Bhavin Dhanak. Meiyang Chang.

I’m sticking my neck out: the two guys named in the headline of this post will reach the final three of this year’s Indian Idol. The third will either be Emon Chatterjee—good singer but a bit kiddish—or Parleen Singh Gill, who I see as a dark horse. There will be no girls in the final three, as much because of the bias against girls in the last two seasons that I spoke about here, as because none of the girls this time seem to be a complete package. All the boys I named are likable, and sing well, and that’s the ticket.

However, they have the lottery of the next two rounds to get through first. Last night, three out of 12 girls were eliminated, and this evening three boys will get a ticket home. I think there’s a fair bit of luck involved at this stage, as the supporters of a good singer might feel complacent, and criticism of a bad singer might just propel that person’s supporters to vote furiously. I’m assuming that’s why the excellent Aisha Sayed got eliminated, and the much-criticised and mediocre Vartika Shukla stayed in the contest. If Indian Idol had the voting mechanism of Bigg Boss, and viewers had to vote to throw people out instead of to keep them in, the results would be different.