Sole 'Survivor' Sandra Talks Strategy, Russell and why she deserved to take the title
In our final "Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains" exit interview, second-time "Survivor" player -- and second-time "Survivor" winner -- Sandra Diaz-Twine, a mom of two, paused to chat with MSN about her strategy, all that drama and being cast as a villain.
So two-time player and a two-time winner. How are you feeling?
I feel really, really, really good. I mean, Russell's upset
but I'm really, really happy.
Are you happy because he's upset, or are you happy despite the fact that he's upset?
Both. Because the more it eats him up, the more entertaining it is. He's all like, "That just shows you that the game is flawed." No, Russell, that shows you that it’s a social game. That just shows that you don't know what "Survivor" is all about. Just because you saw Micronesia on DVD and you played in Samoa doesn't make you an expert. I've been here since day one.
Do you think Russell's learned his lesson, making it to the final
three twice and not taking any votes from the jury?
Russell could play "Survivor" a 100 times and he will never win. Especially now that we've seen "Samoa" and "Heroes Vs. Villains." People might attach themselves to him for a while, but when its said and done, they think, "I don't know if I should get rid of him. I don't know what he's got cooked up with other people. Is he talking behind my back and making me look stupid?" They know he can't be trusted so he'll never win "Survivor." And if he loses, it's everybody else's fault.
Were you surprised that you won? It seems like Parvati had a strong following on the jury as well.
She was good, she was good. But she didn't win. And I have no regrets. I deserved to win. I thought that she had five and I had four. But I thought that I lost by one vote. But I knew I had a chance because the Heroes knew I was after Russell. But they didn't believe me. So I was shocked that I got all five Hero votes and Courtney. So I got six out of the nine.
Rupert was really pushing the Heroes to show that you were being authentic, but they didn't seem to buy it.
At the beginning, no. And then at the end, too, when Rupert went home. That day I decided to give him my idol and he messed it up by telling Russell on me. Because when I said to him, "we can still get rid of Russell," he said, "Me, you and Colby?" And I said, "No, me and you." So to him it didn't add up. But the truth was that I had planned to give him my idol. Nobody needed to know because every time I had a plan, somebody told on me.
It seems like you weren't quite a Villain or quite a Hero. Were you surprised about how you were categorized?
Yeah, I was, because I was like, "What did I do?" And Jeff was like, "You have villainous characteristics because you take out whoever you have to – you cut their throat and you stab them in the back to stay in the game." So I was like, "Okay, if that makes me a villain, then I’m a villain." But that's just self-preservation. That's playing the game. I;ve got to put myself first in "Survivor," otherwise why bother playing? So when I was put on the Villains, I was like, "Okay, of all the Villains, I'll be the nicest one." I like to be easy to be around.
When you were offered the chance to come back, did you automatically want to?
Yeah, I jumped on it. My family was vacationing in Disney
because my husband was about to deploy to Afghanistan. And they called me and
said, "If you want to do this you have to leave now. We've got two weeks to
move on it." So I was like, "Oh my God, either they'll pick me or they won't."
And they picked me, so he left for Afghanistan and I left for "Survivor."
Do your kids watch?
I have two girls, eight and 12. They do. They're proud of me and they love "Survivor" and they've got all the autographs and pictures. But to them it's just mommy. And I've won before, so they've already gone through this. I'm just mommy and I'll always just be mommy, no matter what.
Do people think you’re all set with the money? A million doesn’t go as far as it used to.
You know what, I live a simple life. I live in North
Carolina, where it's not as expensive. It's not like I live in New York City.
So my money has gone far. It's plenty for us.
Is it hard seeing your husband going to Afghanistan?
I'm strong – I spent five years in the army. That's how we
met. So I understand how it is. And it's important. Plus, the army actually
prepared me for "Survivor."
On the show, they kept saying you’re the weakest physical player. Does that piss you off?
That's actually true. But it's a strategy. And it's a
strategy that Colby actually used this go round. And it worked for him. Look,
he came off as a weak link, but he was the last Hero standing. Because it made
him not seem like a threat. He’s won the most challenges as a player. So in the
Outback, he got voted off because he was such a threat. So this time he
underplayed it. And it worked for him. Because they were like, "We've got to get
rid of Amanda and Candice and Rupert, he's really strong. Colby's weak, so we
can get him later." People totally bought it and it worked. He was the last
Hero. It was all strategy. But in the end he was outnumbered.
