Friday, September 23, 2005

You can't always get what you want

Finally. The last RockStar:INXS. Now I can go back to obsessing about myself and my leg (brief update: October 4th is my surgery date, but that’s another blog entry in itself). Previously, INXS interviewed the ‘rockers,’ the contestants sang, and Suzie was given a booting.

In a completely not contrived way, the three guys toast to their being the final three. They also miss Suzie’s ‘femaleness.’ J!D! notes that Tim Farriss said that INXS would be ‘complete’ next week. Everyone is now a threat to each other. Dave ‘Count Chocula’ Navarro happens to stop by to let them know what’s going on. Tomorrow they get their new (product placement) cars and are taking themselves to a showroom to meet Andrew Farriss and collaborating on a new INXS song. Yow. J!D! calls Andrew a ‘genius’ and hopes to be writing songs with INXS for the next twenty years. Lucky them. Overused words during this conversation are ‘awesome’ and ‘dude.’

Marty writes in a notebook getting prepared for tomorrow. J!D! does not. He says rock and roll shouldn’t be too over thought and ‘rock and roll lives in the holes, man.’ Mig thinks it would be foolish not to be prepared for meeting Andrew Farriss. The next day they drive their new cars over to the studio. Marty comes in first and immediately tells Andrew that he has some ideas. Marty sings along to the playback something about ‘pieces.’ As long as it’s not about trees, I’m happy. Andrew tells us that Marty’s chorus was ‘virtually correct in every sense I could think of.’ Meaning…? The two of them go back and forth about whether or not a certain part of the song is even necessary. Marty folds pretty quickly, wanting to show he can get along and not be controlling. Andrew says he was ‘stunned’ at the lyric that Marty put together. Marty leaves happy.

Mig is up next. Sadly he has given in to his sappy tendencies and slowed down the song. Andrew notes that Mig really put some ‘energy’ into the lyric. Andrew asks Mig about changing the last part and he falls silent. Andrew notes that Mig is still too much of a sweetie-pie and he’s not sure that’s what INXS need. Andrew suggests another ending and Mig quickly agrees to it, saying to us that Andrew has an impressive track record so if he suggests something, he should go along with it. Mig sings an unfortunate lyric about ‘eagles wings’ and being ‘up for anything.’ Someone owns a rhyming dictionary! Mig fears he couldn’t live up to Andrew’s expectations, but Andrew claims to not have any expectations. Once again he tells us that Mig is a little into the happy things and life isn’t always about that.

J!D!’s turn. He comes in saying that he was thinking of a ‘love and war sort of thing’ and throws around the word ‘motif’ as if he knows what it means. Andrew plays guitar, J!D! sings about nothing in particular. Andrew then asks him if he has more lyric ideas, but J!D! does not. Andrew says to us that when he saw what J!D! had down lyrically he thought ‘…okay.’ They finish a line using the word ‘wrong’ and try to use ‘strong’ to rhyme, finally settling on ‘moving on.’ Andrew says that J!D! thinks ‘outside the square’ and ‘thinks very quickly,’ both of which are good. J!D! thinks he made a good impression saying ‘writer, writer, spark.’ Andrew thinks J!D! has a lot of passion but perhaps he needs some of Marty’s discipline by actually writing things down.

Back to the Rock Haüs. Dinner is laid out and it looks like veggie wraps yet again with plenty of red wine. Mig calls it the Last Supper (with J!D! as Judas) and asks the other two what they’ll miss the most about the mansion. J!D! says ‘the chicks.’ Marty says ‘the beautiful women.’ Goofus, meet Gallant. J!D! likens that night to having six lottery numbers and the last ball is still rolling and you’re like (gaping).

Next morning the three go into the song picking room and there is one red envelope. The note inside tells them to pick any song performed on the whole season to showcase the fact that they are the one for INXS. Next to them is a large stack of sheet music that J!D! picks up and promptly slides all over the floor. They get on the floor and Mig suggests that if they want a song to pick it out of the pile. J!D! wants ‘Come As You Are.’ ‘Pretty Vegas’ comes up and Marty snatches it aside. ‘Bring It On Home To Me,’ ‘Dream On,’ ‘California Dreaming?’ No takers. J!D! gives ‘Wish You Were Here’ to Marty. ‘Imagine’ and ‘Suffragette City’ go by. J!D! puts aside ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ for himself. ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ comes up and Mig picks it up and bites the sheet music. J!D! passive/aggressively asks the others if they mind if he does ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ because it means a lot to him and his friends back home will know what that means. J!D! adds that in his will (!) they are to play that song, that and ‘Sympathy For The Devil.’ Once a tool, always a tool. He finishes by saying he doesn’t want to digress, he’s there to progress with INXS. Hey, someone else has a rhyming dictionary! What are the odds?

