Welcome to WeeklyWilson.com, where author/film critic Connie (Corcoran) Wilson avoids totally losing her marbles in semi-retirement by writing about film (see the Chicago Film Festival reviews and SXSW), politics and books----her own books and those of other people. You'll also find her diverging frequently to share humorous (or not-so-humorous) anecdotes and concerns. Try it! You'll like it!

Tag: Jennifer Lopez

Blog Dark for Five Days: Apologies to All

“Weekly Wilson” has been dark for 5 days, as you may have noticed if you are a regular reader.

My computer assistant, Allison, spent THREE HOURS on the phone with them, beginning on or about the 6th or 7th and they claimed to have “fixed” the problem. They told her it “might take a few days” to resolve, but it would be back up.

They lied.

This happened before, and I used Jennifer Lopez to draw eyes to the blog on December 1, 2021, when it went offline for a matter of days, and I looked further back and determined that it also happened in September, 2021, so, every 3 to 4 months, GoDaddy lets my blog go dark and then one or both of us have to spend hours on the phone trying to get it back “up.” I pointed out that MANY people work from home via computer these days, and that going “dark” for a week 3 times in one year is a lot, IMHO.

If any of you truly “tekky” people out there want to suggest other services that might have been able to get the blog up in, oh, say, a day, rather than five to seven days, I’d be interested in hearing the names of such services, since I am a person who was using a land line to call them and refuses to text on a cell phone.

I had been posting almost daily, as you may also have noticed, and I had a very good piece prepared about the Uvelde shootings. Perhaps I will run it tomorrow, as it is now after 1 a.m. and, as I told the technician I finally got (Jennifer, who succeeded someone with an unpronouncable Indian name) “I need this s*** like I need another hole in my head.” This is the truth.

Me, Craig and best friend Pam in “the good old days” on campus in Iowa City.

So, am having so many bad side effectswithout further ado and with apologies, I offer up (again) Jennifer Lopez in her jungle dress, which has absolutely nothing to do with this topic, but might draw your eyes to the blog. I spent an extra long time today being radiated (we jumped immediately to “the boost” because I am having so many bad side effects ) and then I went to the Toyota dealership and got red paint for a dent someone put in my brand new Prius. I had no red paint for the 20th Anniversary Prius, but John at the Toyota dealership ordered me some and then he actually came out and put it on the dent. (Thanks, John!)

Now THAT’s what I call “customer service.”

If I sound frustrated, fed up and less than patient, you have hit all three nails on the head, and I’ll move on tomorrow to post my piece on Uvalde (which is really highlights from around the world on what OTHER countries have had to say about gun violence in America) and to comment on last night’s first airing of the January 6 Commission hearings, which was riveting, historic television.

I never thought I would ever have very positive things to say about someone whose surname is “Cheney” but I have to admit that Liz has done her nation proud, and it is just too bad that the rest of the GOP are people like that Hawley dude from Missouri and Ted Cruz.

Judges on “American Idol” Use One-Per-Season “Save” for Sam Woolf

HarryConnickJrOn ‘American Idol’ results night on Thursday, April 3, 2014, Judges Jennifer Lopez, Harry Connick, Jr., and Keith Urban used the one save they have per season to save Bradenton, Florida native Sam Woolf.
Confetti descended from the ceiling and his teammates hoisted him on their shoulders. For a minute, I thought I was watching a Jewish wedding.

Those in jeopardy of being eliminated, besides Sam, were Malaya Watson and C.J. Harris. It is nearly unbelievable that Malaya—who gave arguably one of the top two performances of the night—was rated so poorly by the audience in television land, but C.J. Harris should have been gone the second or third night that he sang sharp—(which was many shows ago).

As the evening opened, Jennifer Lopez came out wearing a hot pink outfit that was so short I hoped it was a skort and not a skirt. It was so noteworthy that Ryan Seacrest even commented. It was that kind of night.

Keith Urban
looked as though his stylist had worked overtime on his hair, to give it that casual look (lots of product, I’m thinking) and Harry Connick, Jr., wore a suit and tie to give the panel the air of gravitas and hold down his role as the Grand Old Man of judging. (He is also arguably the most knowledgeable musician sitting at the judges’ panel and a welcome addition after last year’s Nicki Minaj/Mariah Carey year).

There was an odd segment where Randy Jackson was pictured sitting so close to Ryan Seacrest on a blue couch that you wondered why “the Dawg” didn’t move over to the right and give poor Ryan a seat. On the other hand, Randy has been almost non-existent this season, and it has been the best season for judges ever, if not for contestants.

The very first contestant announced as safe (Dexter) was wearing a baseball cap backwards. I read a remark recently that went something like this: “Dude, unless you’re directing a major motion picture, lose the baseball cap.”