So what’s next for you?
The first time around I bought my house cash-money, so we're set with that. We still have money in the bank and this check will go in the bank, too. And I’m going to take a trip in the summer with my kids to meet my husband's side of the family, they're in Germany. But other than that, we live a simple life. I’m smart with my money. I clip coupons. I don't care about the money. It just makes things comfortable for us, gives me time to spend with my kids.
Will you play again?
If they called me back, I would play again – if I was missing the game. I'd have to defend my title. But right now I'm not missing the game. I'm ready to be home and spend time with my family.
Runner-Up on the all-star 20th season, Shallow spills on her alliance with Russell and why she'd rather be a villain
So you almost had it this go-round, too. Were you surprised when they called Sandra's name?
I was really bummed. I knew it was a long-shot for me to win because of everyone's speeches on the jury. Noone was really even asking me a question. Nobody really had anything positive to say about me -- I was just lumped in with Russell. But when it came to Sandra, they were like, "Oh my God, you're an angel. We don't know what we would have done without you. We think you might be the mother of sweet baby Jesus." So it was completely obvious to me that it wasn't going to be me. The jury was campaigning really really hard on behalf of Sandra at that point. So it was pretty obvious that Jeff wasn't going to call my name.
Do you think it was solely because of your alliance with Russell that you didn't win?
I don't think it was just Russell. It was a lot of things -- previous agendas, previous alliances, a couple of the girls who didn't like me and would have voted for anyone but me. But I do think that there was a lot of resentment and animosity towards Russell that spilled over on to me. I was his major alliance right from the beginning. So it makes sense. But some of the other players, they just didn't want to see me win again, I'm sure.
But for a villain, you were pretty well-liked. Do you think you were put on the right team?
I'd much rather be a villain. I enjoyed myself on the villains. I'm really glad they made that call. I think I would have slit my wrists on the heroes. They were so depressing. But in the beginning I was like, 'Why am I a villain when Candice is a hero and Amanda is a hero?' They did the same things as me. But in the end, looking back, I was so happy that they put me on the villains side. Plus, I am pretty crafty and I like to play as hard as I can. It's freeing to be a villain. There's noone looking up to you like you're a role model. You're a villain, you can do whatever you want. You can run a muck.
So what's next for you?
I'm starting a business. I'm becoming a businesswoman! I'm opening up a wellness center in Santa Monica, Calif. It's going to be yoga, pilates, fitness, nutrition. It's going to be pretty much everything you need to be healthy on the inside and out. "Survivor" has really inspired me to focus on developing my own internal health, my spiritual health. And I want to help other people, too, so I think it will be a positive way to put my energy into something.
Do you think you'd play "Survivor" again if they called you back?
I will not play "Survivor" again, I'm hanging up my jersey. I'm going to be focused on building up my business and making my millions through other avenues.
Do you get recognized a lot more since playing on "Heroes Vs. Villains"?
I do. It's weird. I went skiing with my family and I was wearing a snowsuit, a hat, skiing goggles and I still got recognized! People were coming up to me, "Parvati, Parvati, Parvati!" How can they even tell? All you could see was my lips. Maybe it's my voice.
So now that the game's over, will you keep in touch with Russell?
I don't know. I don't really keep in touch with Russell. Really, the first time I've seen him since the show was at the finale. I don't hold any ill-will towards anyone, because really, it's just a game. But I don't think I'd really want to be friends with anyone either. It's kind of a warped foundation on which to build a friendship. We came in and we played a game based on distress and deceit and elimination, so I don't think that's a strong basis for friendship.
The most villainous of the villains still thinks he should have won -- again.
"I earned it," says Texas oil businessman Hantz, who didn't earn a single vote on the finale. "I'm the one who truly knows how to play this game." We caught up with Russell to talk alliances, why he should have won and Russell in real life.
Nobody voted for you, huh?
Well, if you ask Sprint Mobile, about five million people voted for me!
Do you think you should have won?
