Friday, May 27, 2011

866 American Idol Season Ten

866 American Idol Season Ten

With wobbly ratings and Simon Cowell’s withdrawal from Idol, you’d think they’d pack it in after the tenth season. No such luck. They suffered a big spike in viewership late in the season. This provoked a season eleven.

The fond hope is that they find three new judges. Steven Tyler brought nothing to the table but his Mick Jagger looks. Tyler without Aerosmith is like a corned beef on white with mayo.

Randy Jackson’s act is getting real tired. He’s the only genuine musician on the panel and the only original left standing. But he’s become a parody of himself. Is there anyone out there who isn’t sick to death of “Yo, yo yo!” and “ it to win it?”

Jennifer Lopez doesn’t warrant comment, which itself is a comment.

The tabloids are saying host Ryan Seacrest wants to put on his own show and will give up his $15 million contract to start a production company. Seacrest apparently believes he’s a latter-day Dick Clark and is bigger than Idol. Let’s hope he does that. His act also is getting tired. Plus without Cowell, he has no one with whom there’s dramatic tension, and without that, he’s dull, dull, dull.

Trouble is, guys who think they’re bigger than the show, whatever the show is, generally fall on their butts along with their “Next Big Thing.” (David Caruso learned that the hard way when he got “too big” for “NYPD Blue,” but had enough talent to climb back to the top. Seacrest is just another “Roy Radio” style disc jockey who won’t make it back if he actually jumps ship.)

The real interest in the show this season probably came from the eventual winner, Scotty McCreery of North Carolina. McCreery is probably the most talented performer in the ten past seasons. He has a huge bass baritone voice, doesn’t scream when he sings, sings country songs with tunes you can hum and words you can understand. Gorgeous. Humble. Deserving of stardom. Every bit as good as any of today’s country megastars and better than most. And 17 years old, yet! Beat the screaming chubby blondes the bookies usually predict as winners, the screechy boys who want to be the next Steven Tyler and the Janice Joplin wannabes who get votes because they have great legs and show ‘em well.

Runner up Lauren Alaina, 16, chubby blonde favorite of the bookies was on Leno the following night, and sang beautifully. Maybe there were two winners this year.

Note to Fox: speed it up. The show drags. Get judges who are both qualified and interesting. And give the director a raise -- that’s tougher live TV than a hockey game.


--Next year, they’re going to cover the American Idol voting the same way they cover a presidential election, with states, precincts and the like all set up and maps and tally projections. Each of the networks will have their biggest stars at anchor desks, analysts in Washington, “the heartland” and at their “world headquarters.” Can’t wait for the victory and concession speeches that follow.

I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2011

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