Many people have labeled the smiling and embarassingly humble David Archuleta as American Idol 7’s dark horse to win. What these people don’t seem to realize is that he is the front runner. Front runners can’t be dark horses. Furthermore, David Archuleta and the word “dark” can hardly be used in the same sentence without a negation somewhere.
Danny Noriega, on the other hand, plays perfectly as a dark horse, perhaps not to go all the way to the end, but to last much longer than people expect him to. VoteForTheWorst.com has already started encouraging votes for Danny, labeling him as this season’s Sanjaya Malakar. We all know how well Sanjaya did after bombing performances week after week.
However, I think that Danny has the upper hand against Sanjaya. Though “Jailhouse Rock” didn’t show off his vocal skills, his previous auditions proved he has a voice with way more potential than Sanjaya ever had. He also has the bonus of being memorable for reasons other than just his hair. His remarks to the judges felt much more like amused banter than the result of spitfire attitude that some have labeled to him. In that way he’s oddly likable, albeit in a completely different way than David.
Personalities aside, David and Danny are alarmingly similar. Their names have similar rings to them and the same distributions of syllables: David Archuleta, Danny Noriega. They both auditioned in San Diego. They both have green eyes, dark brown hair, thin body frames, and somewhat childish faces. They are only a year apart in age.
It should be fairly obvious by now what I’m driving at. They are clearly the same person, separated into two halves: the light and the dark. David Archuleta has the smooth voice, the ever-smiling face, the innocent reactions to praise, and the vote of probably every pre-teen girl across the country. Danny, the “evil” twin, has the solid voice, the witty remarks, the audacity to retort to Simon, and probably the most femininity of the ten guys left.
I suppose this all makes David the “light horse” to win the competition, and perhaps rightfully so. It’s interesting to wonder what would have happened had someone with the un-separated personalities of Danny and David auditioned for American Idol, some Davy Archiega. It’s possible he would have been rejected for being far too normal. Year after year, we’ve seen the judges go for the polar opposites, the ones who stand out among the rest, not just with their voices, but with their personalities as well. Against all the odds, we managed to get two polar opposites of the same person in the same season, and both of them will go far.