For sure. It's nice when you have facts behind your talking. Because America says I'm the best. It's not "fan favorite." It's player of the game. MVP, if you will. The only reason people say that social game thing is because it's a weak jury of weak players. The jury members are like, 'You did this, you did that.' It's a game. Learn how to play. Learn how to win. Honestly, if America voted, Russell Hantz would have been the Survivor. Because I know how to play the game. If it was monopoly and someone owned Boardwalk, you pay up. It's a game.
Were you surprised that Sandra took it?
I wasn't surprised, but it was shocking that Sandra took it because she was terrible, terrible, terrible! If Parvati won, I would have said she deserved it because she plays a good game. But Sandra? C'mon! I respect the game too much to say that Sandra played a good game. I was out there -- I saw it with my own eyes. It wasn’t a good game. There were some great players out there but she wasn’t one of them.
Do you think that Parvati was in the final three because of you?
Definitely. I drug her all over the place. I dragged her to the final three kicking and screaming, I got her there despite herself. I saved that girl's butt time and time and time again. She never saved me once. But I saved her. I'm the only one that was fighting for me. But I was also fighting for Parvati, for our alliance.
Do you mind being hated?
In the game, I don't care if people hate me. I don't care. I will get up and say what I want to say. And I'm not going to say what Colby wants me to say, what Parvati wants me to say, what Jeff wants me to say. And especially not Rupert. Rupert's an idiot. Rupert's a freaking moron. And Colby's a weak link. Colby is the Jaison from my season. A weak little man. But I am who I am. And anyway, America loves me.
How did you feel about Sandra burning your hat?
I was like, "Okay, if you want to play it like that -- the game's over, it just shows what kind of person you are." It shows that she's a vindictive little you know what -- it starts with a B.
You said last season that you don't let your daughters watch the show. Does that rule stand?
That's the only thing I regret -- putting my daughters in the middle of this. They don't watch those episodes. I regret saying anything about them. I was so whipped out there -- I was in the zone so much, I was like in a fantasy world that I couldn't get out of. But I shouldn't have brought them into it. My kids didn't watch those episodes. I made sure of it. You do anything when you're out there to win. It's crazy how it affects you. But it does.
Is Russell on "Survivor" different than Russell in real life?
I am aggressive. That's why I'm successful in business. And I make things happen. But I'm a strong, loving man. Here's the thing -- you can count on me, in real life. I'll take care of you, I'll do what I have to do. That's different on "Survivor."
How do people react to you when they meet you in person? Do they have the image of evil Russell from "Survivor"?
They all say one thing: you should have won. That's what they say when they see me. That's what they say.
Would you play again if "Survivor" came a-calling?
I don't know. The game is awesome. But it'll be my decision. Not CBS. I'm in the driver's seat now. That's how powerful I am outside of "Survivor." You want me to play, then you gotta pay. It's not about money for me. I don't know if I would play "Survivor" again because people have seen me in action. I don't want to go out there and look like a fool if I get voted off first or second. But my fans love me. I want to go again just for my fans. But I'll be back on TV soon. Maybe "Dancing With the Stars" or "American Idol." I'm winning something. I like it. You haven't seen the last of me.
With Jonathan Rhys Meyers back to rehab, maybe these loose canons will give the TV doc's franchise a second thought
Looks like Jonathan Rhys Meyers could use some "Tudors" in his personal life. The 32-year-old star of Showtime's monarchy drama is headed back to rehab for his issues with alcohol, following another in a long line of intoxicated, airport-related fracases.
And as reported this week, Dr. Drew is having issues casting notably self-destructive famous folks for the fourth installment of "Celebrity Rehab," having allegedly been rejected by Lindsay Lohan and Heather Locklear, among others. Which could have something to do with how irreparably damaging prior celebs' participation has been for their reputation. (In retrospect, they should have stuck with "Surreal Life" and the like.)
Seems like these two might be destined for a little substance-abuse-recovery tango. Actually, it's pretty doubtful a star of Rhys Meyers' (or just Meyers?) stature would debase himself even further with public withdrawal, but the following five trainwrecks may want to consider whether they're really above a little VH1-assisted recuperation.
Hey, if the guy's gonna see his career spiral downward from "Platoon" and "Wall Street" to "Two and a Half Men," I don't really see how "Celebrity Rehab" is that much further down the rabbit hole.
