As American Idol took off for Las Vegas, the remaining 61 contestants were fully aware that a third of them would be cut after the coming Beatles round.
The emotional Ashley Sullivan, insisted along with duet partner Sophia Shorai that "We Can Work It Out." But maybe she should have spent more time working it out instead of rushing off to get married...
After a pitch-imperfect performance that was so nasal it hurt our sinuses, Ashley Suraiva, née Sullivan, was cut—but, wouldn't you know, she handled that way better than she did rehearsals and solo performances.
"How could I have wanted more from this? I've been to American Idol. That's sick," the newlywed said by way of farewell.
While we figured she would stick around until the Top 24, hats off to Idol for cutting a lesser singer despite the dramatic possibilities inherent in keeping Ashley around.
Other than her ouster, there weren't really any big shocks from the Vegas cuts (besides the scary number of contestants who had never heard a Beatles song before), and the most consistent hopefuls continued to perform at a high level.
Afterward, it was back to Los Angeles, where the remaining 40 performed yet again and then made that long, lonely walk to learn their Top 24 fate, half of them crying already by the time they sat down.
It was the usual procession, though, Randy Jackson, bless him, again made Clint Jun Gamboa—he of the "brilliant" San Francisco audition followed by the wretched dissing of Jacee Badeaux during group round—sweat for his supper. "There was some sort of discrepancy..." Randy rambled on, not quite calling a spade a spade, but forcing Clint to mutter some sort of BS excuse for kicking Jacee out of the group.
A great voice is a great voice, however, and the unlikely villain was the first guy to find out he had made the Top 24.
By far the hardest goodbye was when they cut Chris Medina, who perhaps made the biggest emotional splash this year when he introduced his accident-disabled fiancée to the judges when he first auditioned.
"It was honestly a pleasure to meet you, someone like you, that was a blessing for me," Jennifer Lopez said, ultimately dissolving into tears when Chris stoically walked away.
"I just feel like I didn't tell him in the right way," she cried, as Randy and Steven Tyler consoled her. "I felt so bad. I don't want to do this anymore...I can't."
Meanwhile, here are the five who have made the cut so far:
• Naima Adedapo
• Clint Jun Gamboa
• Haley Reinhart
• Paul McDonald
• Ashthon Jones
The rest of the Top 24 will be revealed tomorrow.