the song itself better than Scotty's, but did Ryan really need to escort her down the steps mid-song? That seemed a bit unnecessary. Randy thought that the song was a ‘great summation of her journey.' JLo commented that she might have just won, and Steven added that she is the American Idol in his eyes.

My official consensus of the week: I've said it once and I'll say it again- I think season ten is Scotty's to lose. Though ultimately Lauren sang better tonight, I don't think Lauren's fan base quite compares to Mr. McCreery's. Thoughts? Who would you like to take the season ten crown?

Don't forget to check in with BroadwayWorld's IDOL WATCH tomorrow night to find out who won American Idol Season Ten! Vote for your favorite contestants at!

Miss the Top 3 sing last week? Click here for a full recap!

Emmy Award-winning AMERICAN IDOL is created and executive produced by Simon Fuller, Founder, 19 Entertainment, a division of CKX, Inc.; and executive-produced by Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; Ken Warwick, Executive Producer, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; and Nigel Lythgoe, President, Big Red 2 Entertainment.

Among the many American Idol finalists and winners to appear on the Broadway stage are Fantasia, Justin Guarini ,Jordin Sparks,Diana DeGarmo, Ace Young, Tamyra Gray, Constantine Maroulis, Frenchie Davis, Clay Aiken and Taylor Hicks.

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