America may have talent, but that "Baywatch" fella can really chow. With all due respect for his current judging duties (hehe, duties) on a hit network show, the guy was videotaped drunkenly eating a hamburger off his kitchen floor, sans shirt. His dignity could well be restored by letting a film crew chronicle him sober for a stretch.
At this point, it's hard say whether "24" refers to Sutherland's concluding FOX action-drama or his blood-alcohol level (cha-ching!). The Emmy winner was most recently alleged to have been forceably removed from a strip club at 4 a.m. while hammered.... and shirtless (what is it with these guys and shirts?). And the temperamental actor has also had more than one arrest on DUI-related charges, in addition to other notorious bad behavior. Looks like this "Lost Boy" needs help becoming a found man.
Second-tier reality TV is no place for a girl with Amy's set of pipes (although it's possibly appropriate for one with her recently implanted fake breasts), but after her latest alleged booze-induced hospitalization, the bouffant-favoring soulstress could use some time in the spotlight that doesn't involve embarrassing paparazzi photos.
What could possibly create more of a buzz for Dr. Drew's fourth "Rehab" installment than casting porn star Janine Lindermulder, aka Jesse James' ex-wife, whom Sandra Bullock repeatedly accused of drug abuse and negligent parenting? Lindermulder, of course, hasn't exactly corroborated Bullock's claims, but Janine honey, wouldn't it be worth seeking treatment regardless for a little image-rebuff?
... And one to go
9 p.m. Can I be honest? I'm a bottle of wine deep as I write this. "Lost" is ending and it's the most worthwhile television I've encountered since "The Sopranos," and before that we're talking "Seinfeld," wherein I wasn't exactly expecting to see well-kept secrets unearthed, like George really killed Susan intentionally and his brother was the Soup Nazi.
Also: See the fansite | Video: See full episodes | Twitter: Follow MSN TV
9:04 p.m. I've gone for this ride with the rest of you, enthusiastically every step, and what's more, not trying to fit every puzzle piece together along the way, forsaking figuring it all out for enjoyment. Why? There ain't no figuring it out. Not for the most part anyway. Anyone who tells you this week that seeing Jack and his son having cereal with sister/Aunt Claire was something they nailed back in '06 has some serious skeletons in their closet. (I still say Mom will be Juliet. Okay, or maybe Ana Lucia. But not Kate!)
9:14 p.m. The body count's officially begun (Sayid, Jin, Sun, etc.), so seeing Widmore, Ben, and Alpert at a standoff by the second commercial break on the second to last episode doesn't cause me to spill my drink amidst some startled lurch. It's gonna take more than that at this point, even while I already lament the show's passing, watching it like some terminally ill relative, knowing it's going soon, missing it already. I wanted Ben to empty a round into Widmore. He didn't, of course, and besides, that wouldn't have caused a spill either.
I wanted Ben this close to the finale, that much I can tell you. I root for him now. More than Locke even. But that's just me. And that's also because Locke is long since gone, the Smoke Monster now inhabiting his body.
Desmond came off as particularly evil this episode, wearing it well, eyes agleam in this new light. This flip-flopping is not comfortable for me, this swapping out of assessment, of prediction. That said, the ability of the characters to don and doff good guy/bad guy personnae is unparalleled in TV history.
9:30 p.m. Many of you have sought out predictions from me here, recaps be damned. So here goes: There will be an ending, but not any answers. The line is thin, to be sure. There will be closure, but the meaning behind it will be speculative -- fodder for message board soldiers and water cooler warriors. Heated exchanges will ensue, podcast pontification at an all-time high.
9:37 p.m. OK, so empyting a round into Widmore evidently wasn't out of the question, and Ben stating that Charles "doesn't get to save his daughter" resonated, reverberated, revved the engine on the vehicle that is "Lost." Ben may very well be the last man standing, but alongside Jack, Sawyer, Kate and Hurley. They MUST survive. And the lesson learned? That whether we are dealt all clubs or some clubs and a few diamonds or spades and hearts and no clubs, that the end result is the same -- and that there HAS to be a peace in that.
