by Free Britney at . Comments

Who's on easy street and who's on the chopping block tonight? After last night's American Idol performances, we've done our best to answer that.

Believe it or not, a Kristy Lee Cook elimination actually looks unlikely tonight, as her rendition of "God Bless the USA" was well received. She was also right in between favorites David Archuleta and David Cook, which should help.

Our picks for the bottom three have to be Ramiele Malubay, Syesha Mercado and Chikezie. Syesha Mercado did alright last night, all things considered, so of those three, we'd imagine Ramiele and Chikezie to be the lowest vote-getters.

When in doubt (and Sanjaya Malakar is not involved), we go with Simon Cowell. His feedback on Ramiele was fair last night and Chikezie has been running out of steam for awhile now. Thus, Chikezie is our prediction to go home tonight.

The Hollywood Gossip's American Idol predictions, by tier ...

Bottom Three: Ramiele Malubay, Syesha Mercado and Chikezie.

Still Vulnerable: Kristy Lee Cook, Brooke White and Jason Castro.

Secure in Final 9: Carly Smithson and Michael Johns.

The Favorites: David Archuleta and David Cook.

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As always, the People magazine staffers went behind the scenes of last night's edition of American Idol and dug up some great dirt - as well as funny anecdotes and other moments that were great, but you didn't see on TV. Here are some excerpts ...

Screams and Signs

Baylie Brown Photo

It's pretty apparent that fans are starting to pick their favorite American Idol stars, as definitive favorites can be read in signs across the audience, as in "I [heart] Brooke White," "We [heart] Michael Johns," or "We Love You Carly."

An American Idol Birthday

Debbie the stage manager urgently called over the PA system during the break â€" "Ryan Seacrest, I need you! Ryan Seacrest, I need you!"

Finally, Ryan headed over to see what was so important. Moments later, the host came out carrying a large white and blue frosted cake with burning birthday candles. Next, all the American Idol stars, judges, the entire crew and audience began to sing "Happy Birthday" to Jason Castro, helping him celebrate the big 2-1 - Idol style!

Who Will It Be?

No matter what David Archuleta says or sings (even obscure Australian songs nobody has ever heard of), the female fans in the audience go wild whenever his name is mentioned or even when he steps onto the stage.

But Tuesday, when Ryan Seacrest asked the 17-year-old star if he'll be going to his high school prom and, if so, whom David Archuleta be bringing, all the teenagers in the pit started going wild, yelling, "Take me, David! Take me!"

A usually shy Archuleta wouldn't let anything slip, even when Ryan asked if the mystery girl sitting in the crowd next to his father would be the lucky one.

A Hard Worker

Almost tripping on her way backstage â€" if not for her faithful bodyguard to save her â€" judge Paula Abdul spent most of the commercial breaks greeting the many teenage girls or "the hand-wavers" inside the American Idol mosh-pit.

Faces in the Crowd

Shar Jackson laughed up a storm when the monitor showed David Archuleta and his sister doing a dance as children. Also back, former Idol Danny Noriega, who spent the night close to his pal Ramiele Malubay's family, sitting in the front row.

Randy Saw Red & Simon Was Red

Somebody definitely had a "Case of the Mondays" on this Tuesday, as Randy Jackson was consistently finding fault in some of the better moments.

But even though Jackson was the hot-headed judge, why was it Cowell with the red face literally? Could it be that the judge, who loves summer water sports, forgot to put on sunscreen at the beach? Simon, you may need to find a stronger SPF.

by Free Britney at . Comments

Aside from the performance of David Cook, one of the biggest revelations of last night's episode of American Idol may not have taken place on stage.

Sitting right next to David Archuleta's father in the American Idol audience was ... wait for it ... his girlfriend! Yes, the 17-year-old is off the market!

David Archuleta Girlfriend!

After David Archuleta performed on American Idol Tuesday, he received generally positive comments from the judges while his dad and girlfriend looked on.

While millions of teenage girls may have had their hearts broken by this news, one woman is happy about it: Carly Smithson. She was by far the most hated person on American Idol this season before this news. Now she's got competition!

