Thursday’s American Idol yielded a bit of a surprise to viewers (spoiler ahead) as the latest contestant to go home was, rather shockingly, Angie Miller. Miller rose to the level of a favorite in the competition early on, when she performed an original song on the piano in the show’s Hollywood rounds. She quickly became an audience favorite and the judges loved her as well. However, while she kept receiving praise for most of her performaces, Angela (who quickly became “Angie” to both judges and fans, never quite matched the success of that first big performance). Now, the two finalists, who will press on have been decided – Kree Harrison and Candice Glover. Their fate will be decided during the two-part finale on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Meanwhile, as tensions run high onstage, behind the scenes everything is just as hectic, as the departure of the audience’s favorite judge, Randy Jackson, has been made official. The official story is that 56-year-old Jackson is leaving the show to focus on his record label and other business opportunities, but with rumors swirling about the network planning a complete overhaul on Idol, lots of sources are speculating that his departure might not have been entirely Jackson’s idea. In any case, with falling ratings and Fox’s apparent anxiety over the show, we can probably expect a brave new Idol as of next season.

Randy Jackson, American Idol Season 12 Premiere
The producer/bassist, who has been on Idol since Day 1, has confirmed his departure.