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March 28, 2007
Fashions hit sour notes

Fox/Frank Micelotta

Like it or not, Season 6 of "American Idol" has generated more than music. There's also a lot of buzz about what some of the contestants are wearing, particularly on competition nights.

There's this:

We said goodbye to Antonella Barba weeks ago, but the talk-show circuit is currently circulating the idea that Haley Scarnato has taken her place - visually.
And, while Haley does sing somewhat better than Antonella, there's merit to the notion that Haley - at least in the past two weeks - has been upping the eye-candy ante. She wore short shorts, high heels and a slinky halter top last week; on Tuesday night, it was a banded-bottom black dress and black stilettos.

I'm all for going for the glam and, at age 24, I guess she can pull it off. It just seems a little risque and a little risky at the same time. Judge Simon Cowell said Haley's performance Tuesday night was "sweet but forgettable." Her bigger concern is that her fashion choices might mean people are forgetting to vote because they're, shall we say, distracted.

Boots were big on Tuesday night: Lakisha Jones, Gina Glocksen (shown above) and Jordin Sparks all sported them. Judge Randy Jacksoon seemed to notice the most, telling Lakisha, "I liked the boots." And, later to Gina, "It must be boot night."

Personally, I wasn't a big fan of any of these three contestants' emsembles. Lakisha's dress was graphically distracting. Gina's spandex dress looked like seatbelt material and was waaay tight. And Jordin's mix of picnic/parochial attire was a mismatch.

I know, I know. I sound like Grandma Moses in a muu muu!

I think the biggest improvement comes from Melinda Doolittle, who updated her hairstyle last week (just in time for the British Invasion) and kept it fresh and fun again this week. But I'm not sure leggings are the best choice. Simon flat out said "I hate the outfit."

As for the five guys, Blake Lewis kind of has that haberdashery-meets-Abercrombie & Fitch thing going. He's always pretty polished, and he wears clothes well. The thing is, the guy can do it all: sing and style.

Chris Sligh and Phil Stacey don't seem the clotheshorse types, and I'm not sure it even matters to their fans. Chris has always come off as the perpetual student going for an interview in someone else's tie and wrinkled shirt. I can't decide if Phil should always wear a hat or just sometimes. I don't have anything against men who are bald. But I think "Idol" fans would have to agree a tall guy like Phil stands out when he's minus a chapeau.

Chris Richardson has that in-between look. He wears a tie most nights, with a bomber jacket or a street jacket and mostly jeans. Again, nothing unusal for a guy who is 22 - or looks like Justin Timberlake for that matter.

That leaves us with Sanjaya Malakar, who was an unbelievable fashion DO NOT Tuesday night. I'm sure he thinks it's terribly chic to try a different hairstyle each week, but he's using his coif to make up for his lack of singing abilities. And I loved that Simon called him out on it: "I presume there was no mirror in your dressing room."

Sanjaya's foolish faux hawk, leather jacket, baggy jeans and tennis shoes was a makeover in the making. But hey, he'll probably be firing up that flat iron next Tuesday or going Farrah Fawcett on me.

For more dish on "Idol," check out my postings at Idol Chatter.

And hey, add comments of your own. I know you have an opinion!

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