For much of American Idol's Season 11, it seemed that the finale would come down to a competition between Skylar Laine and Joshua Ledet. In particular, Ledet seemed to be the judges' favorite. They gave him more than a dozen standing ovations and Jennifer Lopez said Ledet's performances were her favorite part of the show.
But then, both Laine and Ledet were eliminated. Whatever the cause, their elimination is a boon for the remaining two Idol 11 contestants, one of whom will be taking home the title of American Idol.
I'm sure we'll see Laine and Ledet again--and not just on the two day finale and this summer's American Idol Live tour.
Meet the top two singers of Idol 11 and tune in to the finale on Fox May 22 & 23 8/7 C.
1. Phillip Phillips
Ever since the beginning, Phillip Phillips has had a huge fan base. While the twenty-one-year-old isn't particularly fashionable, he is is a multi-talented musician--who also plays the bass, piano and drums. Plus, he has a sensitive side and was willing to let the world see his adorable bromance with fellow contestant Heejun Han.
That judges frequently seemed disappointed in Phillips' performances only served to garner him more support from viewers, who continued to vote for him in droves, perhaps to ensure he wouldn't be eliminated.
In the most recent episode, Phillips held his own against Joshua Ledet with a great cover of the song "Beggin’" by Norwegian hip-hop group Madcon (Judge Steven Tyler's pick), but didn't bring down the house with his other performances.
Still, odds are in Phillips' favor that he'll win American Idol. After all, tween girls make up the majority of the viewer voters and the last four winners have all been boys.
2. Jessica Sanchez
On the 11th season of American Idol the now 16-year-old singer hasn't impressed the Idol judges as much, although Tyler once said, "I don't think you could sing a song bad." Sanchez has twice failed to do justice to Whitney Houston covers, and introducing her alter-ego, Bebe Chez, didn't go over that well.
But Sanchez is a scrappy fighter, she's got virulent fans, and when she manages to pick the right song she can really blow critics away. So don't count her out until Idol host Ryan Seacrest has stretched the announcement of the winner out to the last seconds of the two-night finale.