Thursday night was full of surprises behind the scenes at "American Idol," most of all the undeniable flirting going on between Haley Reinhart and Casey Abrams.
So what's going on between those two crazy kids and what kind of reception did Pia Toscano get when she showed up to watch the show?
Spring is here and love is in the air. The "Idol" contestants have been living together for weeks now, so it's not a total surprise that romance has blossomed between two of the singing star hopefuls. We've heard a buzzing rumor that Haley and Casey are more than just friends, but tonight they weren't hiding their affection!
As judge Randy Jackson would say, they "slayed" their duet, but the happy smiles didn't last long when Haley was sent to the bottom three. After Kelly Clarkson performed, she openly admitted to crushing on Casey. However, after Kelly snapped pics with Randy, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler, Casey didn't hang out by the couch in hopes of snagging a hug and a smile. Instead he crossed the stage to Haley to give her a pep talk, and from the look on Casey's face it didn't look like just a friendly gesture.
Trying to keep things cool, they just gave each other a tight hand squeeze before Casey went back to the couch. After Paul McDonald and Stefano Langone joined Haley in the bottom three, the show cut to commercial, and then it was Haley who crossed the stage and made a beeline for Casey.
As the two chatted and laughed, Casey tried a few times to grab her hand and even attempted to get Haley to sit on his lap. When that didn't work, he reverted to touching her whenever he could and kept a steady eye on her as she talked with the other contestants with body language that pretty much said, "Hey look at me."
We gotta admit it was totally cute, and we could help but laugh a little at their thinly veiled attempt to cover up their crushing. If you don't believe us, maybe Casey's reaction to Haley being deemed safe would convince you. We thought his hands were going to go flying off his arms from the exuberance of his clapping, and the look of relief on his face doesn't lie; he really cares about her.
Speaking of elimination, last week's Idol eliminee, the shockingly booted Pia, sat next to the judge's table to support the remaining competitors. Randy had a mini freakout when he saw her. Pointing and saying, "You should be here, dawg!"
It seems Pia has settled into her new celebrity status, carrying a Louis Vuitton purse with a bodyguard by her side, looking every bit the part of a head turner. Audience members were getting up out of their chairs to get a glimpse, and show producer Nigel Lythgoe gave her a very warm welcome. She was smiling, chatting with her gal-pal and saying hello to fans. It seems like her elimination actually did her more good than if she stayed on the show.
Other tidbits you didn't see
After Scotty McCreery and Lauren Aliana performed the opening duet, he informed production that his ear piece wasn't working. We saw the judges have a picture sheet of all the contestants at the table. When Ryan Seacrest brought Lauren, Haley, Casey and Scotty to center stage, Jennifer pointed to a picture of whom she thought would be in the bottom three to Randy and he agreed. Too bad we didn't see who she pointed to! Postshow, James Durbin began crying on stage over the loss of Paul. It was totally endearing and made us love James even more! Rihanna looked stunning, but on her way backstage from the judges table, she had a near tumble down the stairs. Fortunately she caught herself and was able to get backstage without incident...Oh wait, she tripped one more time, but still didn't fall.
What do you think of Haley and Casey as a couple? Is there an Idol contestant you'd want to date? Who do you think should go home next week? Let us know in the comments!