Oh god, here we go again. At the beginning of last night’s show, Ryan Seacrest declared that the evening’s results would be shocking, and he was right: after a somewhat polarizing performance of “Eleanor Rigby” on Tuesday, Big Mike Lynche was the lowest vote-getter. He was afforded the opportunity to sing his way back into the competition via the “judges’ save,” and he did, with another masterful performance of “This Woman’s Work” by Maxwell.
And now, of course, we have to wonder how this happened: Does America share my opinion that Mike is an infuriatingly arrogant, camera-whoring oaf whose every movement is so tasteless and hopelessly out-dated that even his admittedly impressive voice winds up being nowhere near enough to redeem him? Or is it simply a question of demographics—of the show’s audience being young and white enough to fall for people like Tim Urban and Aaron Kelly?
Tempting as it is to chalk it up to race, it’s also worth noting that America has a hard time voting for contestants who seem to think. Go back to earlier in the season and consider the case of Lily Scott, an outstanding and genuinely interesting singer who was sent packing way before her time, primarily, it seemed, because she had sort of a bad attitude: she thought she was cooler than the show, that she knew better than the judges. Maybe she was and maybe she did—who knows. The point, though, is that once you give people the sense that you don’t care about or need their votes because, pff, you’re gonna be alright no matter what, well, then you stop getting them.