Thursday, May 25, 2006

The Boloney Culture

What a beautiful Thursday afternoon to be outside the box! It's your old pal Buddy Boloney, back in the driver's seat after too long an absence. This is the perfect time to be sprung from that pine and leather prison, because last night was the pop culture equivalent of the Super Bowl, World Series, Olympics, Tonys, and Blockbuster Awards combined -- the American Idol finale! Good-man Boloney has to admit, this is one of the only things on God's Green that can bring a tear to the marble eye of this dummy. Maybe that's because I have no tear ducts! Hotcha-hotcha, I gotcha!

Whatta show, folks! It had everything, from bombast... to more bombast. It also had excess! Also, I distinctly spied some gibbosity, distension, intumescence, and a healthy dose of immoderacy. There were American Idols, past and present! Faded pop-stars from yesteryear, parading their embarrassingly time-worn voices out on the stage of the Kodak Theatre for millions to cringe over. I mean, is Meatloaf trying to become a self-fulfilling prophecy? What was that sound he was making with his throat? It was like he was trying to belt a Steinmanian opus from 1975 with his face, but his torso was separately pleading with the audience for a carne esada burrito from Taco Bell.

On and on the parade went: Elliott Yamin, my jug-eared meshugge bubbeleh sang behind-and-to-the-right of Mary J. Blige, who was apparently intent on destroying the little man with soundwaves. Eventual winner Taylor Hicks quote-unquote "shared" the stage with a Judy Garland-esque Toni Braxton, who sang awfully low and ground her hips into Hicks like she was trying to wriggle him on like a pair of Denim (a dummy pun about her son's name -- Google it). The twelve "Idol" finalists then came out for a tasteful medley of Bacharach songs, accompanying the man himself and his band on a bunch of standards until muse-arach Dionne Warwick emerged from the video scrim and warbled her own time-damaged version of "Walk On By."

One of the weirdest pairings was some kid named Sandecki, an audition washout, sharing the stage with Jeff Gannon-approved Clay Aiken. I don't know where Aiken has been hiding since "Measure of a Man" was released, but where ever it was, they stole Diana DeGarmo's bangs and grafted them to the diminutive redhead's scalp.

Get where I'm going with this, peeps? Picture your old pal Buddy laying on his side against a black background wearing a white suit and a jheri curl: "Cause this is Filler! Filler night! You're fighting for your life inside of killer, filler tonight!" (Buddy loves the production work of Quincy Jones... always has.)

Mayhap the only surprise of the night was the abrupt appearance of Prince on stage, here to prove that he still wiggles and combs his hair on stage with the best of them. Now that was a great thrill, to see him up there singing songs no one on Earth recognized. I was waiting for an appearance by Jesse... and now Jerome, but to no avail. (I realize that's more of a "Purple Rain" reference, but your old friend Buddy has been looking to score a Morris Day joke in here somewhere.)

By the time Hicks and Katharine McPhee (whom some uppity pinniped unfairly claimed was uncomfortable in front of large crowds) mounted the stage one last time, it was Anticlimax City, population: who's ever on your couch. Boy from Bama won in what was surely a rout over the overmatched Looker from La-La Land, and that is just OK with Buddy Boloney.

For the rest of the night, all was right in the world, until I heard that the French face-transplant lady was going to talk to Barbara Walters. If I wanted to see a horror show of that scale, I'd rent "Saw II!" I don't know which face is gonna look worse! Hotcha hotcha, I gotcha!