On “American Idol” this season, the show (alongside the executive producer Nigel Lythgoe) has done just about everything they can to make conspiracy theorists rolling around in rage. Why? No matter how good she may be (or that she gave the best performance of the season Wednesday night with her second performance), Haley Reinhart seems destined to be eliminated.
Why are the cards stacked against her? Here’s just a few examples:
- Out of the three remaining contestants, Haley is the only one we don’t know much about in terms of her home life. James Durbin has a young son while Lauren Alaina and Scotty McCreery have a backstory of being small-town kids with big dreams — what does Haley have?
- The other three contestants were given more attention through both the auditions and Hollywood Week — almost as if the show wanted us to make sure we knew who they were from the get-go.
- Now, we have the judges — we have to admit that Haley’s “Earth Song” was one of the weaker vocals she’s had in recent weeks. However, why should she be criticized while Lauren is praised for dropping notes left and right? Why is James Durbin praised for singing a karaoke version of Journey? Haley should be criticized for her mistakes — but so should everyone else.
- To cap it off, we have the sort of firing-squad atmosphere set up by Ryan Seacrest dragging the top four on stage Wednesday night so that Randy could praise everyone but Haley.
So what does the show’s darkhorse contestant have to say about the way the cards are being played this season? She’s trying to stay positive — but she did suggest to Entertainment Weekly that it does appear as if she is being held to a different standard than the other contestants at this point:
“As much as they might want me to [break down], or try to [get me to], or whatever it is, I’m not going to. I think they know I can be very strong-willed and everything else, and that’s why they gave [the criticism] to me. I mean, they did tell me, ‘We know what’s in you so we do this to you because we [makes grunting noise] you can take it, and we want everything that’s inside of you come out.’ You know, I take that in stride. I realize it, accept it.”
Do you think producers are trying to force someone like Lauren or James ahead of Haley? Let’s face it — Scotty is winning this season no matter what happens.
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