Alaina, Alexandrea, Jason, and Robbie leave; Alaina refuses to sing; Robbie’s hair defended

One of American Idol‘s weirdest traditions is having eliminated contestants sing. For one, they’ve been eliminated; that means voters don’t want to hear that person sing, yet that’s what they do. In addition, the contestant is usually sad or even crying, and thus it’s even harder than usual for them to sing well.

Last night, Alexandrea Lushington, Alaina Whitaker, Jason Yeager, and Robbie Carrico were eliminated. The most surprising elimination of the group, Alaina, gave the most surprising exit: She refused to sing.

“I can’t sing. Sorry. This is embarrassing,” she said, hugging Ryan Seacrest, who then filled time by praising her accomplishments and stating the obvious (“somebody has to go”). He then sought the judges’ help, and Paula babbled for a while.

But there was more time, so Ryan said, “because this is so emotional and tough, I’m going to give you a choice: if you want to sing, I’ll let you sing, if you don’t, I understand.” She said something about sounding “horrible.” The other women joined her on stage, and she said, “I’ll sing, it’s going to sound horrible, but…” She then refused to let the show’s weirdest tradition die by actually singing. (Watch the video.)

As to the other eliminated contestants, former Britney Spears boyfriend Robbie Carrico has been the subject of debate this week–not about his singing or his dating habits, but about his hair. Simon Cowell called him a fake rocker, and he’s basically being accused of having fake hair, a wig. But his Missing Picket bandmate Kevin Scott told MTV News, “Robbie does not wear a wig. I’ve talked to him about some of the pictures they’ve taken, and the way they style his hair, the way his bangs were overlapping, I guess it kind of looks like that. I’ve know him for six years now, and I think I’d know if he had a wig on. He lived in my house six, seven months, and I never saw him without his hair on.”

And Robbie told reporters, “I’ve been growing this hair for a very long time. It’s ridiculous that [the media] have to come up with something like that.”

American Idol – Results – Alaina vs Kady [YouTube]
‘American Idol’ Castoff Robbie Carrico: Is He Wearing A Wig? Bandmate Says No … [MTV News]
Idol’s Robbie Carrico: “I’ve Been Growing This Hair a Very Long Time” [People]

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.