Even though we thought her lackluster stage presence could potentially be a problem in the future, we didn't think Pia Toscano would be cut loose from the American Idol stage this early in the competition.
Her elimination comes as a complete and total shock to Idol fans everywhere, as many predicted the talented singer would make it all the way to the May 25 finale.
The judges and Pia's fellow contestants were dumbstruck, but what you saw on television doesn't compare to what we saw from our seat behind the judges table after the cameras stopped rolling...
Being one of the strongest singers in the competition, no one understood why Pia was in the bottom three to begin with. After taking a seat next to Stefano Langone, Pia's carefree and confident demeanor faded and she began listening to Stefano as he gave her a pep talk.
Following Iggy Pop's awkward performance and another commercial break, Jacob Lusk, Pia and Stefano took center stage. With 10 seconds to spare before going back on the air, Pia crossed her heart and said a little prayer. Unfortunately, her prayer wasn't enough to save her as Ryan Seacrest announced her time in the Idol spotlight was over.
As her montage of Idol memories played, Pia was unable to hold back the tears. Ryan gave her a hug as she pulled herself together and prepared to sing her swan song, "I'll Stand By You."
When the show ended, no one in the studio audience moved. In past eliminations, it's been an easy transition off the stage, but this elimination was as shocking as the premature exits of past Idol contestants Tamyra Gray, Chris Daughtry and Jennifer Hudson.
The finalists surrounded Pia as she buried her head in Jacob's chest and was approached by judges Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler. Haley Reinhardt wiped away tears and prompted the audience to cheer for Pia. Stefano, who has managed to stay in the competition after consistently landing in the bottom three week after week, looked downright destroyed and guilty that he secured a spot on the couch over Pia. While Paul McDonald and James Durbin consoled him, it made us wonder when Stefano's luck is going to run out.
The audience, stunned and upset over her elimination, began chanting Pia's name and yelling out supportive words like: "You rock, Pia!" and "I'll buy your record!"
Even Randy needed extra hugs from the contestants. The audience watched as the judges spent an unusually long time consoling Pia, and none of the other Idol hopefuls moved from her side. Finally, the audience was prompted to give Pia another monstrous round of applause before the show's stars began to retreat backstage. Pia was so beside herself over the elimination, she was basically carried offstage by two people from production, whom she was leaning heavily on for support.
With Haley and Lauren Alaina being the only girls left in the competition, we're wondering if it's only a matter of time before they are following in Pia's footsteps.
Are you stoked or shocked at Pia's elimination? Do you think Haley and Lauren are in danger of elimination? If you had been voting for Pia, who will you give your votes to now? Let us know in the comments!