Others declared safe, in order, were Jena, Caleb, Jessica and Alex. Then the lowest three (Sam, Malaya and C.J.) suffered through the final moments before Sam—who reminds of a young Ricky Nelson—sang for his life and was given the save for this season. When the judges announced they were going to use the save on Sam, confetti fell from the ceiling. (I wondered if this confetti is rigged each and every week, for whatever contestant might have the save used to keep him in the competition, or if the judges were told the results in advance).

The other notable appearance of the night was former contestant Chris Daughtry. Ryan Seacrest reminisced about the look on Chris Daughtry’s face when he was cut from “American Idol.” I remember it well: a look of complete astonishment and dismay. I guess the final joke is on “American Idol” when non-winners like Jennifer >Hudson and Chris Daughtry go on to greater stardom, while winners like Ruben Stoddard and Chris Allen (who beat Adam Lambert!) are barely heard from again.

Majesty Rose Eliminated from “American Idol” on March 27, 2014

Majesty RoseThe seemingly inevitable happened on March 27, 2014 “American Idol” elimination night. The talented Majesty Rose was eliminated. Meanwhile, the always-sharp (as in off-key) C.J. Harris sailed on into further competition, despite his inability to sing on-key.

Majesty Rose ended up in the bottom three with Sam Woolf (as I predicted in a piece posted earlier in the day). She then had to sing for the “save” and it was a song about how happy she was. Not good. The judges chose not to save the talented-but-always-in-the-bottom-three Majesty Rose.

As the program began, the first 2 to be told they were “safe” were Jena Irene and Malaya Watson—which was predictable, based on their Thursday performances.

Then a break occurred so that Janelle Monae could sing her new song “What Is Love?” from the Rio soundtrack. A brief plug for the new sit-com “Saving Jack” with Christopher Meloni and Rachael Harris occurred, as they were seated in the audience. The new comedy follows “American Idol.”

The next performers told they were “safe” were Alex Preston, Jessica Meuse, Caleb Johnson and Dexter Roberts. That left only 3 performers onstage: Majesty Rose, C.J. Harris and Sam Woolf. This was roughly what I predicted would occur earlier in the day.

At this point, Ryan Seacrest asked for some remarks from Jennifer Lopez but Harry Connick, Jr. answered, “I think America is really smart this season. It’s all about what you did the night before.”

Following those words of wisdom, Majesty Rose had the unenviable task of singing a song about happiness while no doubt, feeling very sad. It was nice to see Malaya Watson give Majesty a big hug as the program ended. I also enjoyed the brief portion of the program when they returned from commercial and Ryan Seacrest’s sound was turned off.
There were no purple gummy bears or shoe thefts, as occurred on Wednesday night’s program, as the mood was considerably more somber. The field is now down to eight, and the cream is rising to the top. If you wonder which performers seem to be on the rise, which are falling, and which are simply marching in place, read my earlier post.
And then there’s C.J. Harris, who just keeps on keeping on, no matter how off-key he may be.

M.K. Nobilette Eliminated on March 20th “American Idol;” Returns to San Francisco

The judges have spoken and M.K. Nobilette has been sent back to San Francisco, a town she loves, where a loyal female fan base kept her in the competition until March 20th, 2014. Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick, Jr., did not see fit to use their “save” for the baseball-cap wearing Bieber lookalike.

The bottom three this night, (besides M.K.) were Dexter Roberts of Fayette, Alabama, and Sam Woolf of Bradenton, Florida. I’m having trouble coming up with the reasons why the good-looking young Woolf keeps ending up in the bottom three, but perhaps his timid, non-assertiveness is the answer, since Caleb Johnson—a far less attractive youth, but a very confident and talented one—seems to be a big crowd favorite. Yes, this is a singing competition, but, in some ways, it mirrors the “Q” factor ratings that network talking heads are given for how “likeable” the audiences find them. It was a low “Q” rating that doomed Cheryl Tieg’s attempts to become one of those talking heads years ago.

The night featured Jennifer Lopez dancing in a skimpy outfit, backed up by girls half her age, singing “ILuhYaPapi.” She resurrected her “Jenny from the block” image and the song, (which was mainly a choreographed dance number), drew heavily on her Hispanic heritage. On a Yahoo “answer” blog, someone searching for the title of the song was answered by “Noneofurbusiness” with the title (I Luh Ya Papi) and the remark, “Worst song ever and the title puts us Latinos to shame, like we can’t speak English.”

I’m not sure I’d go so far as to say “worst song ever,” but I do wonder how long Jennifer plans to continue with the revealing outfits and the ultra-sexy schtick. She is the mother of 6-year-old twins (Emme and Max) and has been married 3 times. On July 24th, she will turn 45. Madonna is 11 years older than Jennifer and still at it, so perhaps that is the answer.

