David Cook, David Archuleta, American Idol

Frank Micelotta / FOX

Don't miss one song—or one note of British sarcasm—with our performance-show liveblog:

It seems like only yesterday we were bidding goodbye to Colton Berry and Alexandréa Lushington...Wait, who?

Tonight, it's all about tomorrow as David Archuleta and David Cook proffer up their hearts and souls one more time for the chance to be crowned the newest American Idol. Each will be performing three songs, including one of those Idol-specific singles chosen by the producers that are seemingly tailor-made for sweeties like Jordin Sparks and, cough, David A., and Billboard poison for devil-may-care types like David C.

But Sony BMG honcho Clive Davis has chosen one of the songs, as well, and each contestant gets a pick, so there's still a long way to go before David C. has to sing about his destiny, a moment like this, or some other cornball sentiment.

8:01 p.m.: And they're starting off with a boxing theme and the "Let's get ready to rumble" guy, who introduces each satin robe-clad contestant. It's metaphors gone mad!

We spy Luke Perry in the audience with his kids.

8:02 p.m.: Here comes Ryan Seacrest, obviously bummed he didn't just get to say "This... is American Idol." Now the finalists are being referred to as Big David and Little David (which must be so nice for Little David) and phone lines will be open for four hours after tonight's broadcast.

8:06 p.m.: David A. won the prematch coin toss and has opted to perform second. Aw.

"It's like a dream come true," the 17-year-old says in that Michael Jackson-esque hush (obviously saving his voice for later) when asked how he's feeling tonight.

8:08 p.m.: "For me, I've got a tall order trying to keep up with this kid, so…just trying to find the right energy for each of these songs, and hopefully you guys will oblige," David C. offered up on his part.

And whether he means it or not, he also says to David A.: "This whole season has been amazing, from 24 to 2. You have been one of the most consistently nice people. As far as I'm concerned, competition's over and we're just having fun."

8:14 p.m.: David C. takes on the fantabulous U2 song "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For." Starts off slow and stripped-down and moves into rock-anthem territory.

8:16 p.m.: "A great way to start off this duel of 2007," Randy Jackson says, taking some of the what's-she-gonna-say heat off of Paula Abdul. "Phenomenal," Simon Cowell says.

8:18 p.m.: David A. tears into Elton John's "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me."

8:21 p.m.: Randy beyond loves it, calling it "one of the best performances of this whole season." Paula says "the sun will never go down on you," her second song tie-in of the night (she also told David C. the audience had found what it was looking for). And Simon gives Round 1 to the kid, calling his performance "arguably the best you've done so far."

8:28 p.m.: David C. gives a glimpse of what the this year's Idol songwriting competition has dug up—the rock-ready tune '"Dream Big" by Emily Shackelton, a surprisingly compatible tune for him. (It's still a little strange watching him sing this, but it's going down easier than it could have.)

8:30 p.m.: Nice work with a song we don't know, Paula says. "A bit of a lightweight, I thought," Simon decides. "It didn't feel like a winning moment for me...The good news is, we've got a third song."

8:37 p.m.: David A. has chosen the contest-winning ballad "In This Moment" by Ryan Gillmor.

It sounds, as expected, tailor-penned for "Little David's" musical proclivities.

8:40 p.m.: Randy (who doesn't love the song—which they never do!) makes yet another comment about ability to sing the phone book, and Paula observes that David A. is "on fire tonight."

Simon gives Round 2 to the teen, as well, and David A. looks like he's going to cry and/or pass out (but in a good way!) for the umpteenth time tonight.

8:46 p.m.: Ol' Clive can see the radio royalties coming in already. David C. has chosen Collective Soul's "The World I Know" for his third song.

8:48 p.m.: Sure enough: "I think this is the kind of record you can definitely make," Randy says.

"You're standing in your truth and delivering unbelievable songs with integrity and originality," Paula says, making at least half of a point.

Simon, however, deems it the wrong song choice, opining that David C. should have gone with a reprise of "Billie Jean" or one of his other more memorable numbers.

8:54 p.m.: Just like David A., who is redoing "Imagine," the tune that set him apart from the pack in the early weeks of the season.

8:56 p.m.: "What this show is all about," Randy calls him. Paula, who has looked to be on the verge of tears the entire night, calls the performance "stunning." And Simon says we've witnessed "one of the great finals."

"You came out here tonight to win, and what we have witnessed is a knockout," the Brit, who told Jay Leno last night he was rooting for David C., tells David A.

So goes the boxing metaphor. (And here comes Ruben Studdard to sing the season's elimination theme, "Celebrate Me Home."

Alright, who gets your vote tonight? Who deserves to win? Who's going to win (because of talent or because the corporate machine says so)? What are the judges smoking? Go on, share!

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