9:44 p.m. "Help me let go." A recurring statement in this episode, another way of saying there has to be peace in whatever hand you're dealt resulting in the same outcome. Desmond says it's why he ran over Locke, who reiterates it to surgeon Jack. We will all have to do this with the series itself.
9:46 p.m. Jacob: "I didn't pluck any of you out of a happy existence." Is this really true of all of the characters, or is it merely something the majority of the show's audience identifies with, can relate to?
Furthermore, is that even Jacob's brother inhabiting Locke's body? The same brother we saw in last week's episode? I say no. Hell no. That brother was merely an offering that served to unleash the Smoke Monster. Good can beget evil as surely as evil can beget good.
9:54 p.m. Jacob, in essence, baptizes Jack, and Jack keenly inquires how long he will have to "do this job" for.
9:56 p.m. Anyone who says they saw Desmond, Kate and Sayid sharing a ride in the second to last episode five years back? Skeletons aplenty.
9:58 p.m. Well, well, well ... Ana Lucia.
See. You. Sunday.
Chad Ochocinco heads home
This week's elimination wasn't too much of a surprise, but it was still hard to see comeback kid Chad Ochocinco take the floor for the last time. He gave some truly memorable performances this season, and none better than his soulful waltz earlier this week. In fact, Len said that in a "normal" season Chad would have been headed to the finals.
Photos: See performance pics | Video: See 'Dancing' clips and full episodes
Chad said he enjoyed the journey and learned so much that he felt like he had already won. His partner Cheryl praised his humility and gentleness. The ever-persistent Brooke Burke asked Chad and Cheryl (again) if they're dating and they (once again) gave her an ambiguous answer: Chad said they'll remain friends.
So what's in store for next week's finale? Given the level of performance in the semifinals we should expect great things. Nicole and Evan tied this week, and Erin was only three points behind on the judges' leaderboard. That mirror ball trophy is truly up for grabs!
Here's the lowdown on this week's performances:
Our Olympian had his best week ever. He scored his second perfect 30 for a moody, intense paso doble. Evan wore the bullfighter's cape so well that he and Anna scored the encore! The pair's nimble and happy go lucky foxtrot was a big hit with the audience and a testament to the range of Evan's skills. He can do light and he can do dark -- the judges love him either way.
Even though Derek was injured this week he and Nicole pulled out all the stops. They danced a truly acrobatic tango that earned them their second perfect 30 of the season and made Carrie Ann cry. Their second routine was a pimped-out cha cha that really brought out Nicole's silly side. Derek's unconventional choreography can leave Len cold, but this time his creativity paid off. The routine was airtight from a technical perspective and so much fun.
Erin and Maks's second waltz of the season did the trick for the judges. They scored a 27 -- as opposed to a 23 for their blindfolded waltz in week three -- and high praise for the choreography of the routine and the fluidity of Erin's lines. Their second-round paso doble was their best showing ever: the dance was tight, fast and exciting. Erin's action-packed solo was a testament to how far she's come in this competition.
Who won the week: Nicole and Evan
Who needs to step it up: Erin
Lee DeWyze distances himself from Crystal Bowersox and Casey James
For the past few weeks, Crystal Bowersox and Lee DeWyze have seemed destined to face off in the season finale. And after Tuesday night's performance episode on "American Idol," that still very much looks to be the case. Fresh from their hometown visits this week, the top three singers hit the stage to perform two numbers: a song of their own choosing and one selected by the judges. Lee DeWyze wowed the judges with both performances, garnering the strongest praise from the panel and from the audience and proving to be the night's big winner. Crystal Bowersox was not far behind; she delivered two strong efforts of her own, but generated slightly less buzz.
Tuesday night's clear loser was Casey James, who was unable to muster any momentum for himself with two relatively safe performances and who received only polite comments from the judges. While the Texan has remained popular with many viewers, his onstage performances have continued to lack pizzazz, despite his front-man looks. It will be interesting to see if Casey's fan base can come through and help him buck the odds once more. Casey's fans have their work cut out for them. Given Simon's pointed comments Tuesday night, conventional wisdom suggests that it'll be Crystal and Lee who go toe to toe for the Season 9 crown next week. After all, whatever Simon wants, Simon usually gets.
