Mandisa Hundley becomes the fourth ‘American Idol 5’ finalist eliminated
American Idol voted out the fourth of its fifth season finalists during last night’s live results show, with Mandisa Hundley, a 29-year-old from Antioch, TN, being eliminated from the Fox reality talent competition as a result of receiving the fewest home viewer votes.
Mandisa had entertained the show’s audience by singing Shania Twain’s "Any Man of Mine" during Tuesday’s country music-themed performance show. Although he called the song choice "horrible," Idol judge Simon Cowell had also acknowledged Mandisa’s performance was "fun" and "cutesy." Randy Jackson had also offered mixed comments about the performance. "The beginning of it wasn’t hot for me, but at least in the end you got it together — the last five seconds were great," the Idol judge had remarked on Tuesday.
Joining Mandisa in the week’s bottom three vote-getters were two other finalists who, like Mandisa, had never previously been part of the show’s bottom three: Elliott Yamin and Paris Bennett.
Elliott, a 27-year-old from Richmond, VA, had performed Garth Brooks’ "If Tomorrow Never Comes" during Tuesday night’s show. As is typical for her, Idol judge Paula Abdul had gushed over the performance. Meanwhile Simon had described Elliott’s choice as "safe." "You’re going to have to do better than that," Simon had remarked after the Tuesday performance.
Paris, a 17-year-old from Fayettesville, GA, had sung "How Do I Live" — a performance that resulted some unusual role reversal from the judges. The usually positive Paula panned the performance, stating that she didn’t feel Paris "connected with the song." Meanwhile Simon, usually the most critical judge, was unexpectedly positive about the performance. "I disagree with Paula, I thought it was very good," Simon told Paris. "I thought it was an excellent choice of songs, it reminded me of early Dionne Warwick."
After keeping all three contestants in suspense through a commercial break, American Idol host Ryan Seacrest revealed that Paris had finished as the week’s third lowest vote-getter, leaving Mandisa and Elliott to face elimination alone.
Mandisa took her elimination well. "I want to thank my fans so much, your support has meant the world to me… I thank you and I bless you in the name of Jesus," the 29-year-old told viewers after her fate was revealed.
According to Ryan, home viewers had cast nearly 35 million votes for American Idol 5’s nine remaining contestants.
Next week will see another of Idol’s finalists eliminated, with the eight remaining contestants once again taking to the stage during Tuesday’s 8PM ET/PT performance show and later learning their fate during Wednesday’s 9:00-9:30PM ET/PT live results show.