Well, third place and the esteemed titles of Best-Dressed and Mr. Congeniality ain't bad. Joshua Ledet, the 20-year-old pride of Westlake, Louisiana, headed home on tonight's results show. It's not right, but it's okay. There's certainly no rule that says the best singer and performer will win American Idol. I'm not surprised we'll have a Jessica Sanchez vs. Phillip Phillips finale.
Instead of crying for Josh, I'm just glad he made it this far and got to bring his mom onstage for his swan song, "It's a Man's Man's Man's World." I almost threw my water bottle (full of tears I've collected over the season) at the TV when the credits brutally cut off the end of his performance. But no. Happy thoughts. This was the Top 3! Anyone could have gone. I'm not mad. Besides, where would the episode have been without J. Lo rambling for 45 seconds about NOTHING before Ryan delivered the verdict? I know I needed that. "Big moment."
Even though Jimmy Iovine thought Wednesday was "not Joshua's best night," he called him "the most exciting showman we have" and argued that "100 percent he should be in anyone's finale." Anyone's! Do you have a finale? Joshua should be in that one instead.
EW.com readers agreed with Jimmy: At post time, 60 percent of you thought the wrong contestant went home. But in a poll that asked who gave the best performances Wednesday night, Joshua lagged behind Jessica by 10 percent and Phillip by 15. Interesting. Since when am I obsessed with stats? NO MORE NUMBERS. No more numbers in this recap.
I thought Jessica was going home tonight. The judges and Jimmy have set up a nice little comeback arc for her for next week -- all she needs to do now is choose the right songs (or have them chosen for her) and she can wildly outdo herself compared to this week's efforts. Phillip, on the other thigh, may have peaked performance-wise on Wednesday with "Beggin'" and "We've Got Tonight." I predict Jessica will ramp up the energy big time next week and Phillip will maintain his usual temperature of "totally chill." So Jessica could definitely appeal to viewers looking for an exciting finale. But if Phillip accidentally starts caressing his chest mid-song on Tuesday instead of his upper leg, then forget it.
Esteemed Colleague's Mom Email Interlude:
Why thanks, Kristen Baldwin's mom! The cat really drives home the strength of your opinions.
NEXT: Adam Lambert trespasses; Lisa Marie Presley goths out