American Idol Episodes

2002, TV Show

American Idol Episode: "4 Finalists Compete"

Season 8, Episode 35
Episode Synopsis: The final four singers take to the stage to deliver rock songs in a performance edition. Rock guitarist Slash (Guns n' Roses, Velvet Revolver) is the guest mentor.
Original Air Date: May 5, 2009
Guest Cast Slash

American Idol Episode Recap: The Top 3 Revealed Season 8, Episode 35

This critical results show was packed with tons of musical performances, but for one of our four hopefuls, the music stopped. So who rocked the stage and who rolled out the door after a record-setting 64 million votes were cast? Let's find out.

Hey guys, Adam Bryant filling in again for a vacationing Erin. She's in Hawaii, and last I heard, was asking the locals for tips on how to nab an exclusive interview with Lost's Smoke Monster. You heard it here first!

It was a night of firsts. In addition to 64 million votes (the most ever for a non-finale), Paula Abdul took the Idol stage for the first time and Season 5 alum Chris Daughtry was presented with a plaque certifying his first record as five-times platinum worldwide. Plus: No Doubt rocked out with one of their classic hits and mentor Slash laid down some wicked solos with Idols in their group performance. Not all of the musical numbers blew me away, but at least it provided better filler than Ryan dragging out the results. Let's take them one at a time.

Group Number
The Top 4 sang Alice Cooper's "School's Out." It was a pretty standard showcase of what each of the singers bring to the table, but the highlight for me was the pairing of Adam and Allison again. Their duet was great last night, and their few bars of harmonies tonight proved yet again that they make a great match. Slash did his thing, and ultimately got to plug his new super-secret album.

"I'm Just (Here for the Music)"
Paula Abdul lip synched. Shocking, right? To me the song is as generic as her single a year ago, but the staging of the performance is impressive. She has always been known for her dancing, so it was fine for her to show that off. I'm not sure why she thought she needed two microphones for her non-singing, but who's nitpicking? After a fireworks-backed ending, Paula tells her dancers-turned-paparazzi that she's just here for the music. Well, we know the mic does work.

No Doubt
Hello, 1995! With no new album to promote, the band chose to go old school with "I'm Just a Girl." Die-hard fans probably loved it — and it was a fun, frantic performance — but that song does Gwen Stefani favors vocally. She also nearly fell three or four times and inexplicably did a few push-ups in the middle of the performance. She still looks great, and the band is excited to hit the road, where they plan to write their next record.

After reliving the shocking elimination of Chris Daughtry that then led to his mega success, Chris and his band play the lead single from their new album, "No Surprise." I liked Chris on the show and thought the first album was a good effort, but there were definitely no surprises in the performance or the song. I hope the album has a little more growth from the first record than this first track showed. Of course, that five million record landmark proves that it will probably be a smash no matter what I think.

Ryan reminds the singers and us at home that the three crooners who remain will get to visit their hometown for the annual montages of parades, big crowds and tears. And what do you know, they show a montage of parades, big crowds and tears form the last few seasons! With that in mind, they get right to the results, which are revealed in random order (no bottom three this week). Ryan quick send Kris back to safety. He seems genuinely shocked, and even though he's who I am personally rooting for, I was as well. He was just a little safe last night, but I am glad he gets to stay. Sadly, my mind says: oh, no, Allison.

Ryan also sends Adam (shocker!) back to the stools, leaving Allison and Danny "Yaaaeaaeeeeaaaaah!" Gokey to face the music. I give props to Danny for laughing at himself and admitting that his final note in "Dream On" was brutal. I wish I found it as funny as he did, but still nice to see him showing some weakness. Despite the noise pollution, however, Danny is also safe, marking the end of the road for Allison.

I went back and forth on Allison all season, but she really is a sweetheart and, for me, showed tons of personality, despite what Simon said all season. She is young and has lots ahead of her, I'm sure. It sucks that she went out on rock week, but at least she had a song that really fit her voice to sing goodbye with.

So, what do you think of the boys' club Final 3? Are you sad to see Allison go? Who do you think will win? Vote below in our Power Rankings poll and check back next week as the Top 3 take the stage again!

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For the latest on American Idol, tune into TV Guide Network's Idol Tonight every Wednesday at 8 pm/ET and Idol Wrap every Friday at 8 pm/ET with co-hosts Kimberly Caldwell and Justin Guarini. Plus get more on your favorite Idols every Friday with American Idol Rewind at 7 pm/ET.

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This critical results show was packed with tons of musical performances, but for one of our four hopefuls, the music stopped. So who rocked the stage and who rolled out the door after a record-setting 64 million votes were cast? Let's find out. read more

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Premiered: June 11, 2002, on FOX
Rating: TV-PG
User Rating: (3,327 ratings)
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Premise: The smash reality series showcases wannabe pop stars competing for a record deal by crooning for a panel of judges, including, most entertainingly, the acid-tongued Simon Cowell, who departed the show in 2010 after serving for nine seasons. The judges review a performer's talent (or lack thereof), and at-home viewers then vote for their favorite potential star. The show helped launch the careers of such artists as Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson and Adam Lambert.



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