Then again, David Archuleta is still oh-so-young, and we've all seen in the past what the fame of American Idol does to pre-existing relationships
.

Our favorite, Carrie Underwood, broke up with her boyfriend after she won, while Anthony Fedorov broke up with a girlfriend publicly on the Internet after the show, Haley Scarnato called off her engagement, Bucky Covington got a divorce, etc.

Keep hope alive, David Archuleta lovers!

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Tuesday's American Idol featured the top 10 contestants performing songs from the year they were born. You'll be happy to know that not a single contestant â€" they are all far too young â€" sang anything by the Beatles, for a change!

It was a night of strong performances, but one stole the show.

Born in 1982, David Cook finished out the night with a stunning, brave performance of Michael Jackson's "Billie Jean." Cook slowed the dance track down, rocked it out and created an entirely new vibe for a very familiar song.

Randy Jackson described it as "original," "bold" and "molten hot." Paula Abdul was "blown away" while Simon Cowell, acknowledging the risk of changing the song so much, remarked on the singer's bravery and called David Cook "amazing."

David Cook might be the new frontrunner on American Idol after this.

Earlier, defying expectations, Kristy Lee Cook finally had a good night!

The cutie chose to perform "God Bless the U.S.A.," by Lee Greenwood from 1984, adding her familiar country twang. The judges liked it and praised Kristy Lee Cook for picking a both a "poignant" and "respectful" song.

Simon Cowell called it the "most clever" song choice he'd heard in years. We are pretty sure he was actually serious, as well.

The judges also seemed to like David Archuleta but only Cowell seemed to recognize his song (He sang "You're the Voice" by John Farnham).

They weren't quite feeling Carly Smithson, although she mastered "Total Eclipse of the Heart," but they loved Michael Johns, who combined two Queen songs, opening with "We Will Rock You" and finishing with "We Are the Champions."

But David Cook definitely owned the night.

Randy called him "the most original, the most bold contestant we've ever had" and suggested he "might be the one to win the whole lot."

Could Jackson be right? You tell us. Who do you think had the best - and the worst - performances from Tuesday's American Idol?

Here's David Cook doing "Billie Jean" from last night ...

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-Ke1zCWgI8[/youtube]

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Tonight, the remaining American Idol aspirants will sing songs from the year they were born (feel old yet?), but thanks to moles at TMZ, we have got the song list for you right here already! Here's what we can look forward to ...

  • Syesha Mercado - 1987's "If I Were Your Woman" by Stephanie Mills
  • David Cook - 1983's "Billie Jean" by Michael Jackson
  • Carly Smithson -- 1983's "Total Eclipse of the Heart" by Bonnie Tyler
  • Chikezie -- 1985's "If Only For One Night" by Luther Vandross
  • Brooke White -- 1983's "Every Breath You Take" by The Police
  • Jason Castro -- 1987's "Fragile" by Sting
  • Ramiele Malubay -- 1987's "Alone" by Heart
  • Michael Johns -- 1978's "We Are the Champions" by Queen
  • Kristy Lee Cook (pictured) -- 1984's "God Bless the USA" by Lee Greenwood
  • David Archuleta -- 1990's "You're the Voice" by David Foster

Will this be the night Kristy Lee Cook's luck finally runs out? Or will her devoted fans keep bailing her out with another last-second reprieve from the bottom three?

Who will shine - or fade into obscurity - on American Idol tonight? We can't wait to find out. Let us know your thoughts, and we'll have a recap for you in the morning!

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With 10 American Idol hopefuls ready to throw down tonight, it's only appropriate that fifth season finalist Katharine McPhee celebrates her 24th birthday today!

That, or it's just a coincidence.

Either way, we wish Katharine McPhee the happiest of birthdays on this 25th of March. At the very least, it gives us an excuse to run this hot photo!

She may be having trouble staying with a record label these days, but you can see why Nick Cokas signed Katharine to a lifetime contract, right?

When does your favorite star celebrate the anniversary of his or her birth? Who is up next? Confer with our celebrity birthdays calendar now and see!

