The finale's nearly here and I hope we're not all turning into nervous wrecks! The big question is, as it has always been, is what is Adam going to do? I await with a combination of eager anticipation, excitement and anxiety. There will be three performances each, with rumours being that one of the songs is going to be the contestant's favourite from the season, one Simon Fuller's choice, and the other one the coronation song written by Kara.
What would I like Adam to do? I feel like I'm in a bit of a dilemma. There's no doubt I would consider myself a die-hard fan who would love to see him go all-out crazy OTT Glambert in his most extreme incarnation because I believe that to be closer to what he'd like to do. It would be mind-blowingly entertaining for him to let loose without inhibition, sending a enormous 'Fuck you!' to all his haters, subverting AI and turning TV talent shows on their head. To be so fearlessly audacious and be crowned with the win would be the biggest and sweetest reward possible for Adam, finally overcoming the battle to be accepted as his no-holds-barred, unadulterated and fabulous self. In my perfect scenario, he'd win by a landslide, and the world would undergo a creative revolution where everyone would open their minds, feel completely free to experiment with self-expression and be accepted and celebrated for all their quirks. In the real world however, because I don't have enough faith in America, I'm afraid it would mean Adam losing the competition because there'd be too many scared conservatives running back to the sanctimony of their pulpits to spout vitriol, condemning any perceived threat to the safe mundanity of their lives. Do I really want to see Adam in his full magnificence at the expense of his winning the competition? This is the balancing act that Adam has had to deal with all season and I'm going to have to side with him compromising just a little in order to win as there'll be plenty of time later to propel us out of this world. Although that doesn't prevent me from still holding out for some of this on the results show performances when the voting is over.
The thing about Adam is, because he gave us a teaser at the start of One last week, he also rather contradictorily has me ravenous for the complete opposite kind of slow song of that will really tear our hearts out, rip us to shreds and leave us as quivering bawling wrecks because I know he can do it, he can move the world to tears. The only problem might be that none of us will be able to recover sufficiently enough to vote afterwards. To be able to have both types of performance on the same night would be beyond awesome. Perhaps the reason why we didn't have such completely contrasting performances last week was intentional. Things are usually more intense after a period of deprivation and to make us ache for it could help to achieve the maximum impact in the finale.
For selfish reasons of wanting more new Adam performances to marvel at, I really hope we don't see a reprise but I do understand that three songs is a lot to sort out a few days, not to mention all the enormous pressure and freaking out before the big day. If I had to choose a song for him to reprise, I wouldn't choose Satisfaction because we've heard it twice already but there is potential for improvement in terms of the vocals. I wouldn't want him to reprise classic performances such as RoF, ToMT, WLL or MW because part of their appeal was in capturing the magic of the moment. I fear the surprise factor would be missing so that they wouldn't surpass the original. It's possible he could rearrange them, but any rearrangement of RoF would seem like he was retreating and bowing down to appease his critics. Which leaves BoW, PTFM, BTBW, IICHY, FG, One and Cryin'. Of those, I think IICHY, FG and One have the most potential for a 'moment' that were narrowly missed first time round. Both IICHY and One could help with being lengthened, and FG and One could be improved for the AI audience by sticking closer to the studio versions. I doubt One will be reprised, having been done so recently but Adam has the ability to make it sound completely different should he choose. BoW was done a long time ago so there's scope for improvement and to show how much he's grown since then. I doubt that reprising PTFM, BTBW or Cryin' would help Adam in the competition, considered to be his more 'screechy' tunes. I think it would work well if he chose any of the five songs he sang in the early rounds. Contestant's favourite is a term that's open to interpretation though, and could mean any song from the season. As it's a rumour, I'm still hoping for a new song.
The other songs are the coronation song and Simon Fuller's choice. I have no doubt that if Adam sings head-to-head against Kris with the same song, same arrangement, Adam will wipe the floor with him. Adam's voice is an additional instrument that can completely change a song, but it all comes down to a matter of taste. Some people will prefer Kris's arrangements and vocal imperfections, which although distinctive, on a night of three performances where he's weaker than Adam when it comes to varying it up, he'll sound quite samey. I'm guessing that Kara's song will be quite ballady although it depends on who she had in mind when she wrote it. I'm hoping for a pleasant surprise. Simon Fuller's choice will be quite revealing as to the producers' intentions but I'm hoping overall that the songs chosen will vary in tempo so that Adam can treat us with diverse and dynamic performances. I want to see one high-octane OTT performance with a dance routine where he goes crazy with his signature vocals, one emotionally rousing one and a bonus would be a really edgy left-field one that he'd bring into the mainstream (which, let's face it, won't happen).
Now is the time to leave these thoughts here, clear my expectations and go in with an open mind. I think my ability to do this has been improving as the weeks have gone by and I trust Adam's instincts in knowing what to do. I don't think the quality of performances are actually going to make a huge difference to the outcome of the competition because the casual voters won't be the ones voting frantically for a full four hours. I think it's going to be won based on the dedication of the fanbases and their ability to send group texts, so it's very important to do what we can. I want him to win for the way he has captured our imaginations and inspired us - we owe it to him. I need him to win for that elusive validation he seeks and I'd be so pissed off if he didn't. He is a superstar who is light years ahead of the competition and deserves to be recognised and rewarded for his talent and courage.
Tomorrow's reviews of the three performances may come out a bit later than usual and may be phased because I'll be exhausted after lack of sleep staying up to vote. I urge you to do the same so that we can all finish this journey celebrating together on the highest of highs. Please, GET VOTING!