'American Idol' Top 12 Results: Dispatches from Inside the Dome

idol-david-cook-seacrest.jpg Zap2it was live on the scene during the Wednesday (March 17) "American Idol" results show at CBS studios in Hollywood. With the contestants' anxious families in attendance, to say the atmosphere was tense would be an understatement.

Luckily, we had David Cook there to open the show and loosen up the mood a bit with "Jumpin' Jack Flash." To put it bluntly... he rocked it. The idols should be required to go through a few weeks of Idol boot camp before the show goes live, with former idols there as drill sargeants. The whole Top 12 watched Cook's performance with stunned looks on their faces, as if they were just realizing "Oh, so that's how it's done."

Meanwhile, the Judges didn't seem quite so impressed with their Season 7 winner. Ellen, Randy, Simon and Kara chatted with one another throughout his performance. It became immediately clear that despite rumors to the contrary, Simon and Ellen get along just fine.

Speaking of getting along, we were watching carefully for any signs of bitterness between Simon and Ryan Seacrest, but it appeared to be business as usual! Their "altercation" on Tuesday night was definitely staged, and we'd bet that the rumors of tension between them are totally off-base.

While we'll never be surprised when Tim Urban ends up in the Bottom Three (though we don't think his performance of "Under My Thumb" was that terrible), it seemed that the entire audience was surprised to find Paige  Miles there. Her performance of "Honky Tonk Woman" was the only one to get people up out of their seats on Tuesday night, and her laryngitis didn't seem to slow her down at all. Perhaps Stones fans weren't pleased with the lyric change?

On Tuesday, Crystal Bowersox appeared to be a bit distracted, and she admitted that she had a lot on her mind -- not only pertaining to the show, but also to "family stuff." The mystery was heightened on Wednesday: Crystal appeared agitated throughout the show, barely sitting down and talking to bodyguards and stagehands during the break. She pointed someone out in the audience several times. After the show, we tried to pry some details out of the bodyguard, but he kept mum!

After Orianthi's performance of "According to You," the judges walked up to congratulate her. Ellen -- who is, once again, the most popular judge with the crowd by a long shot -- paused to hug a few fans in the audience before heading backstage. Orianthi seemed to be as big of an "Idol" fan as we are -- she made sure to talk to each of the Top 12 before she left the stage.

Nobody in the audience is surprised when Lacey Brown lands in the bottom three... except maybe for Lacey's mom, whose jaw drops. Tim is safe. And the teenage girls flooding the pit breathe a collective sigh of relief.

Ke$ha's performance was pre-taped in the early afternoon, so we missed that one. After watching it play back, we're not too disappointed. What statement was she trying to make by kicking in the TVs while she was ... on TV? And why does she insist on a dollar sign in the middle of her name? We get it, Ke$ha. You're richer than us. You can break TVs for fun and you have money in your name.

Finally, it's time to find out who gets the boot: Lacey. She makes one last hopeful attempt at the Judges' Save (yes, they're still doing that) but it seems her luck has run out.

Just as we were getting ready to head home and re-watch the whole thing on DVR to see if we ended up on TV, the warm-up host asked us to sit back down for another performance. No, not David Cook or Orianthi, much to our dismay.

The band was called Sons of Sylvia, who are currently on Tour with Idol favorite Carrie Underwood. Apparently, they won the FOX competition "Next Great American Band" three years ago (back when they were calling themselves The Clark Brothers). Tonight they took the stage to pre-record a performance that will appear on a future Idol results show. 

Don't miss our full recap of last night's show!

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Photo credit: FOX