Simon Cowell says Melinda should be in the finals after relatively boring final three perform

Except for the part of the show when Jordan stood next to Ryan Seacrest and it looked like one of those forced perspective illusions where a kid appears bigger than an adult, the penultimate American Idol 6 performance show was kind of boring. Not even Simon Cowell asking Ryan Seacrest if he was drunk could bring the show to life.

Sure, the three finalists delivered three strong performances each, singing that was mostly consistent with their previous work. In other words, there were no surprises. Although Simon made fun of her, Paula Abdul’s critique of continually strong Melinda actually made sense, because there’s not much praise left to offer. “What else can we say? We love you, we love you, and we love you,” she said, and Simon replied, “That’s why we hired you for this show, Paula.”

For his part, Simon said that Melinda needs to be in the finals next week because of her continually strong performances. “If I’m going to award a place in the final to the person who has consistently delivered week after week, it’s you,” he said. He didn’t say the same about Blake or Jordin.

All three of the finalists visited their hometowns, but mercifully, the resulting segments were maybe 15 or 30 seconds each. Local politicians–two mayors and a governor–can’t act at all, especially not while trying to grandstand, as each did a horrible job pretending that they’d just been handed a “fax” that contained the name of the judges’ song choice for that finalist.

Each finalist was also honored in some way; Melinda had a street named after her, while Jordin got a star. “This is the mall I used to work at; my first job, and I have a star at the bottom of the escalators. People can walk all over me now,” she said, with less disappointment than she should have had considering that they put her star in the mall by the escalators.