'American Idol' sends Kristy Lee Cook home, reveals Top 6 finalists
By Christopher Rocchio, 04/17/2008
Kristy Lee Cook was revealed to be the sixth finalist eliminated from American Idol's seventh season during last night's live results show broadcast on Fox.
The 24-year-old from Selma, OR was ousted from Idol's seventh season after host Ryan Seacrest said "almost 36 million" home viewer votes -- a "season high" -- were cast immediately following Tuesday night's live performance broadcast that saw the Top 7 finalists sing Mariah Carey songs.
"Thank you America for voting for me," said Cook after her elimination was revealed last night. "This is a huge dream and it never would have came true if it wasn't for all the fans."
Cook sang "Forever" during Tuesday night's performance episode. Idol judge Randy Jackson had said he "didn't think that was amazing" and added "there were a couple of pitchy notes in the first part" before commenting she "definitely started stepping up towards the end."
Fellow judge Paula Abdul said she was "blown away," enjoyed the arrangement and thought Cook would "have a hit with it in the country-western world." Not surprisingly, Simon Cowell disagreed.
"Well you probably weren't jumping for joy when you heard it was Mariah Carey week," Cowell told Cook during Tuesday night's broadcast.
"I was just happy I gave her chills," answered Cook, referring to Carey's comments about getting goosebumps.
"Okay, well you didn't give me chills," replied Cowell. "I think you managed with what you could. It was a little bit whiny at times. It wasn't ever going to be an advantage for you. So I think you were quite smart. It just wasn't great."
Kristy Lee Cook waves goodbye after being eliminated on Wednesday night's American Idol results show (Photo credit Frank Micelotta/FOX)
Prior to Cook's elimination last night, Syesha Mercado, a 21-year-old from Sarasota, FL who currently resides in Miami, FL, and Brooke White, a 24-year-old from Mesa, AZ who currently resides in Van Nuys, CA, were revealed to be the other members of this week's bottom three vote-getters.
"It's tough. It's tough every week now," Jackson said when White and Cook were revealed to be the last two finalists in danger of elimination. "I don't know man. I can't call this one dude."
"No surprises," added Cowell. "Maybe Kristy, you know, your time's up this time sweetheart."
Seacrest then revealed that -- after being among the bottom three four out of her six weeks in the Top 12 -- Cook had been eliminated from this competition.
Earlier in the broadcast, Carly Smithson had openly expressed her displeasure with the way Cowell had been criticizing her.
"I think you've been a bit hard on me. I really do," Smithson told Cowell before Seacrest revealed she'd survived this week's elimination. "I think Paula's been lovely and Randy's been lovely."
"Are you talking about me?" asked Cowell.
"Oh yeah," replied Smithson.
"Carly, you know why I am [hard on you]? Because I think you're potentially great," he answered. "I just want to give you that extra push sometimes."
In addition to this week's elimination, the results broadcast also featured Carey performing "Bye Bye," a single from "E=MC2," her latest album, and former Idol fifth-season finalist Elliott Yamin singing "Free," a track from his March 2007 self-titled debut album. Yamin's mother Claudette passed away last month and he had "We Miss You Mom" written on the palm of his hand during the performance.
"This is the first time I've actually taken the stage without her out in the audience," said Yamin. "But I know she's watching."
Idol's Top 6 seventh-season finalists -- David Archuleta, Jason Castro, David Cook, Mercado, Smithson, and White -- will all take the stage and perform during next week's live one-hour performance episode broadcast beginning Tuesday at 8PM ET/PT. Andrew Lloyd Webber will serve as the musical mentor.
On Wednesday beginning at 9PM ET/PT, another finalist will be eliminated from the competition based on home viewer votes, revealing the season's Top 5 finalists.