Lucy Lawless, <EM>Veronica Mars</EM> Lucy Lawless, Veronica Mars
American Idol
San Francisco certainly had an odd effect on the judges, didn't it? After tonight they need to be called Snippy Simon and

Petulant Paula. As for Randy Jackson, well, he just did his thing, dawg. And his "thing" tonight was winding up Simon Cowell, who had become even testier than usual. But Simon did prove he might actually have a heart, even if it is 10 sizes too small, when he got nixed contestant Shalicia her job back. If you ask me, I think Mr. Fussy Pants just needed a nap... and a good pair of earplugs after several wretched auditions. One of the most painful was Matthew "Wolfie" Paulson, who compared himself to Clay Aiken. Sorry Wolfie, but I think Clay would only make those noises if the anesthesia wore off during invasive surgery. Shawn Vasquez's falsetto version of "Neither One of Us" certainly didn't help Mr. Cowell's state of mind, but at least Simon avoided saying something stupid about a dude singing a chick song. After all, Simon, GLAAD is watching, and they are even crankier than you. There was one bright spot before Simon starting saying "no" to everyone (who did he think he was, David Spade in a Capital One commercial?). The judges practically did back flips over Katherine McPhee. I knew she was a lock to go to Hollywood after seeing her mom-as-voice-coach story. What was up with Deborah Dawn, aka "Lady Big Hair"? I was sure she was really Molly Shannon in disguise, gearing up for a bad SNL skit, but no, she was there to stir up the da-raaama between the judges. Simon did go a bit too far; no "rock girl" wants to be told she looks like a "mom at a ghastly dress party." Next week Simon returns for the Las Vegas auditions, where the free cocktails from the casino should improve his mood considerably.