04/12/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

American Idol : Hollywood Week

It was Hollywood Week -- 181 inbred poodles in a box all vying for one Air Kong Squeaker Fetch Stick. This is where we get to see the dreams of 157 young people dashed and beauty shots of the Griffith Park Observatory.

But that's not the big story. Excuse me, the BIG story!!

According to Ryan, this was the moment all of America has been waiting for. The suspense has been killing us! Just how would Ellen DeGeneres do replacing Paula Abdul? It's amazing any work got done at all the last few months.

Well breathe easy, America. She did fine. She's got a brain. She's got ears. She says funny things sometimes. Considering the caliber of American Idol judges (other than Simon) that makes her Mozart. And now that there finally is someone on the panel who has something to offer, Kara really disappears into the woodwork; confirming what we all knew -- she's as useless as cufflinks on pants.

The Ryan Seacrest hyperbole was flying. Adding to the pressure, Ryan said the kids were performing on "the most hi-profile stage in the world -- the Kodak Theatre." Uh, what about Carnegie Hall? Or the Kennedy Center? Or London Palladium? Or any other major venue that was built before 2001? Yes, they hold the Academy Awards there, but also the Vanilla Ice concert.

By and large there are some terrific singers this go-round, although there were the usual band of idiots, probably selected more for their ability to cry than sing.

Poor Vanessa. She's the country girl from Tennessee who had never been on an aero-plane. She flamed out. The movie of her life will not be A Star Is Born. It will be Deliverance.

One guy sang while his wife was in labor. He made it through. Several girls sang like they were in labor. They did not make it through.

But the ones who were good and didn't have moronic names like Skibowski were very good.

Andrew Garcia, a likable lug in Lew Wasserman glasses did an acoustic version of "Straight Up" that was far better than the original. So not only was Ellen DeGeneres better than Paula Abdul. Andrew Garcia was, too.

Didi Benami, a waitress from Los Angeles, made a Kara-written song sound good, which puts her on a plane with the guy who created fuel out of manure.

Crystal Bowersox did "Natural Woman" better than thirty-five other Idol contestants but not as good as sixteen more.

I really liked Janell Wheeler, a country singer with a nice tone. I forget if she was the one with nine brothers, nine kids, or survived a wood chipper accident.

Another favorite was Lilly Scott, although I have this sneaking suspicion it's really Tracey Ullman in a silver wig.

Tonight is "Group Night." Let me just review it now. There will be ten meltdowns, two girls who turn into psycho bitches, one who bounces from group to group, two guys who are tired and go to bed early, three groups that forget the words, one group that is horrible but advances anyway, two singers who have laryngitis, and now that Paula's no longer on the show, six guys who sleep with her. Tell me if I'm right. I'll be watching Modern Family.

Read more from Ken here.