Who cares what Simon says? They all should've stuck around.
Kimberly came in seventh place in Season 2, but was it lucky No. 7? Well, the blonde cutie still hasn't released an album (a single came out this past December), but she has been a correspondent for Fox Sports and the TV Guide Channel. She may have broken ex-boyfriend David Cook's heart, but hey, at least she had the decency to appear in Wrong Turn 2. Yes...decency.
To see more of Kimberly in our gallery of Hot Reality TV Girls, click here.
Steve Carell was on to something in when he screamed out Kelly's name in The 40-Year-Old Virgin. Season 1's winner has had such surprising staying power, people have pretty much forgotten about From Justin to Kelly. And don't even try to pretend like you haven't pumped your fist (hopefully that's all) to "Since You've Been Gone."
For more of our Kelly coverage, click here.
Nadia Turner- Before coming in eighth place on the fourth season, Turner won a Miss Martin Luther King, Jr. pageant (not the Coretta Scott King pageant?) at 15 and sang at the 26th annual G8 summit in 2000 (Clinton was there). There's been no debut album as of yet, but she did have a single on an Edy's Ice Cream CD a few years back. We hope she was paid in that Girl Scout Cookie Thin Mint flavor.
Since we can't have "Straight Up"-era Paula Abdul as a judge, we'll gladly settle for Kara. She's an accomplished songwriter and producer with a zillion hits under her belt, and if that weren't impressive enough, she also has Christina Aguilera's number on speed dial. And wouldn't you know it, we have enough wine for three and a song idea...
To see Kara in action with Bikini Girl, click here.
Camile Velasco- A Season 3 finalist (Fantasia Barrino took top honors), this Filipino-American singer worked at her parents' IHOP restaurant in Hawaii before seeking stardom and turning heads. Inspired by hip-hop she seems set on following in the steps of Lauryn Hill. If she's aiming for relative obscurity, then ... success?
Mikalah Gordon- This Las Vegas native, 11th-place Season 4 finalist and Fran Drescher lookalike (we mean that in the best possible way!) went on to work as a correspondent for Tyra, appeared on CBS' The Unit, and as a contestant on CMT's Gone Country 2. We're sure at least one of those gigs wasn't super-annoying.
Lindsey Cardinale- Lindsey was the first finalist eliminated on the fourth season, demonstrating that "Knock on Wood" didn't do her much good. She's currently the model and spokesperson for the Bill Hood Auto Group in her native Louisiana, so we hope she at least got some free wheels outta this whole Idol experience.
Ryan Starr- Born Tiffany Ryan Montgomery, this Season 1 spitfire used her real name during the audition process but changed it when Paula Abdul became her mentor of sorts. The result? She didn't make it into the top six, being eliminated after a lackluster version of Donna Summer's "Last Dance." She went on to star on numerous reality shows, starting with a memorably teary, whiny turn on The Surreal Life. Even after achieving a great deal of success with the single "My Religion," she now pretty much just does charity work. When not crying.
The top runner-up on the fifth season (losing out to Taylor Hicks, ouch), Katharine has our eternal gratitude for letting Tyra Banks feel her up on what was one of the greatest moments in television history. Seriously, this whole Leno/Conan debacle had nothing on that. She'll next appear on Community as Chevy Chase's stepdaughter...hands off the goods, Joel McHale.
For more photos of Katharine, click here.
Ah, Carrie; you had us enthralled all the way up to your win on the fourth season of AI, and we're still trailing after you like a puppy. (Not literally; no need to contact the authorities.) With the fastest selling debut album in country music history, it's no wonder she just nabbed a People's Choice Award for favorite country artist.
To see photos of Carrie at the CMA Awards, click here.
The American Idol Twins-
Television - and the world - is a much better place with Becky and Jessie O'Donohue in it. Becky was a semifinalist in Season 5 (auditioning with Jessie in tow in Boston), and the sibs have gone to appear on Fear Factor and as sisters (what a stretch) in I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry and on a episode of ER. We'd like to thank Becky for appearing as a stripper on that House episode, too.
To see more photos of Becky and Jessie, click here.
Despite pacing sixth in the fifth season, Kellie's had a decent amount of success on the country charts. She claimed she wasn't exposed to a lot of pop-culture elements growing up, so we'd like to take this opportunity to extend our invitation to watch Wild Things at our place.
To see where Kellie ranks in on list of Hottest Women in Country Music, click here.
A classic beauty made even hotter by her tattoos, Megan came in ninth place on last year's Season 8. Certainly one of the series' most memorable lookers, the divorced single mom was able to impress the judges with a rendition of Patsy Cline's "Walkin' After Midnight" while battling the flu. And though she's currently working with Good Charlotte's Benji Madden, we won't hold that against her.
To see where Megan ranks on our list of the Hottest Girls of American Idol Season 8, click here.
Katrina Darrell (Bikini Girl)-
The greatest Idol audition ever? Quite possibly. Darrell, a former Hooters girl, tried out for Season 8 in her beach wear. She didn't make it to the finals, but appeared on the season finale in a vocal throwdown with judge Kara DioGuardi. Kara even tore open her shirt in a battle of the stomachs. We seem to recall some singing involved, as well.
Kristy Lee Cook-
Kristy came in seventh place on the seventh season (the one where David Cook was the big winner), but she won our hearts belting out sap-tastic Journey and Lee Greenwood tunes (you gotta love a girl who chooses "God Bless the U.S.A." for the "Year They Were Born" theme night). Oh, and there was a faux sex scandal as well, involving her stripping for a webcam. Turns out it wasn't her, which is a shame, really.
To see where Kristy ranks on our list of the Hottest Women in Country Music, click here.
Christina Christian- Claudia made it to the top six of Season 1, but belting out Peggy Lee's "The Glory of Love" on Big Band Night proved to be her undoing. But really, no one wins when you're forced to sing big-band tunes.