Elliott leaves American Idol 5; all three were within 310,000 votes of each other

Katharanie McPhee and Taylor Hicks are the final two American Idol 5 contestants after Elliott Yamin was eliminated.

During the elimination show, producers actually revealed the vote totals, at least in terms of percentages, and it was extremely close. Based upon the fact that Ryan Seacrest said there were 50 million votes (obviously not an exact figure), I’ve done the math to calculate the rough, inexact number of votes that each received. The breakdown:

33.06 percent: 16,530,000 votes / Elliott Yamin
33.26 percent: 16,630,000 votes
33.68 percent: 16,840,000 votes

Presumably, and it’s totally a presumption because we weren’t told who was second or who was third, Taylor had the largest percentage, but even if he did, 210,000 votes more than Katharine is hardly a substantial lead. As Ryan Seacrest said, it was “very close.”

One more week to go.

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.

A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.