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'American Idol': 'American' cheese

Justin wins, but was Angela robbed?

Justin time: The best was saved for last when Justin's Wonder-ful rendition of ''Ribbon in the Sky'' wowed viewers.  

By Jessica Shaw
Entertainment Weekly

(Entertainment Weekly) -- This week had the lusciously perfect Justin doing Stevie Wonder justice (unlike that pumpkin-head Gil), but beyond that, I didn't find the second round of contestants all that interesting.

Last week there was drama, tension, potential romance, and Kelli's hair. This week?

Sure, the underage Alexis had it going on, and Tenia's dress was worth a guffaw or two, but are we really going to remember Jazmin or Kelly after tonight? Oh, wait. Kelly actually made the cut. How is it possible that the utterly forgettable (even Simon admitted he couldn't remember her) ''R-E-S-P-E-C-T'' singer got a spot in the finals before Angela whose rendition of ''Run to You'' would have made Whitney proud? Still, Justin must have been relieved since she is no competition for him.

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Of course, neither is A.J., who somehow managed to draw criticism from the annoyingly nice Paula Abdul. The guy looks like 'N Sync, has a Backstreet Boy name, and sings O-Town? Hello, no career beyond 25!

Still, like Jim ''Moonlight Kisses'' Verraros before him, A.J. scored with the sympathy vote. Simon dissed him big time and America felt the need to defend our own (especially cause he sang the ''Star Spangled Banner'' in his first audition) against the Brit. ''I think there were better people on the show,'' Simon said to the clearly shocked winner tonight. Yeah, no duh.

A Backstreet Boy lookalike and a Texan singing Aretha join Justin in the finals, but [I] doubt either has a chance of winning it all.

Try pretty much everyone except Jamar (that's right, one name) whose version of ''Careless Whisper'' may yet send George Michael back to random men's bathrooms, and Alexandra, who would barely get an honorable mention at a high school talent show.

Onto more disturbing thoughts. I'm not sure which made me come closer to pukage: the ridiculous Ford product placement (at least Ryan and Brian weren't offering everyone Cokes this week), when Gil asked Paula out on a date, or when Paula said yes. Will Gil and Paula be on the cover of next week's Star? Has-been reality show hostess found canoodling with reject! What's up with all the contestants thinking Paula is such a hottie? Am I crazy or does she scream washed-up Laker Girl?

The most interesting part of the show may end up being who gets the judges' wild card vote. Last week I would have said that Chris had that spot locked up, but after this week's surprises, Alexis or Angela may find themselves competing for the record contract. By the way, I have a newfound respect for Alexis who lost with dignity and charm...which is more than I can say about that hideous Kelli. That's right, people. Any opportunity I can get to take Kelli down one notch further, I'm there. Got a problem with that?

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