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American Idol Season 7 Episodes

42 Episodes 2008 - 2008

The battle of the Davids (hard-rockin' Cook vs. teen heartthrob Archuleta) was the highlight of a scandal-ridden Season 7.\ The contestants in 2008 spanned the usual array of styles. Among them: sweet, folksy Brooke White, country girl Kristy Lee Cook, tattooed Irish-born rocker Carly Smithson, soulful Australian Michael Johns and laid-back, dreadlocked Jason Castro. But Cook and Archuleta stole the spotlight early on. In the first year contestants were allowed to play musical instruments, both men showcased their abilities, with Cook on guitar and Archuleta on piano. Cook stood out with his song choices and the renditions he chose on tunes such as "Billie Jean" and "Eleanor Rigby." But the boyish grin and consistently strong vocals of 17-year-old Archuleta had his popularity skyrocketing, especially with younger viewers. In fact, neither performer ever landed in the dreaded "bottom three," which made for a nail-biting finale. Archuleta was the media favorite, but Cook garnered 12 million more votes from viewers. The theme weeks in Season 7 challenged the vocalists to perform songs from the 1980s, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Neil Diamond, Dolly Parton, Mariah Carey and the Lennon-McCartney catalog. But they tackled even bigger obstacles with the PR scandals that erupted: from one contestant's lap-dancer past to inappropriate Internet photos and videos, and a controlling stage dad, the "Idol" spin doctors stayed hard at work. Even the judges weren't safe, as questions swirled around Paula Abdul's scattered behavior and her critique of two songs performed by Castro after he only sang one.

Episode 1

Auditions #1: Philadelphia

Tue, Jan 15, 2008 120 mins

The seventh season begins with auditions in Philadelphia.

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Episode 2

Auditions #2: Dallas

Wed, Jan 16, 2008 120 mins

The early auditions continue in Dallas.

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Episode 3

Week 2A: Auditions 3

Tue, Jan 22, 2008 61 mins

Auditions continue.

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Episode 4

Week 2B: Auditions 4

Wed, Jan 23, 2008 61 mins

Auditions continue.

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Episode 5

Week #3A: Auditions 5

Tue, Jan 29, 2008 60 mins

Auditions continue.

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Episode 6

Week #3B: Auditions 6

Wed, Jan 30, 2008 61 mins

Auditions continue.

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Episode 7

Week 4A: Auditions 7: Atlanta

Tue, Feb 5, 2008 60 mins

Auditions continue in Atlanta.

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Episode 8

Week 4B

Wed, Feb 6, 2008 62 mins

Auditions continue.

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Episode 9

Hollywood Round

Tue, Feb 12, 2008 120 mins

Contestants endure a grueling rehearsal and audition schedule during the Hollywood round as they try to make the Top 24.

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Episode 10

Top 24 Chosen

Wed, Feb 13, 2008 62 mins

The Top 24 are chosen, including 12 females and 12 males.

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Episode 11

12 Boys Compete

Tue, Feb 19, 2008 120 mins

The Top 12 male singers perform songs from the 1960s.

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Episode 12

12 Girls Compete

Wed, Feb 20, 2008 120 mins

The Top 12 women perform songs from the 1960s.

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Episode 13

4 Voted Off

Thu, Feb 21, 2008 60 mins

Four contestants---two women and two men---are voted off in the season's first results show.

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Episode 14

10 Boys Compete

Tue, Feb 26, 2008 90 mins

The Top 10 male singers perform songs from the 1970s.

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Episode 15

10 Girls Compete

Wed, Feb 27, 2008 90 mins

The Top 10 female singers perform songs from the 1970s.

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Episode 16

4 Voted Off

Thu, Feb 28, 2008 60 mins

Four contestants---two males and two females---are voted off.

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Episode 17

8 Boys Compete

Tue, Mar 4, 2008 60 mins

The eight remaining male contestants perform songs from the 1980s.

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Episode 18

8 Girls Compete

Wed, Mar 5, 2008 60 mins

The eight remaining female contestants perform songs from the 1980s.

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Episode 19

4 Voted Off

Thu, Mar 6, 2008 60 mins

Two males and two females are voted off, and the 12 finalists are revealed. Also: Blake Lewis sings "How Many Words."