Marty plans to do ‘Wish You Were Here,’ saying that it gave him a new voice and shows off how much he’s learned. Mig says there is only one song he wants to sing that badly and J!D! guesses correctly that it’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody.’ Mig thinks that choosing that song will now not work against him because he’s shown he’s ready to move on (from his ‘We Will Rock You’ past). Marty smartly notes that Mig is ‘walking on thin ice’ by choosing this song because why sing a Queen song if you want to prove you’re not in a Queen musical anymore. He calls it a ‘shaky decision.’ Of course, instead of telling Mig this, he tells him to go for it. Over J!D! playing ‘You Can’t Always etc etc.’ the three contestants pack their suitcases to leave the mansion. Mig carefully packs his Aussie flag and military jacket. Marty simply dumps a drawer into his suitcase. J!D! and Mig pack their guitars and everyone is out the door, filing past the pool. Mig calls this the most exciting experience of his professional career. J!D! claims to now be a better artist and human being because of this experience. Marty says this is where they all have to go on stage ‘guns a-blazing’ and if they lack any confidence they will fail. So long Rock Haüs, we’ll always remember the wine and vegetables.

During the credits, we see that at some point last night, the three guys (no doubt started off by J!D! ) throw all the wicker outdoor furniture into the pool. I bet they leave their beds unmade and their wet towels on the floor, too. Crazy!

Tuesday night and aren’t I glad? Brooke is at her least slutty tonight because it’s such an important occasion. All three ‘rockers’ and INXS are decked out in black as well. It’s like a wake for rock music. All the losers then parade on stage and are given a big drunken hand from the audience. Ty and Suzie get the loudest responses. Hello, INXS. Hello, Dave. Recap of the whole season so far. Rockers competed, blah blah, much jumping around, fist pumping, falling down, cooter grabbing, slutty dancing, pointing, and falling into the audience ensued. Tim hated sending everyone home. J!D! was a SuperTool from the very beginning, Marty was out of control, flailing and screaming until he found his voice, Mig was so popular that he remained out of the bottom three until the last week. More footage of jumping and shirtlessness. Whoo.

Brooke claims that Dave ‘guided’ the rockers until this point, meaning taught cross-dressing techniques and gave out waxing tips. Any thoughts from Dave? Tonight is all about awesome awesomeness. Who thinks they’re going to win? Everyone’s hand goes up. Dave asks J!D! if he thought of driving his new car into the pool. He says he did, but where is he going to live if this doesn’t work out? Marty, what it was like leaving the mansion? They’re all better performers now and they’re all ready to move on. Not really an answer…Mig gets no question, almost like he’s out of the running already. But what do INXS think? Kirk says they have been recording their new album all summer and at the end of the night they’ll know who gets to record with them and front them on a world tour.

Mig is up first. He has on a new Wig. Flashback on Mig’s journey, leaving behind ‘We Will Rock You’ for a chance to sing with INXS. In the first week, he sucked singing ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit,’ but bounced back in subsequent weeks. He really wanted ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ the first time it came up and now he’s getting to do it for INXS to show how far he’s come…from starring in a Queen musical?? Logic is not Mig’s strong suit. So off we go, singing singing singing. He sounds fine, like he’s sung this many times before. I think I liked Suzie’s version better, she was having more fun with it and sang better. Garry (Garry) looks like he’s trying not to laugh. In the audience, Suzie is singing along. All we’re missing is some Fosse moves and some jazz hands.

J!D!’s turn. Brooke calls him ‘the most (long pause) outspoken rocker of them all.’ So he’s an asshole, noted. Horrible footage of him singing ‘American Woman’ from the first week (much crotch grabbing is involved) then footage of him flailing around to ‘California Dreaming.’ To my eye, there’s no difference in his performance (less crotch grabbing maybe), but INXS start liking him from this point on. However, the house band clearly hates his guts and I’m with them. His hair is waxed beyond belief tonight. He sings ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want,’ trying to look ‘soulful’ but his face says ‘passing kidney stones.’ As usual, he overdoes the performance (stomping, squatting, pointing) trying to cover up his lack of singing talent. He finishes the song halfway into the audience, allowing some lucky skanks a chance to touch his waxed head. Mig claps for him, Marty doesn’t.