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That didn't take long.

Rejected American Idol hopeful David Hernandez has come to the Big Apple to audition for the cast of Broadway's "Rent."

Guess that beats stripping for a living.

Celebrity news site TMZ spotted David on his way into town, and when pressed about his tryout, all he said was he was auditioning for a show called "Lease."

"Lease" ... "Rent" ... Hmm ... What's David Hernandez telling us?

Hernandez also seemed bewildered by the big city, asking random strangers for help finding a car and asking a Hasidic Jew if he was a "Pilgrim."

When contacted for comment, "Rent" had none, but the Broadway production ends its 12-year run on June 1. Hopefully David can get on before then.

Hernandez was the first of the 12 finalists ousted from the Fox reality show this season, in what some pundits believe was a conspiracy.

The remaining 10 American Idol contestants go at it again tomorrow.

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Who's on the rise, who's stock is falling faster than a subprime mortgage lender's and who (cough, Kristy Lee Cook) will defy the odds and simply not go away?

It's time, once again, for our American Idol Power Poll!

His Final Song

Feel free to write in and voice your thoughts on our rankings. We welcome all comments as we're just fans like you. Here's how we see it right now ...

1. David Archuleta: Back on top of the poll after a solid rendition of "The Long and Winding Road." Most American Idol hopefuls suffered through the latest Beatles Week, but David Archuleta thrived a week after his toughest outing.

2. David Cook: Dark horse rocker may no longer be a dark horse - he's rising too high in opinion polls! He has a serious shot at capturing the title, we think.

David Archuleta (#1 in our poll) and Carly Smithson (#4) are in the hunt.

3. Brooke White: She was a bit uncomfortable away from the piano, but still the best of the ladies in the hunt to become the next American Idol so far.

4. Carly Smithson. Despite the controversy surrounding her background, Carly Smithson has been solid so far - one of the few consistent performers among the entire bunch, in fact - and we expect her to make the top five at least.

5. Michael Johns. Tough week last week, and that's putting it mildly. Still, we like his chances and expect a rebound from Johns tomorrow night.

On the bubble: Jason Castro, Ramiele Malubay, Syesha Mercado

On the block: Kristy Lee Cook, Chikezie

by Mischalova at . Comments

Few were shocked when Amanda Overmyer was given the boot on American Idol Wednesday night. Including Amanda herself.

"I just know how different I am," Overmyer told reporters during a Thursday conference call. "I know that I target an older audience and a different audience maybe than American Idol provides."

She also simply didn't sing "Back in the U.S.S.R." very well earlier in the week.

Amanda is Over(myer) and out. Which American Idol contestant will be the next to go? Kristy Lee Cook? Chikezie?

As for those American Idol judges and their comments Overmyer said: "When I was done singing, I was done singing. It's just kind of like when those judges would give their comments I just wanted to be respectful and listen, but the comments weren't going to sway me one way or the other as far as what I was going to do.

The objective of being on this show was to go up there and show America me, perform like me, and look like me, and see how well it would take.

The comments from the judges are based more on the idea of trying to win, and I just had a different agenda."

by Mischalova at . Comments

There was no surprise elimination on American Idol last night.

The two contestants that performed the worst on Tuesday - Kristy Lee Cook and Amanda Overmyer - were the final two left standing, as Ryan Seacrest milked every last second of the show for suspense, as usual.

In the end, rocker nurse Overmyer was voted off by viewers. The skunk-haired singer had shattered too many ear drums this week with her version of "Back in the U.S.S.R."

With Overmyer eliminated, Cook lives to look good and sing badly for at least another week. Hopefully, she'll let the world know again what she plans on doing to Simon.

American Idol Quotes

Brooke White's tears come from the authentic, good soul that she is. Her heart was breaking because she was overwhelmed with the experience she had with the show and the gift that it brought.

Paula Abdul [after Brooke White was eliminated on season seven]

I read some of this online this morning and just for the record, the rumors — they’re not true. She’s part of our family and we love her.

Ryan Seacrest [on rumor of Paula Abdul being drunk on the show]
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