For now, here's how the final three contestants fared (in the order that they appeared):
- Casey James started things off with "OK, It's Alright With Me" by Eric Hutchinson. Given the circumstances, you'd probably think that the Texan would have picked something a bit more recognizable. But instead, Casey picked this relatively less known tune that, nevertheless, showed off his guitar-heavy, rockin' sensibilities. While the vocals sounded good, the performance itself wasn't too exciting. The judges were uniformly nonplussed by the song choice. Randy remarked, "That song was just all right with me, too." He continued, "You can't do a safe song like that. It didn't quite work for me." Ellen wished that Casey would have "brought it." She explained, "It really needed to blow us away." Kara felt it was a bad decision to choose a song so under the radar, remarking, "That didn't work in your favor." And Simon said of the song choice, "If you were having dinner, that was the salad," adding that it had "no lasting effect on the audience." He declared, "I think that was a dud song choice."
- Crystal Bowersox served up "Come to My Window" by Melissa Etheridge, an artist to whom she's been frequently compared by "Idol" followers. As you might expect, the result was pretty darned good, though well short of sensational. Armed with her harmonica and her acoustic guitar, the single mother from Ohio demonstrated that she can rock out. But compared to her other performances this season, Crystal's vocals were a bit restrained; we have definitely heard her wail with more abandon in past episodes. It was, overall, a convincing rendition of a song (and artist) she admires. Randy commented, "I did not love the arrangement personally. But I love your vocal on it. It all worked in the end." Ellen thought it was a "good song choice," adding, "Melissa would be very proud of you." For Kara, too, the arrangement was less than ideal. "Acoustically, it would have been stronger," she remarked. "I think you got a little lost in the arrangement, but it was still a good vocal. I just hope you have a moment tonight." And Simon confessed, "This is not the most stunning version of the song we're ever going to hear." But he did say, "You haven't compromised yourself as an artist. I have a lot of respect for you for that."
- Lee DeWyze followed up with "Simple Man" by Lynyrd Skynyrd. There's nothing complicated or showy about the Illinois native's stagecraft. At its best, his singing is pure guts, full of raw emotion and mixed with a smattering of raspy-sounding notes. Lee's performance was one of his best (and surely a definite improvement over last week's universally panned "Kiss From a Rose"). There was no pitchiness this time around, just an ordinary Joe delivering some blue collar rock. Randy thought it was a "brilliant song choice." He shouted, "Somebody here is feeling like he can win this!" Ellen agreed, saying, "That's what we are talking about." Kara added, "You showed us everything you've got. Round 1 goes to Lee." And confirming the masterful performance, Simon declared, "That song was absolutely on the money. I think you just crushed the other two."
- Casey James returned to the stage to perform John Mayer's "Daughters," which was chosen by Kara and Randy. One of Casey's difficulties this year has been a lack of personality from behind the mic, so the choice of this particular song was curious, since it's such a sleepy anthem. Frankly, Casey didn't do anything terribly original with it, throwing down a pretty faithful rendition. The vocals, again, were pleasant to the ears, but the overall showmanship could have used some caffeine. Randy, predictably, liked the song choice, saying, "This fits you like a glove. I hope you continue in this direction." Ellen offered, "That was really good. I liked that a lot." Kara said, "This showed the more artistic side of you. I think you did a good job." And Simon felt this was a much better song choice than the first, but he added, "It was a bit of a lazy arrangement."
- Crystal Bowersox's second song was Paul McCartney's "Maybe I'm Amazed," chosen by Ellen. If Crystal's first performance of the night was a bit (by her standards) subdued, then this one was more the type of singing we've come to expect from this boho rocker. That is, Crystal delivered plenty of Janis-like vocal runs and showed impressive dynamic range, especially when she reached full voice near the end of the number. Randy was left to utter, "Great song. Great vocals." Clearly pleased with the performance, Ellen said, "I couldn't have asked for more. You did it." Kara noted, "You didn't change it up that much." But she did remark, "You showed parts of your voice that I don't think we'd heard until tonight. You did a lot of risky things tonight, and it paid off." Simon was a fan, too. "What you just proved is that you've got soul," he said. "You worked outside of your comfort zone. That was terrific."