Marty is on now. He’s described as the former ‘mad conductor.’ Wow, they aren’t kidding. Marty himself describes his first performance on stage as ‘plugging my finger in an electric socket.’ I want to put a wallet under his tongue. Eventually he learned from INXS’s critiques to stand still and just sing. Tonight he’s singing ‘Wish You Were Here’ again. As usual, his eyeliner is impeccable. It’s a great song and he sings it well, but as a showcase for the scope of one’s voice and performance skills, it’s not so good. Again, Garry (Garry) tries not to cry. Both Mig and J!D! clap at the end of his performance.

Deliberation time! Who has just performed on this stage for the last time? Who has performed their final point, final stomp, and final flying knee-drop? As always, it’s up to Tim Farriss to deliver the bad news. He first thanks them all for their time, effort, and talent and says it’s been an incredible journey. But it’s time for the sad piano of rejection, which means someone is getting a booting. Mig, we’re so sorry but you’re too Broadway to be the lead singer of INXS. Back to ‘We Will Rock You.’ Dave tells him that it’s been a joy to see him perform and that he’s an incredibly nice human being. So he has absolutely no future in the music business then. Mig says he’s jealous of the remaining two and whoever they pick is going to put on the best show on earth. He thanks everyone who voted for him in Australia and the Philippines (?) and here also. He then heads over to hug the other castmates. What, he doesn’t get to meet INXS and say a proper goodbye?

Tim says that it’s been too long and that now the contestants are going to get to sing an INXS song with INXS themselves. They file onstage and Brooke throws us to a commercial. So where does Dave Navarro go, is he stuck back there on the banquets by himself? Aw. Back from commercials, we get a laser show with our INXS performance. They start playing ‘Don’t Change.’ The lights go on and it’s Marty singing. Unfortunately he’s singing with a fake English accent and sounds like he’s trying to imitate Michael Hutchence, instead of singing in his own way. He also keeps to himself and doesn’t go near the other guys in the band. He is able to hit the tricky last notes well, so it comes off fine, if stiff.

J!D! is up now singing ‘What You Need.’ He moves around a lot, as usual and has more of an interaction with the band. He sounds good, for him. Oddly, in the middle of his performance, he runs to the side of the stage and quickly drinks some water. Notes a little hard to hit, perhaps? Not a bad performance for J!D!, the tool. Deliberations. Marty and J!D! pretend to like and respect one another. Any last thoughts, Dave, you he-whore? Thanks to everyone, it’s been the best summer of his life. Tim? He says that it’s been a very long time for INXS to go without a singer and however much it means to the contestants, it means much more to them because now they are a complete band again. Both were wonderful to play with onstage. Compliments for J!D!, compliments for Marty. Tim then says ‘J!D!’ and fakes mental anguish, hanging his head. Then he whips his head up, tears off his shades and says that he is right for their band INXS. He immediately falls on the floor into fetal position, then gets up and has tears in his dead, black eyes. The band all salutes him and do a shot of something alcoholic. Tim thanks Marty and wants to talk to him about opening for them on their world tour. If you ask me, that sounds like a better offer than to be the guy replacing what’s-his-name. Dave tells Marty that if he ever needs a guitar player, he’s on board. Final thoughts, Marty? He congratulates J!D! and says he deserves it, and that he thanks INXS for the time they’ve put into making him a better performer and person. He also does not get to say a personal goodbye to INXS.

INXS now play their new song ‘Easy Easy’ with lead tool J!D! Fortune! It sounds like it was written by putting all the INXS songs into a computer and this is the generic outcome. J!D! also begins squatting his cold dead heart out. The band may want to have a word with him about this. Brooke tells us as the band plays on that if you think you’ve got what it takes, if you have passive/aggressive tendencies, if you have no social skills, if you’re a backstabbing whiner, if you don’t believe in preparation or practice, if your last known address was your car, if you have a thing for red wine and vegetables, this could be you next year. So apparently they plan on doing this show again with another band, or the same band if INXS get sick of J!D! ‘s bullshit and beat him to death one night in his sleep. As for me, I have learned absolutely nothing and am disappointed that evil has prevailed. Ah well.

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