Some miscellaneous thoughts:

I am SOOOOO glad I have a DVR.

The amount of banal banter, fluff, and advertising has increased every year. Using the show for the self-promotion of Paula and Randy's single was as low as I've seen. Next, we will probably hear Simon's new British diva, Leona Lewis, so he can collect his producer royalties from her sales.

I really don't know if I'd be such a fan of the show if I couldn't fast-forward through about a 1/3 of it each week. I skip the commercials and the Q&A period - at least.

Several polls are now ranking David Cook ("Cookie") higher than "Archie". Even Jason has the #1 spot in several polls. There's no clear winner yet. However, it would be surprising if a gal wins this year.

Here's a link to a site that lists several AI polls kind of a collection of polls: