‘American Idol’ top 6 rankings: Jessica Sanchez, Phillip Phillips rise

And then there were six.

If “American Idol” was keen to remind us just how quickly things can change, they did so in spades with the top 7’s second go-around. the performer that we had ranked #1 going into the show in Colton Dixon was sent packing, and it proved that having a bad week at this stage really supersedes having a large voting audience when there are so many other options.

We have a new #1 this week, but there are also some other changes across the board.

6. Hollie Cavanagh (last week: #6) – We give Hollie some serious credit for improving this past week, especially since it’s really not easy to transition from being someone who is panned by the judges into someone who is actually confident on stage.

Even with this in mind, though, Hollie is still a few steps behind everyone else in the competition at the moment. We think this experience will make her a better star down the road, but she has to realize that she needs to have more fun not just when she’s singing, but also when she appears on camera.

5. Elise Testone (last week: #6) – Elise is on a bit of a rollercoaster ride. When she’s fantastic, everyone loves her and thinks she’s a frontrunner. If she makes a mistake, though, the judges dogpile her and she ends up in the bottom three.

While Elise’s “Let’s Get It On” was a bit awkward and uncomfortable for a family show, her vocals on it were still pretty strong. We think Elise is primed to do well during Queen week, and she should be able to keep herself in for at least one more week.

4. Skylar Laine (last week: #3) – Really, we see three of the top four singers being free to move around from one position to the next, and it all depends on both where they perform during the show and what they perform.

If “Idol” had less of a country presence last year, we think that Skylar would actually be much more of a force to be reckoned with. We don’t really think she’s ever gotten her due as someone who can win the whole competition, and she hasn’t really had a dud so far this season (which is something that even our top-ranked artist for the week can’t say).

3. Joshua Ledet (last week: #2) – Will Joshua win the show? We think he’s going to have a challenge, but the absence of Colton Dixon may help him in the short-term to pick up some of the teenage girl voice.

The biggest concern we have for Joshua is that neither of his performances this week are really memorable compared to what he did in the past — in particular his “Runaway Baby” that inexplicably left him in the bottom three.

2. Jessica Sanchez (last week: #4) – During Thursday’s result show, Jimmy Iovine gave Jessica the best advice that she could have ever received — act younger! Get some songs that suit your age! Jessica’s without a doubt the best pure singer this whole season, but she’s not getting across the sort of youthful personality that someone who is a teenager should be projecting.

Jessica¬†getting¬†the save has sparked her fans, and now the best thing she can do is tackle some more familiar songs that “Stuttering,” and actually prove that she can have the fun on stage that matches her incredible talent.

1. Phillip Phillips (last week: #5) – While we don’t full agree with Jimmy’s assessment of the competition between Phillip and Colton for female votes, we do think that Colton getting out ends up helping Phillip in a big way. He is exactly the sort of guy that tends to pick up votes, and he’s the only person in the competition who has not faced the bottom three.

You can question whether or not that Phillip is the best, but with the results as they are it’s pretty hard to dispute that he is the favorite now to get the confetti shower on May 22. Now, we just need to try and see him control his facial expressions a bit more so he’s not smiling during a song about heartbreak.

Who is at the top of your ranking at the moment? Be sure to answer in the poll below, and as always check back all week for more coverage of all things “Idol.”

Photo: Fox

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