Last night's episode of 'American Idol' highlighted the final auditions before the top 40 contestants face-off in Hollywood next week.

The show was a bit extra to say the least with a return of a former judge, unforgettable contestants and religious experiences. You thought this would be another run of the mill episode, well you're wrong. General auditions ended with a bang.

The night kicked off with Missouri's own Karl Skinner, who came out swinging, singing James Brown's 'I Feel Good.' You knew he'd be a problem when he said, "I'm gonna prove that Gingers have soul now," and that's what the redhead did.

After turning to an original song with his guitar, Skinner had Nicki Minaj's full support. He even had her putting Ryan Seacrest's job up for grabs. "I can see him doing something like what Ryan Seacrest does," the rapping judge stated. The panel agreed after hearing the soulful redhead give the Seacrest catchphrase, "This is 'American Idol," which caused Seacrest himself to come into the room, possibly feeling his job was threatened.

Virginia's very own Nate Tow may not seem like a traditional 'Idol' candidate, coming from a household with two deaf parents, but the young man made his mark, especially with Mariah Carey. Tow made a nice pick in choosing Stevie Wonder's 'For Once in My Life' for his audition -- Stevie is Mariah's favorite artist. The singer "really enjoyed it," saying "Great song, and I thought you did a really nice rendition. Really nice, beautiful voice," before sending him to Hollywood to compete for a spot in the top 40.

Things got even more extra when we saw the return of former 'Idol' judge Steven Tyler, who was dressed in drag as a contestant named Pepper. Nicki and Mariah loved it, especially the latter, who joked, "This dude look like a lady." Sadly, he didn't get the golden ticket to move on to Hollywood. Maybe next year 'Pepper'.

The star of the night had to be Zoanette Johnson aka “Big Crazy Barb,” rightfully named by the leading barb herself, Nicki Minaj. Zoanette was a special candidate indeed, bringing her own sense of style in singing the National Anthem.

Despite forgetting some of the words, Zoanette brought the house down with her sheer sense of crazy, even causing Keith Urban to fall out of his seat. Randy wasn't 100 percent on the wave, but gave her points, calling her "a whole party all by [herself]." This is one contestant we'll be sure to look for in Hollywood.

Nicki and Mariah are still playing nice, but who knows how long that will last. We'll be keeping a watchful eye on these two as the show continues.

Watch 'American Idol' Season 12, Episode 6