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American Idol Boys Score With Mariah

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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THE EMANCIPATION OF MAMMARIES Carey (Photo: Getty Images) Perhaps the most surprising performance of Tuesday's American Idol was the down-to-earth appearance of Mariah Carey. With nary an ounce of diva or crazylady behavior in sight, nor an appearance by is-he-or-isn't-he paramour Nick Cannon, Mimi had lots of sweet smiles and compliments for the remaining seven contestants. And of course tremendous amounts of cleavage. Some things, thankfully, can always be relied on.

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Host Ryan Seacrest opened the show with the question lingering on many people's minds: When most contestants are criticized for taking on a Mariah Carey song because of her inimitable voice, how would any of them do on a night dedicated exclusively to her songbook? Judge Randy Jackson said the answer was in not trying to sound like Mariah but in contestants being themselves. Some delivered in spades, and others stumbled embarrassingly.

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