Pia Toscano Pia Toscano

Now we have a show, people!

A few weeks back, Watercooler gave some major love to American Idol's Casey Abrams, suggesting that he had all that it takes to take the title. But last night, shortly after Casey did just OK with his Motown choice, Pia Toscano turned in yet another killer ballad that made us go both "wow" and "well, she sure could walk off with the win."

And girl would look damn fine doing so, too. Decked out in backless black perfection, hair pulled back and packing the kind of pipes we've heard on the best of Idols gone by (J-Hud, Carrie, Kelly), the stunning 22-year-old New York native nailed Stevie Wonder's "All is Fair in Love" so cleanly, the only thing the judges could complain about is that she does too many ballads. Not that she was pitchy or flat. Not that she hadn't connected with the song. Not even that she had picked the wrong song. Just too many ballads. Odd, since they have no issue with the fact that James Durbin always feels like he's fronting a Winger cover band, or that Jacob Lusk hasn't met a note he didn't force into an overwrought wail. And don't get us started on the judges' actually condoning Naima's spastic dance breaks.

Still, aside from this minor nit about Pia's style of choice, her performance clearly speaks (sings?) for itself. She was assured, restrained but not dull, completely in her zone and — most importantly, because this is a singing competition — she sounded ahh-may-zinnnng. So could she do with mixing it up? Maybe. Could we do with Pia scoring that recording contract? Definitely. As Steven said, she is the closest thing to a star in this Idol universe already.

What do you think? Is Pia headed for the finale, or has someone else won your vote?

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