When Phllip Phillips admitted he didn't really like his coronation song, "Home," the situation struck us as a bit unfair. After all, with the song charting on iTunes and a full summer 'American Idol' tour planned, he's obviously going to have to play the song over and over.
But then we realized something even more troubling: "American Idol" is "The Hunger Games." Let's rewind for a moment: 12 contestants are plucked from obscurity, placed in front of the entire nation, and assigned mentors and judges. Then they perform for fickle viewers, hoping their combination of talents and natural likability will draw in enough support from the distant public to keep them alive. They're picked off, one by one, until only a victor is left.
Then the winner, who is lavished with adoration, money and fame, has to embark on a tour of the country and continue to keep up appearances for locals expecting the same thing they saw on TV.
Suzanne Collins, who wrote the series the movies are based on, has long said the story was inspired by the discord between reality-TV and news. "I was flipping through images of reality television, there were these young people competing for a million dollars ... and I saw images of the Iraq War," Collins said. "Two things began to sort of fuse together in a very unsettling way, and there is really the moment when I got the idea for Katniss' story."
Though this season's "Idol" didn't have a true Katniss (which some say is a big problem), HuffPost Entertainment decided to pair up the characters from the movie with the real-life personalities from this season of the show. Check out the pairings below, and read our explanations after the image.
(All "Hunger Games" images courtesy of Lionsgate. All other photos are AP.)
Peeta Mellark and Phillip Phillips: This one's easy: They're both winners. Like Peeta, Phillip didn't really have a clear, overwhelming talent (like Jessica's voice, for example). Instead, both Phillip and his "Games" counterpart trudged it out until they outlasted everyone else. (Except Katniss, we know!). And just like Peeta worked at his family's bakery, Phillip used to toil away at the family pawn shop.
Rue and Jessica Sanchez: Though some might think Jessica is a clear Katniss, we find her to be a bit more Rue-like. For one, Rue is known for her sweet singing voice. Both Rue and Jessica were also the youngest contestants in their respective competitions. Also, Katniss was a steel-minded, crafty young lady who won.
Effie Trinket and J.Lo: The easiest of them all. Extremely earnest and occasionally insufferable, Effie Trinket and the "Idol" judge are often sparks of energy in what would otherwise be dull moments. Also, look at them!
Haymitch Abernathy and Steven Tyler: If Haymitch had a guitar, he'd look like Steven Tyler when performing. Both have a natural swagger that can sometimes be confused as stumbling.
Cinna and Randy Jackson: Comfortable, cool and oddly comforting, Cinna and Randy have what it takes to bring out the best in performers. They're neither overwhelmingly saccharine like Effie and J.Lo nor as unpredictable as Haymitch and Steven. They're just right!
Caesar Flickerman and Ryan Seacrest: They're both natural hosts, and they both have great teeth.