'American Idol' Really, Really Wants a Girl to Win this Season

The judges narrowed the Top 10 men down to an unimpressive roster of guys -- are they pushing voters to pick a woman as the next Idol champ?

"It's absolutely a girl's year to win," American Idol judge Keith Urban said in a conference call with reporters last Wednesday. But now that he and his fellow judges have picked the 10 guys and 10 girls that fans will vote upon, it almost seems like they're pushing viewers in that direction. The show hasn't exactly handed us a compelling group of guys here.

Urban, Nicki Minaj, Randy Jackson and Mariah Carey would no doubt say that they can't control the talent pool. If the male contestants are lame, that's not their fault. True, but out of the several thousand male contestants who auditioned, these 10 were the best? Really?

Watching the sudden death rounds for the guys, we couldn't help but notice that the ones who were sent home also tended to be, well, some of the cutest ones. As if the judges (or maybe the producers) were working to curb the teen girl vote, hunky singers like Johnny Keyser (who looks like a J Crew model) and Chris Watson (who actually is a totally ripped model) were shown the door last week. And the trend continued on Thursday night, when cutie-pie Bryant Tadeo got the boot, followed by the handsome singer-songwriter Josh Holiday.

What guys did they decide to put up against this year's admittedly powerful group of girls? Burnell Taylor, who looks and dresses like Steve Urkel from Family Matters. Charlie Askew, who's lovable -- but like a puppy, not like a pop star. Then there's Lazaro Arbos, whose ability to overcome his stutter by singing makes for a compelling story. But the guy cries all the time. Do the judges really think America's going to make him their next Idol? Not likely. And the rest of the guys just aren't that memorable.

Meanwhile, this group of girls features vocal powerhouses like Candice Glover, model-esque beauties like Aubrey Cleland, and totally out-there curveballs like Zoanette Johnson. Urban thinks this is a girls' year to win? Uh, yeah. The only way the guys have a chance is if the females all catch a nasty stomach bug and fail to show up. Here are the Top 20:


1. Janelle Arthur

2. Aubrey Cleland

3. Amber Holcomb

4. Angie Miller

5. Candice Glover

6. Kree Harrison

7. Zoanette Johnson

8. Adriana Latonio

9. Breanna Steer

10. Tenna Torres


1. Lazaro Arbos

2. Charlie Askew

3. Nick Boddington

4. Curtis Finch, Jr.

5. Paul Jolley

6. Elijah Liu

7. Vincent Powell

8. Cortez Shaw

9. Burnell Taylor

10.Devin Velez

Next up: The live shows! On Tuesday and Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET, the finalists will perform live, and viewers will finally get to vote. On Thursday, the Top 10 will be revealed. If Urkel survives the week, we'll be very surprised.

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