Meat Loaf, Braxton and Hasselhoff among the lowlights

5/25/2006 3:50 PM PDT

Meat Loaf, Braxton and Hasselhoff among the lowlights

Last night's 'American Idol' season finale did more than crown a new winner and attract one of the biggest audiences in TV history. It also produced some of prime time's most awkward moments.

TMZ has some of the lowlights.


While other top 12 'Idols' performed with such amazing acts as Live, Al Jarreau and Burt Bacharach, McPhee got stuck with Meat Loaf. It's hard to imagine when producers asked the contestants who their own personal idols were, the words Meat and Loaf were uttered by Katharine.

Meat brought a dirty-old-man combination of Broadway and geriatrics to the performance, while Kat was left to fend for herself as Mr. Loaf and his hankie chased her around the stage.


The song 'In The Ghetto' was sung at one time by a guy named Elvis Presley. Ms. Braxton should look it up.

Her performance of the song left many viewers wondering if she knew any of the words. At points, when she was supposed to be singing, she would dip her head down, and riff, covering up the lack of lyrics.

Hopefully this wasn't a preview of what fans can expect from the diva when she takes up residency at the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas.


It was weird enough that Aiken gained all that weight and is slowly transforming himself into the fifth Beatle.

But the trainwreck here was his duet with pre-'Idol' Clay look-a-like Michael Standecki. The poor kid was floored by Aiken's appearance on stage. Clay seemed to be annoyed when the duet failed to turn into a solo act. So instead of just turning off Standecki's microphone, Seacrest gently pulls him aside to take a seat on stage. Someone should have told him he was but a mere pawn in the 'Idol' game.


The performance by Prince was especially surprising, given that the singer reportedly hates the show.

The funny moment here was when Ryan Seacrest was introducing Prince, who literally arrived, jumped out of the car, and made his way onstage in true diva fashion. Ryan was forced to kill time while Prince made his way to the stage, resulting in an intro that seemed to go on... and on... and on.

Prince sang and was out the door and back on his way.


Finally, our favorite audience scan came at the end of the show.

McPhee, Seacrest and Hicks are front and center waiting for the results. The suspense is killing us. Seacrest announces the winner, and the audience, in unison, pops to its feet. We see Taylor's family and friends looking oh so proud. Cut back to Taylor, who's in the midst of an epileptic reaction.

Then it happens. The camera cuts back and zooms in on ... David Hasselhoff. The man is clearly overcome with emotion and crying.

We're not altogether convinced that his tears were in response to Hicks' crowning. Our guess is that either his divorce is finally settled, or he's so excited that he has just signed on to be a judge on Simon Cowell's next big show, 'America's Got Talent'.

    American Idol backstage

Related link
    'American Idol' on TMZ