So who saw this coming on “American Idol?” It’s not so much the results that were shocking, but how fast they eliminated semi-finalists to reach the Top 12, which was actually at Top 13. It was truly one of the most exciting episodes I can remember, and as always, there were some good choices and bad choices by both America and the judges.

It went down like this….there were ten seats to the left of Ryan Seacrest, and they would be filled from the 24 seats to Seacrest’s right based on America’s 40 million votes. The Top 5 guys and Top 5 ladies would fill those seats. But after that, the judges would choose three guys and three gals to sing for their lives in order to fill the remaining two chairs as wild cards. Really? They were going to do all of that in two hours? Well, yes they were, and yes they did.

First, Seacrest invited the contestants down to the middle of the stage in groups. First up, Scotty McCreery and Robbie Rosen. Only Scotty made the Top 10, and Robbie was relegated to waiting to see if he’d have a shot at the wild card. Wow. That kid showed so much promise and this is just a testament to how talented the field is this season. This went on for about an hour and a half, and here were the results….

Top 10—Scotty McCreery, Pia Toscano, Lauren Alaina, Karen Rodriguez, Casey Abrams, Jacob Lusk, Thia Meghia, Paul McDonald, Haley Reinhart, and James Durbin.

Not in the Top 10—Robbie Rosen, Clint Jun Gamboa, Jordan Dorsey, Jovanny Baretta, Ta-Tanysha Wilson, Julie Zorrilla, Kendra Chantelle, Ashton Jones, Tim Halperin, Naima Adedapo, Lauren Turner, Brett Loewenstern, Rachel Zevita, and Stefano Langone.

The judges then chose their wild cards—Robbie, Stefano and Jovanny; and Ashton, Kendra, and Naima.

Ashton went first and sang “And I Am Telling You” by Jennifer Hudson, and I’m sorry, I don’t get why they chose her. This reeked of Simon Cowell and the fact that J-Lo called her a diva on Wednesday night. She did not deserve that shot more than Lauren Turner did.

Stefano was next and sang “I Need You Now,” and it was just awesome. I wondered why he didn’t just sing that one on Tuesday.

Kendra sang “Georgia on My Mind” but did way too many vocal acrobatics with it.

Jovanny sang “Won’t Let Me Go” which I believe is a Jon Secada song, and he also tried to pull a Karen Rodriguez and sing half of it in Spanish. But hey, he really belted this one and probably would have made the Top 10 had he chosen this one on Tuesday instead of that sappy Edwin McCain song.

Naima did Donnie Hathaway’s “For All We Know” and really brought it, again.

And finally Robbie did Elton John’s “Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word,” the same song he sang in order to reach the Top 24. It was great again, but was it enough?

Then they showed J-Lo’s new video (gotta pimp your own, right?) and it was all auto-tuned just like everything else on pop radio today. Plus it was distracting with all of her outfit changes and with that dude singing and rapping counter to her. Very strange, but hey, it was better than Paula Abdul!

And then, the moment of truth. Who would be the wild cards? First, Ashton. Are you freaking kidding me? She should not have had that chance, let alone should not have reached the finals. Yikes. Next, Stefano, who did deserve it. But wait, there was more….a Top 13?? Yes, and Naima got the final spot. Whew. I thought she blew Ashton out of the water and was glad she also made it, but not that Ashton got in at the expense of Robbie. That just sucked, and I can guarantee that Ashton will be one of the first to be booted off.
And then I have a problem with Karen Rodriguez making it in too, but she did that on the strength of, well, appealing to the Hispanic community. I also didn’t think Thia deserved a spot over Lauren T, but that’s all on America.

So there you have it folks—your Top 13 finalists on “American Idol!” I guess I should rank them power rankings style and we’ll do this each week…..

1. Casey Abrams
2. Lauren Alaina
3. Jacob Lusk
4. Scotty McCreery
5. Paul McDonald
6. Pia Toscano
7. Naima Adedapo
8. James Durbin
9. Haley Reinhart
10. Stefano Langone
11. Thia Meghia
12. Karen Rodriguez
13. Ashton Jones

Thanks for reading folks, and see you all next week!