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Episode 20

12 Finalists Compete

Tue, Mar 11, 2008 120 mins

The 12 finalists perform Lennon-McCartney songs.

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Episode 21

1 of 12 Voted Off

Wed, Mar 12, 2008 62 mins

One of the 12 finalists is voted off.

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Episode 22

11 Finalists Compete

Tue, Mar 18, 2008 120 mins

The 11 remaining finalists perform songs by John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

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Episode 23

1 of 11 Voted Off

Wed, Mar 19, 2008 62 mins

Kellie Pickler performs "Red High Heels" and one of the 11 remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 24

10 Finalists Compete

Tue, Mar 25, 2008 90 mins

The 10 remaining contestants perform songs from the year of their birth.

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Episode 25

1 of 10 Voted Off

Wed, Mar 26, 2008 60 mins

Kimberley Locke performs "Fall," and one of the 10 remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 26

9 Finalists Compete

Tue, Apr 1, 2008 60 mins

Dolly Parton coaches the nine remaining finalists, who then perform her songs.

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Episode 27

1 of 9 Voted Off

Wed, Apr 2, 2008 60 mins

Dolly Parton sings "Jesus & Gravity" and the Clark Brothers, the first-season winners of "Next Great American Band," perform. Later, one of the nine remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 28

8 Finalists Compete

Tue, Apr 8, 2008 60 mins

The eight remaining finalists perform inspirational songs.

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Episode 29

Idol Gives Back

Wed, Apr 9, 2008 150 mins

The "Idol Gives Back" fund-raiser for U.S. and international charities features appearances by Barack Obama, John McCain, Hillary Clinton, Bono, Mariah Carey, Billy Crystal, Miley Cyrus, Chris Daughtry, Celine Dion, Fergie, John Legend, Annie Lennox, Eli Manning, Peyton Manning, Maroon 5, Brad Pitt, Snoop Dogg, Kiefer Sutherland, Carrie Underwood, Robin Williams and Reese Witherspoon. The 2007 event raised $76 million for charity.

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Episode 30

1 of 8 Voted Off

Thu, Apr 10, 2008 60 mins

Chris Brown and Jordin Sparks perform "No Air," and one of the eight remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 31

Episode 31

Tue, Apr 15, 2008 62 mins

The seven remaining finalists perform songs by Mariah Carey.

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Episode 32

Episode 32

Wed, Apr 16, 2008 60 mins

Mariah Carey performs, and one of the remaining seven finalists is voted off.

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Episode 33

6 Finalists Compete

Tue, Apr 22, 2008 60 mins

The six remaining finalists perform songs by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

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Episode 34

1 of 6 Voted Off

Wed, Apr 23, 2008 60 mins

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Leona Lewis perform, and one of the six remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 35

5 Finalists Compete

Tue, Apr 29, 2008 62 mins

The five remaining finalists perform songs by Neil Diamond.

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Episode 36

1 of 5 Voted Off

Wed, Apr 30, 2008 60 mins

Neil Diamond performs "Amazing Grace" and Natasha Bedingfield sings "Pocketful of Sunshine." Later, one of the five remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 37

4 Finalists Compete

Tue, May 6, 2008 62 mins

The top four finalists perform.

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Episode 38

1 of 4 Voted Off

Wed, May 7, 2008 60 mins

One of the four remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 39

3 Finalists Compete

Tue, May 13, 2008 62 mins

The final three contestants, David Archuleta, David Cook and Syesha Mercado, perform three songs each. They sing a judges' choice, a producers' choice and a song of their own choice.

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Episode 40

1 of 3 Voted Off

Wed, May 14, 2008 60 mins

One of the three remaining finalists is voted off.

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Episode 41

Episode 41

Tue, May 20, 2008 62 mins

The two finalists perform at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in the seventh season's penultimate episode.

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Episode 42

Winner Announced

Wed, May 21, 2008 120 mins

The winner of Season 7 is announced. Also: The Top 12 reunite on the stage at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live. Performers include Bryan Adams, George Michael, Graham Nash, OneRepublic, Seal, Ruben Studdard, Donna Summer and ZZ Top. Also appearing are Jack Black, Robert Downey Jr., the Jonas Brothers, Jimmy Kimmel, Gladys Knight, Mike Myers, Jordin Sparks, Ben Stiller and Carrie Underwood.

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