The other performers this night were a new band from Harry Connick’s part of the world, Royal Teeth, who sang “Wild.” It consisted of a lot of confetti flying and Harry Connick, Jr., saying (just before they performed), “These guys are awesome.” Again, not going there, but they were peppy.

If I were handicapping this race, it would be a good bet that “someone from the South” will win. I say that because, of the remaining contestants—now reduced to only 9—6 of those 9 or 2/3 are Southerners. North Carolina has 2 entries (Caleb Johnson and Majesty Rose), while Alabama has 3 (C.J. Harris, Dexter Roberts and Jessica Meuse.) I’m counting Florida’s Sam Woolf in that number. That means that only Michigan (Jena Irene and Malaya Watson) has an outside chance with a Midwestern win and Alex Preston stands alone as the representative of the East coast (Mont Vernon, New Hampshire). With M.K. Nobilette gone, the west coast has no contestants remaining.

Since C.J. Harris was given a pass despite one of the most out-of-tune performances ever, and has been consistently sharp throughout the competition, he obviously has a high “Q” quotient. His fan base is motivated to keep him in the competition, even when he sang out-of-key for an entire song. I’m less certain that Majesty Rose and Sam Woolf can keep dodging the bullet of the bottom three, but Caleb Johnson certainly has to be considered a front-runner. I’d put Alex Preston in that category if he weren’t so nerdy, overall.

I, personally, would like to see Jena Irene and Malaya Watson hang in there, but they are female and, historically, the voting is done by teen-aged girls. This is not to say that a female contestant cannot win, since many have, but it is to say that perhaps in the years that a female won the competition, they might not have been competing against a powerhouse singer like Caleb.

I could live with the loud showman Caleb Johnson coming in Numero Uno and claiming the crown, but I’ll reserve judgment on who will be the next-to-last contestant standing, [whom barely anyone remembers after the final night.] (Anyone remember the name of the contestant Philip Phillips bested without looking it up? I thought not.) Those singers go on to have careers on Broadway and make a very nice living at it, thank you very much, so kudos to all. We all know that Chris Daughtry didn’t win, and neither did Jennifer Hudson, and they seem to be doing just fine.

I’d look for Jessica Meuse to be eliminated in the near future, and I’m still scratching my head over Majesty Rose and her many brushes with the axe. (Gotta’ get that ‘Q’ factor up, girl!)

“American Idol” of March 19, 2014: Who’s In It to Win It?

C.J. HarrisSo, who did well and who did poorly on “American Idol” on March 19, 2014?

There are 10 contestants left. Who was—far and away—the worst of the lot this night?
That one is easy to answer, since C.J. Harris singing “Invisible” by Hunter Hayes was so far off-key that it was painful to listen to. The judges all noted this—some more kindly than others. Keith Urban started off the criticism, saying, “Tonight it was really shaky with staying in tune.” He went on to try to soften the blow of his criticism by saying, “I understand it. I’d really encourage you to work on it, because you have everything else going for you.” (I’m tempted to state the obvious, “A singer who can’t sing in tune: Hmmmmmm.) Jennifer Lopez added, “This wasn’t what it should have been,” and both Urban and Lopez made mention of what a great job C.J. had done during rehearsals. This prompted Harry Connick, Jr. to reveal that that is why he never goes to rehearsals. “I want to see what happens when the red light goes on.” Harry said, “You really seem to feel the lyrics. It’s a discipline thing. You have a tendency to sing sharp. You can do it. You have the discipline to do it, but you must get the pitch thing under control.”

Uh….Hear! Hear! (Pun intended).

Most of the early singers did not set the stage on fire, with M.K.—red streaks in her newly-pouffed hair—stumbling gracelessly around the stage singing “Perfect” by Pink. Dexter followed, singing Georgia Lines’ song “Cruise”, with Connick being particularly explicit in his critique, calling it “meandering” and “bereft of joy.” Keith Urban said he liked the beginning of the song, but not the end. I agree with Harry Connick, Jr.

By the time Jena sang “Clarity” by Zed featuring Foxes, the crowd was ready for something better, and Jena delivered it. Keith pronounced it “the best performance of the night, so far” (which didn’t take much) and the light stick distributed to the crowd and Jena’s urging the crowd to wave them in time to her song was the mark of a more-polished performer than those who preceded her. Jena admitted to a love for electronic music, which caused Harry Connick to say, “I can really see you succeeding in that. I’m starting to get a really clear idea of who you are.”

