Michael Becker / FOX
by Tierney Bricker | Wed., Mar. 21, 2012 9:00 PM
Michael Becker / FOX
Heejun Han gave us the heads-up that he was planning to do something "crazy" tonight on American Idol and he didn't disappoint! Plus, he wasn't the only contestant to pull a surprise on the audience!
In addition to Heejun's risky performance, which included pretending to need a do-over before ripping off his tux jacket, Erika Van Pelt debuted a drastic new 'do during the show: Goodbye, blond locks! Hello, black pixie cut!
So what did Heejun and Erika have to say about their scene-stealing moments tonight when we caught up with them after the show? And what did their fellow contestants think of their choices? Plus, what did Phillip Phillips really think of Diddy's comments?
"I love it!" Erika tells us of her big hair change, which she has been hoping to do for awhile, but decided to do after her styling session with Tommy Hilfiger.
"I knew I wanted to do something to my hair. Ever since the beginning of the competition, my hair has been in the 'it's still growing out' stage. I had it short for like six years, and over the past three years I've let it grow out. The color I wasn't really doing anything exciting with," she explains. "Tommy Hilfiger suggested I cut my hair, I said, here's my opportunity. It was not his idea to go dark, that was mine, but I figured if I do it, I'm going to go all out. We cut it, we dyed it and here it is. It's gone and it's black!"
Another factor in the decision to change up her 'do? "Obviously, Elise [Testone] and Hollie [Cavanaugh] are blonde, and I feel like, even early in the competition, I was drowning in a sea of blondes. And I'm a natural blonde, so it discouraged me a little," she admits.
So what did her fellow contestants think of her drastic new look? "Erika is a hot tamale," Joshua Ledet gushes. "I told her she is so gorgeous and beautiful, I would literally pour her in a glass and drink her." Skylar Laine adds, "The first thing I said when I saw her was 'Oh crap! I love the hair!' It's amazing!" Elise seconds "I love it!" and rocker Colton Dixon says, "Erika looks so freakin' good. She walked in and I was like, 'Ah! I've got a rocker girl now!' It was so awesome."
As for Heejun's reaction, he tells us, "When she walked in, she looked just like my mom, because she has the same cut as my mom. I was like ‘Mom, what are you doing here?' But I looked at her carefully, and it was Erika."
"Today's performance was literally a metaphor. When I was ripping off the clothes, it was saying this is who I really am," Heejun tells us. "The past three [weeks] I've been trying to impress so many people in such a short time that it came out of the performance. But today my focus was just to have fun onstage and show who I really am."
So were Heejun's fellow contestants shocked by his risky performance? "I was not shocked. That boy is always doing something crazy and making us laugh," Joshua says. "I was very proud of him because he just got on that stage and he just rocked it out. He had a good time. Coming from last week, the negative feedback he got, and the joy on his face was so amazing."
Heejun's BFF and roommate Phillip also enjoyed the performance, telling us, "I thought Heejun did awesome. He's been so serious these past few weeks. A couple of notes were off, but he was having fun. Especially at the end when he was singing he hit some awesome notes. He actually had fun and it was good to see that."
Phillip had a bit of trouble in his mentoring session with Jimmy Iovine and Diddy when the rapper told him he was using his guitar as a crutch. Any fan of the show knows, Phillip performed last week without his guitar. "Right when he told me that, I knew he didn't watch last week," Phillip says. "After that, I was just respectfully letting him say what he wanted, but I already knew what I wanted to do. I already knew what I wanted out of the song. I just respected both of them. They're there for suggestions, take 'em or leave 'em, and I left 'em."
Phillip also had some difficulty in his mentoring session with Hilfiger when the designer told him not to wear gray, a color he wears often on the show. "I knew that he hadn't watched the show either," Phillip tells us. "It was a pretty crazy week, but you gotta respect people, too." In the end, Phillip stuck with what he felt comfortable with and says no one from the show's production questioned his decisions. "If I don't feel comfortable with it, I'm not doing it."
Colton also had some trouble in his session with Hilfiger, but it wasn't about his clothes; it had to do with his signature hair. While Colton seemed annoyed by Hilfiger's comment on the show, he tells us, "It was a great meeting, it really was. I knew kind of who I was to begin with and he reiterated that a little bit. I wish we had more warning because I wouldn't have worn that hat and we could have avoided that whole comment, but it was good. It was a good meeting." Still, Colton is planning on changing his hair next week, telling us, "It'll be different!"
Of course, Heejun had something to say about Hilfiger, telling us, "I had no idea who Tommy Hilfiger is! Guess what I was wearing the whole time? [flashes boxers] I had no idea who that was but look at what I was wearing! I had this underwear for like 20 years and I never knew who the heck Tommy Hilfiger was!"
Do you like Erika's new look? Did you enjoy Heejun's performance? Sound off in the comments!