Noah Wyle, <EM>ER</EM> Noah Wyle, ER
American Idol
At the top of the show, Ryan Seacrest announced that he had good news and bad news. Four more people would leave, but Season 4 winner

Carrie Underwood was on hand to perform. And I was left wondering where the good news was. The "original farm girl" took the stage to tepid applause, but Melissa McGhee was up on the balcony singing right along and studying every stage move... all one of them. I just hope the next Idol winner can move more than one arm at a time. Naturally, before elimination time we had to suffer through another awful group song. I'll give a Reader's Digest version of my notes: bad attempt at harmony, bad camera angle, bad outfits, extremely bad dancing. Can't wait for the cheesy group commercial jingles, where we get, to quote Simon Cowell, "ghastly" singing and acting. Sigh. On the upside, the four people who left tonight were the most sensible choices. Three of them departed with very classy, appreciative goodbyes. And Brenna went home, too. I was disappointed actually. No fireworks, no "bling, bling, you are all coal" references, no daggers shooting from her eyes. And so we said bye to the muggiest camera mugger who ever mugged in Mugville with one final lingering camera pose. At least she has a nifty li'l Ace beanie to sell on eBay someday. Wasn't it enough to put Kevin through the Chicken Little comparisons? Now they made him think he was in the bottom two. What, is Ryan researching his next book, How to Torture Teens? Finally, the judges may have had their most bizarre evening in five seasons. They were snickering and giggling like Helen Hunt about to plunge through a window in a bad after-school special. Maybe she can fly, but you three? Not so much. Ken McGilvray