Nick Tucci (Standing in for Shane Avery)
@nick_toochAfter an all-out lovers' quarrel last night, with the top 4 singing their favorite "Break-Ups and Make-Ups" songs, we can only wonder one thing: who did America love? "Next to the finale, this is the most brutal cut of the season," Ryan ominously says before announcing the show. Like every Thursday night recap show, we catch the contestants after their performances heading to dinner in their blacked out SUVs. At their round-table meal, the singers reminisce about their choices and feedback, noting that they "don't think the judges know who's going home tonight." Obviously, they "don't EVEN wanna think about it," and with that Jena, Alex, Caleb, and Jessica head home for the night. We come back to a very scruffy Ryan Seacrest, positioned near the top 4 who are waiting for the results. As they stand there like sitting ducks in a firing line, Ryan pulls his signature "we'll find out after the commercial break" much to everyone's chagrin (even the judges). The obligatory Ford car commercial featuring the remaining contestants centers around what everyone misses from their hometown. They happen upon a music shop, filled with guitars and records, and even Jena gets her Detroit-esque chili dog from a hot dog stand conveniently placed outside the shop. When we return to the studio audience, Ryan has an over-sized silver platter filled with beignets to remind Harry Connick, Jr. of his hometown of New Orleans. After watching Harry fling a few of the pastries into the audience, Ryan FINALLY lets us know that the first person safe into the Top 3 is Jena Irene. She'll have a limo ride through her hometown of Farmington, MI. Another vignette after the commercial break shows the contestants having a picnic by the water and realizing that they haven't been home in three months. After that, Ryan informs us that Caleb Johnson is the second contestant into the Top 3, having his homecoming parade in his hometown of Asheville, NC. Last but not least, the decision comes down to Jessica Meuse and Alex Preston. The obvious third spot goes to Alex, after Jessica showed only one great performance out three last night. Alex's friends and family will welcome him home in and around his town of Mont Vernon, NH. A teary-eyed Meuse chose to remind everyone how she's gotten this far by singing her original song "Blue-Eyed Lie". Check out next week when the Top 3 parade through the places they call home! It should be a fierce battle between the theatrical rocker, soulful starlet, and harmonic hipster! Keep Up With PopWrapped On The Web!