Katy Perry doing the worm was Ryan Seacrest‘s “most meme-able moment” from “American Idol” Season 17, the host revealed during Sunday’s finale. In case you haven’t seen Katy’s viral worm moves, which took place in the March 10 audition episode, hurry and skip ahead to the 1:47 minute mark in the video above.
“Jake, you were great, and that’s why I felt the freedom to be my true self on that dance floor,” Katy told “Idol” hopeful Jake Puliti after surprising everyone by breaking out the worm during his performance of Montell Jordan‘s “This Is How We Do It.” An out-of-breath Katy exclaimed to fellow judges Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan, “My lower backs hurts!” That’s when Luke deadpanned, “Yeah, ’cause you just did the worm.”
After her wild dance moves, Katy confessed, “I didn’t know if I could still do the worm. I blew a button out on my pants. But I’m always breaking something … records!” The two male judges and the 20-year-old Pennsylvania shoe store employee all burst out laughing at Katy’s perfectly timed joke. Jake earned three “yes” votes from the judges so he advanced to the next round, but he was later cut during Hollywood week.
To celebrate Katy doing the worm, “American Idol” invited Montell Jordan to perform — what else? — “This Is How We Do It” during the Season 17 finale. The R&B singer was accompanied by four Katy Perry-lookalike backup worm dancers who were wearing the same “Lionel Richie” T-shirts and blue jeans that Katy wore during the viral moment.
Marjie Mays (aka “Burping Girl“) and Austin Michael Robinson (aka “Lasso Boy”) also popped up during the fun performance. Alas, Katy didn’t break out the worm live on television, but she did give Montell a finger-gun salute while chomping on a bag Fritos.
During the three-hour finale show, pop singer Madison VanDenburg received the least number of votes and came in third place. Musician Alejandro Aranda was named the runner-up while country singer Laine Hardy earned the title of “American Idol” 2019.