American Idol: Michelle Sussett, 22, Was "Living Hopeless In Venezuela"

Lionel Richie

Lionel Richie

Sunday night's "Idol" broadcast delivered ABC's biggest premiere ratings in the time slot since the supernatural drama "Resurrection" bowed to 13.9 million viewers and a 3.8 in the demo back in March 2014.

Also off to Hollywood are Maddie Poppe, 19, who plucks her guitar while reinterpreting Kermit's Muppet Movie classic "Rainbow Connection", and Ron Bultongez, 21, who hails from Plano, Texas by way of the Congo in Africa. But Richie said that Seacrest is still the anchor that holds the show together.

Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan on "American Idol". Her original song, "Never Stop", which was, in fact, one sentence, "The devil never stops coming after you", was delivered with such powerful ferocity that it overpowered the panel. "You are the reason I am here, '" Lorenzo recalled later.

In past seasons, judges like Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban related how they never saw the preview profiles of contestants that viewers see, and often, only learned the back stories and struggles of the hopefuls through the weeks of the honing process.

The teen college student performed a rendition of Rihanna's "Stay", but before he took to the piano, he said "wig" to Katy Perry, much to the befuddlement of the other judges.

Perry, Richie and Bryan just stared at 26-year-old Koby, who bragged about her musical theater abilities and then had an atrocious audition. Luke is utterly confused at this odd and foreign terminology. Luke adds, "You're so easy on the ears".

The judges also give three yeses - along with some cautionary advice - to 16-year-old Kentucky cutie, Layla Spring, who brings her 7-year-old sister along to the audition. Sock-obsessed Zack auditions in NY.

Autumn Wood, 27, Katy, TX: The library clerk came in dolled up in what Katy described as "glamazon" style, but her version of "Total Eclipse of the Heart" was freakish: She sounded like Cher with a bad cold. He left Waterford and moved out to California at the age of 24. At its Season 5 peak, "Idol" averaged a staggering 30.5 million viewers and a 12.5 in the demo, which translates to a now unthinkable 16.3 million adults 18 to 49. And it seems just like not-so-old times.