On Monday, I provided rankings for the Idol guys.
Today, the Idol girls.
Honestly, I found this much more difficult.
Among the guys, I feel like there are four or five clearcut frontrunners.
Among the girls, I think more will hinge on how they perform Wednesday night.
Part of that is because we’ve heard so little from so many of these contestants, including Hollie Cavanagh, Jessica Sanchez, Haley Johnsen and Chelsea Sorrell.
Check back during the Idol shows this week. I’ll be live blogging throughout the shows, rating each performance, and following up with a recap about an hour after the show ends.
And, now, the rankings …
1. Shannon Magrane: She says she wants viewers to see her as the “cool kid who just loves to sing.” Once they hear how well she sings, I think they’ll embrace this 16-year-old, who comes across as a very mature 16.
2. Jen Hirsh: Considering the way she’s sounded in Season 11, it’s hard to believe she was bypassed in favor of some of the contestants we were stuck with in the Season 9 semis. Plenty of screen time shouldn’t hurt.
3. Jessica Sanchez: She’s got more experience than her 16 years would suggest. And I was blown away by the passion she showed during her few moments in the spotlight during the Vegas group performance.
4. Baylie Brown: Five years after her first appearance on Idol, Baylie is still “commercial with a capital C,” as Simon would say. But we’ve yet to hear whether she has a $1 million voice to match that $1 million smile.
5. Skylar Laine: She wants to sing gritty country like Waylon and Willie and Miranda. She has the Skoutlaws behind her. And I’d say it’d be foolish to underestimate any girl with a deer mounted on her bedroom wall.
6. Hollie Cavanagh: Judging from the tiny bit we’ve seen, she’s come a long, long way since a bad case of nerves caused her to tear up at her Season 10 audition. Confession: I’ll be rooting for this underrated teen and her adorable English accent.
7. Haley Johnsen: She reminds me of Season 8′s Megan Joy. In a good, quirky way. But we haven’t seen much of her either and she’s going to have to knock Wednesday’s performance out of the park to separate her from the other pretty blonds.
8. Hallie Day: She sounded great in the Pittsburgh auditions, then pretty much disappeared from our TV screens. You’d have thought a contestant who reminded Nigel of Marilyn Monroe would have merited more time on camera.
9. Elise Testone: One of the best singers and biggest voices on the girls’ side, and it won’t be the first time Idol voters failed to rally around talent. A wild card choice, perhaps? Experienced enough at 28 that she won’t wilt under pressure.
10. Chelsea Sorrell: Great voice. Great personality. So little airtime. Having three country singers in the semifinals doesn’t help when you’re the one voters are least familiar with.
11. Erika Van Pelt: Here’s a bit of trivia. Only one female singer over 24 has made the Idol finals since Season 6 ended. And that singer, Naima Adedapo, finished 10th. Erika isn’t short on talent, but she’s 26.
12. Brielle Von Hugel: Idol did her no favor with its portrayal of her on group night in Hollywood. Or by showing that clip of her looking very annoyed at her fellow group members over and over. Bye-bye, Brielle.