If you’re an “American Idol” contestant, and you’re backstage on elimination night, and there are only two other contestants with you, and Ryan Seacrest calls your name to come to the stage to announce whether you’re in the bottom three for the week, you have to know you’re safe. “Idol” always go for the drama with those last two, so there’s no reason for you to look all worried and upset — you’re going to be safe for another week, guaranteed.

After seven seasons of this formula, how do they not know this already?

Then again, this is a show whose viewers are keeping boring cute-boy Jason Castro (this year’s John Stevens) and instantly-forgettable Kristy Lee Cook alive, but sending home Chikezie, who was getting better every week and can really sing. The judges keep talking about taking chances and being original, but the fans go for bland pablum-spewers rather than those who take risks.