Alex Preston got the most glowing reviews of the night for his rendition of “One Direction’s” song “The Story of My Life.” Usually, Harry Styles and the boys share the singing, no doubt somewhat based on range. Alex did it all and earned comments from Harry that Alex had “really hit the bull’s eye with the artistry. Really nice choices.” Keith echoed the praise, saying, “I thought that was really good, Brother,” and with Jennifer adding, “I loved it. You were very comfortable. You were like Buddy Holly, but without the glasses. You evoke greatness.” While I agree that Alex did, indeed, deliver, I question whether he has the crowd appeal of a Philip Phillips, last year’s winner.

Caleb Johnson came at some point after Alex with his loud rendition of Lady Gaga’s “The Edge of Glory.” Harry pointed out the obvious: Caleb has a powerhouse voice and few of the other contestants can match him for straight-out volume. Harry (Connick) compared the contest to David and Goliath saying, “You’re smart to do it.” He awarded Caleb an “A+” for originality, saying, “You do loud really, really well.” Keith was less impressed, finding the piece “lumbering” and Jennifer said she didn’t feel anything when Caleb sang, except that he could deliver power like no other contestant. A comment was made about the consistency with which Caleb delivers the goods.

Malaya, who had the dubious honor of immediately following Alex Preston, did a great job of selling Bruno Mars’ “When I Was Your Man.” Jennifer remarked on how Malaya sang “tenderly, beautifully, with so much feeling” and delivered the lyrics unchanged. She pronounced Malaya’s version “awesome.” Keith also praised Malaya for leaving the song alone and developing more vocal control. Harry Connick, Jr., —often the harshest critic—said, “You were completely present in every single word…The thing I liked was how sincere you were with every single word.”

So, score one for Malaya, Alex and Jena and deduct points from C.J., M.K. and Caleb.

Jessica Meuse sang “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People, which sounded very country. Jennifer said, of the song, “It fell right in your wheelhouse.” Harry pronounced her rendition(s) to be “one-dimensional” and Keith felt it had a “sixties country pop beat.” Comments were made about the fact that the lyrics are bleak, but the beat is so upbeat, with Harry expecting more of the message of the song to register in Jessica’s face as she sang.

Majesty Rose sang “Wake Me Up” by Avicii, prompting Harry to say, “I love what you did. I think you’re really smart,” but Keith didn’t find the completely folk version to his liking and Jennifer Lopez commented that she “saw fear” for the first time, following Majesty’s falling into the bottom three last week. I liked Majesty Rose tonight and I liked her from the beginning. This is usually the Kiss of Death on a night when my alma mater lost in overtime to Tennessee for the NCAA tournament berth.

Last, but not least, Sam Woolf sang “We Are Young by Fun featuring Janelle Monae. The program was running out of time, but Jennifer said, “I loved it. You sounded so much better than last week” and the other judges urged Sam to be more “assertive” and to “Come out on the stage and own this.” Sam is the cutest boy left, so I doubt if he’ll be cut.

It will be interesting to see if the rest of America is so tone-deaf that they couldn’t hear how poorly C.J. Harris’ performance was. There was much talk of how he was making barbecue sandwiches last year at this time. I fear he may be returning to making and wrapping BBQ, if the viewers at home are honest.

However, given the politics of things, it will probably be someone who gave a superlative performance (Alex comes to mind) who will not garner the votes.

Personally, I loved Malaya’s Bruno Mars song, thought Sam (Woolf) picked a great song for such a youthful-in-appearance singer, and enjoyed Jena’s glowstick schtick. I’m also confident that Caleb will deliver (again) with a better song next time, and I hope that Majesty Rose makes the cut. As for the rest: meh.

Hollie Cavanagh Eliminated from “American Idol” on Thursday, May 10th


Jessica Sanchez

The inevitable occurred tonight on the elimination night of “American Idol.” Hollie Cavanagh, who had been in the bottom three so many times previously, was finally kicked off. Just before the announcement was made, you could see in her eyes that she knew she was being cut from the competition.

The remaining three contestants are Phillip Phillips, Jason Ledet and Jessica Sanchez.  The Big Question of this year’s competition is whether it is going to be an All-Male Final Two, as one steady watcher thinks it will be, or if it will be the two strongest voices, Jessica Sanchez and Jason Ledet.


Phillip Phillips has all the teeny boppers on his side, and he is, indeed, charming. His vocals are not as strong as either Joshua’s or Jessica’s, but he is certainly an original, interesting, unique performer, and he seems to resonate with the voting public, much as Scotty did last year with his bass country-and-western vocals.


I don’t honestly have a horse in this race.  I could live with any of the three winning, for a variety of reasons.  The raw emotion registering on the faces of fellow contestants (especially Joshua) and judges, alike, (Jennifer Lopez) was touching as Hollie sang her final song. She did a great job with the lyric and melody that talked about how there are always other mountains to climb.

Carry on, contestants!

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