My girl Dilana earned major points tonight, thanks to the other singers' fear of a Tommy/Patrice situation. Last week, you'll recall, Patrice ended up in the bottom three when she sang along to Tommy Lee's drumming, with a widespread view that she was overshadowed by the drummer -- a perception fueled by very Tommy-friendly lighting and editing.
Anyway, this week offered a chance to perform with Gilby on the Who's ''Won't Get Fooled Again.'' While I can see someone wanting to pass because the song has become a bit trite -- indeed, ''CSI'' has done severe damage to the Who canon through overexposure -- the given reason, and not a good one, was that nine of the singers -- nine wusses -- didn't want to risk what happened to Patrice.
Dilana took the song, took the stage with Gilby and sounded just fine. Not my favorite Dilana performance but good enough. I'll give it a B plus.
Next up: The unfortunate Jill, unfortunately performing ''Mother Mother'' and making me wish that they'd replayed Dilana instead. D.
Then Ryan, hot off a showpiece a week ago, showing off again with stagecraft on ''Paint It Black.'' But I wasn't impressed. C.
Storm, ''We Are the Champions.'' Another akkkk choice, because the song is heard sooooo much. Her vocal was not consistently strong, but she knows how to work a crowd. B minus.
Zayra, ''All The Young Dudes.'' Skin-tight gold unitardy-suit, top hat, giant boots recalling Elton in ''Pinball Wizard.'' Last week, she was hilariously terrible. This week, merely terrible. F.
Josh. Having ducked the Gilby thing, he seems to be in a jam when Tommy decides to play with him; oourse, that assumes that he didn't find this out, oh, in rehearsal. They've sure worked out a lot of lighting for Tommy. Not as much as it seemed with Patrice a week ago, though. And as bored as I usually am by Josh, his work on STP's ''Interstate Love Song'' seems livelier than usual. He still looks half asleep when he's asked to talk, but the song's all right. C plus.
Magni's gotten a lot of sympathy footage already, with his woman and child having arrived; they were in the mansion footage at the beginning of the show, and they're in the audience for the performance. (Thank goodness someone gave the kid headphones.) Song: "The Dolphin's Cry.'' Acoustic, solo, able, but I'm still not totally magni-fied. B.
Patrice. ''Instant Karma.'' Feels like a big mistake, and she starts badly, and falls back on a fair amount of shouty singing, which would have worked for John Lennon but not quite for her. Tough for me, because she has some likability. I just don't think you could see that likability in the nosebleed section of some arena. C.
Lukas, ''Creep.'' Well, there's my whole analysis.
All right, I listened to the performance and thought he was good until he got to the big shout near the end, when he reminded everyone that, as a rock singer, his range is quite limited. I give him a C, but that's a pretty high mark for a performer I really hate.
Toby closes with ''Burning Down the House.'' Oh, dear. Well, the band was unbelievable behind him. And he got better as he went along. I might have to listen to this one again, but for now I give it a C plus (and thought the megaphone bit sort of worked).
I'm feeling much less bored this week than I did last. Considerable improvement in the singing, it seemed, as if everyone has finally figured out that this is a competition every week.