- For his final song, Lee DeWyze sang Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah," chosen by Simon. If you'll recall, Tim Urban performed this during Top 16 week. Well, if Tim's version was good, Lee's rendition Tuesday night was simply terrific. Buttressed by a group of backing singers and a weighty gospel-tinged arrangement (thanks to Simon), Lee offered up his best vocals thus far, providing an inspiring finish to the episode. The passionate, showstopping performance displayed Lee at his most compelling and most confident on stage. There's no doubt about it: He's going to be one tough competitor next week. The judges were floored by the effort. Randy said, "That was unbelievable, dude." Ellen admitted, "There's really nothing more to be said: That was stunning." Kara remarked, "You are what this show is all about. You are the heart of this show this season. You just owned the entire night." And Simon was "really, really proud." He explained, "You proved that you are fantastic singer, a great person. I really hope for you that you make it there next week."
And now for the lists:
Round 1 winner: Lee DeWzye
Round 1 runner-up: Crystal Bowersox
Round 2 winner: Lee DeWyze
Round 2 runner-up: Crystal Bowersox
Pack your bags: Casey James
It's your turn now. What did you think of Tuesday night's performances?
The actress, singer and new mommy spills on making out with Matt Morrison and playing mommy (maybe?) on set and off
On Her Characters Perhaps Wicked Ways: "Of course I can't tell you! I'm bound and gagged -- they'd kill me. But I'll say this about [my character] Shelby, there's much more to her than meets the eye. Definitely more than what we've seen so far. You never know if she's just messing with Rachel to sabotoge the group. I don't think she's that evil. But we'll definitely see more layers to her."
On Looking Like Lea Michele: "It's flattering -- she's obviously a lot younger than me and she's very talented. We worked together once at this summer workshop. It was like acting summer camp for Broadway actors. There are all these crazy rumors about Shelby -- is she Rachel's birth mom? Is she Rachel's lesbian lover? I don't know. Guess you'll just have to watch and see."
On Making Out With Matt Morrison: "Was it fun? It wasn't not fun. It was my first scene on my first day, so it was an odd way to start the gig. But I have to say, I was really annoyed because I got a rash from his beard. It's not even a full on beard, but after we wrapped up the scene, my face broke out in this red, splotchy rash and I was so annoyed."
On "I Dreamed A Dream": "Lea and I sing the song on tonight's episode. That's all I can say about that! But I know it in my sleep -- I used to sing it back when I was a wedding singer. Nobody pays attention to the wedding singer, so when you actually get applause, you know you've got something special on your hands. And when I would sing that one, people actually stopped eating their salad or steak or whatever to applaud. So when Ryan said that was it, it was really funny."
On Being A Fan of "Glee": "Yeah, [my husband] Taye [Diggs] was involved in getting me on the show -- he kept talking it up. We're big fans. We were recording it every week, and we just kept talking about how cool it would have been if we had a show like that to look up to when we were younger. And I couldn't have asked for a more ideal mix -- comedy and music on TV? It's revolutionary, in its own way. So we were just so envious -- but really proud of it at the same time. Then Taye kept talking it up, and I put out feelers. I didn't really expect anything, and then a couple of weeks later -- maybe I guess Ryan was getting it on his end as well, and he called me in, and we had a meeting, and next thing you know I was on. So now of course Taye's jealous."
On Whether She'll Return Next Season: "Well, I don't get killed off or fall into a hole and disappear. But they do have a nice resolution to my storyline for now. If they did ask me back and it worked out with my schedule, I'd certainly love to do it. The show brings something fresh and different to TV and it deserves all the fanatic attention it's getting. And Ryan makes it really easy on me with the baby -- I wrap up all my stuff in one day a week! A new mommy couldn't ask for a better gig than that."
On Her Most Important Role: "Besides my tour -- which runs through the fall -- and 'Glee,' I'm just focused on being a good mommy to Walker. That's really what my days are about right now. I haven't been working all that much since he was born. 'Glee' is the first big thing I've taken on. I take him with me wherever I go, on the set we played in between takes. And for the tour -- I get to sing with the awesome symphonies across the country -- the baby and Taye are coming along, so it works out really well. But being a mom is more important to me right now, it's changed my perspective on things. Work used to be the be-all and end-all, and it's still important, but it's not the most important thing anymore. Family is."