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  • Warning: Spoilers
    Far too much of this show is pathetic. From the cheap looking stage to the under choreographed numbers to the sugary judges, this show frequently misses the mark. But there are some fine singers. Most of them have the pipes, it's just control that they lack, a good singer knows when to not use their powerful voice. Sometimes, in some numbers, you can see what the show was intended to be, a display of top talent fighting for break. The high note for me is the unflinching honesty of Simon Cowell. While Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul spent too much time glad handing decent performances, but Simon keeps his emotions in check, trying to dispense advice. Too often he is put down by window dresser Ryan Secrest for not having fun. It's refreshing to listen to someone try to honestly dissect a performance and for those who think he is too harsh, a lot of people will be telling these contestants that they aren't good enough, it's time for them move past their natural talent and grow thicker skin. The greatest performers have a work ethic to match their talent, that is what should be idolized.
  • I've watched every episode of this show from its inception, and, sadly but not surprisingly, I have seen it become more and more cheesy as the years go by.

    For starters, Seacrest has to go. If you look up the word smarmy in the dictionary, you will see his picture. And the judges are all a joke at this point - they've become caricatures of themselves, it seems, and nothing they have to say means anything, nor do the viewers' votes actually count, since I believe the producers of the show will not have someone win whom they do not approve of (meaning someone they can't control). The contestants are still good, though, which is why I still watch: I'm a sucker for a talent show and I do love seeing someone do really well, as Jordin is doing this year. And let's face it, the show is an incredible spectacle - the modern equivalent of, say, the gladiators in the Colosseum.

    Last night, they kicked off the "Idol Gives Back" thing, where, for every vote cast, ten cents would be donated by the shows' sponsors - Ford, Coca Cola, and A T & T - toward the world's hunger crisis. Seacrest stood there, in all his sanctimonious smarminess, preaching to us about how we were not just voting this week, we're "saving lives." I'm all for ending hunger in all countries of the world, beginning with our country, don't get me wrong, but this to me feels like a very underhanded and sleazy way to obtain more publicity for the show.

    The corporations in question have enough money to fully end all world hunger if they wanted; they do not need our votes to contribute to that cause. And it would be a tax write-off for them, to boot. By telling people they are "saving lives" by voting, the producers of the show (and Seacrest, as their shamelessly pathetic talking head - he's like Max Headroom without the soul) are implying that the opposite is true, as well: if you don't vote, you are NOT saving lives.

    About the show itself: the worst thing is how they never let the contestants sing a whole song, they have to condense their song into a minute and a half, and then they get criticized for not having enough feeling or enough conviction or enough personality, blah blah blah. A song has to be complete in order for it to legitimately 'live' - the emotion or feeling of it has to build and you cannot genuinely do that when you're forced to cut out most of it. They have time on the show for all sorts of crap, but they can't make time for the performers to actually SING. I commend anyone who can come on week after week and manage to give a credible performance under these conditions, something the judges don't seem to acknowledge or appreciate.

    Where will it all end? I predict a few more seasons, and then hopefully the network will take the show off before it deteriorates into an even tackier circus than it's already become.

    Added 3/6/13 ~ This season hopefully will be the last. Brutal.

    Added 2/21/14 ~ Still going' on. It's a joke at this point; everybody feels it. Keith Urban, J-Lo and Harry Connick Jr. are very strange judges, not much credibility there, and of course Seacrest is still on board, still smarmy as ever. This time the question is : WHEN will it all end? I couldn't even watch the preliminary episodes this year, the whole selection process and the Hollywood thing, the group challenge, blah blah blah. Cannot stand how they play with the contestants' heads, when they call them in to That Room, making them walk from the elevator all the way to their desk in Outer Mongolia, only to torture them with the 'well, you know we can't pick everyone and we're really sorry, we don't know how to tell you this...(long dramatic pause)...but you're going through!" Pathetic.
  • The basic premise behind American Idol, a talent show in which a large number of contestants battle it out to get a recording contract, is one that has inspired a number of films and television shows. The problem is that the idea is one rooted firmly in the 1960s, when the Recording Industry Assocation of America was relevant, people's tastes were so underdeveloped that one genre would capture most of the world's attention, and the so-called top ten actually reflected what people were buying. But the revelations of the past twenty or so years have turned that entire notion on its head. No longer do we believe that the top ten is actually a reflection of our tastes (in fact many articles have been published to the effect that the pop charts are rigged), and the RIAA no longer has sole control over how we hear artists. In fact, independent, underground recording labels have seen their business explode tenfold since the MP3 revolution, and for the first time in history, the advertising of recording artists has truly become a level playing field.

    All of this translates into increasing irrelevance for talent quests like American Idol. Much of the commentary I hear about the show revolves around the three judges, who are in essence the real stars. Do not look at them, however, they are not the reason the show is entirely irrelevant. In fact, they are about the only connection the show really has to the present-day market for music. Paula Abdul reflects the overly optimistic approach that many of the RIAA's marketeers suffer from, Randy Jackson highlights the irrelevance, and Simon Cowell repeats exactly what the more intelligent section of the buying public is thinking. Indeed, for all the complaints about Cowell's cruelty, he is about the only thing worth watching the show for because of his unflinching ability to slap hopefuls in the face with reality. To quote his comments to William Hung, you cannot sing, you cannot dance, so what do you want us to say? Ironically, aside from one contestant, Hung has achieved far more recognition and fame due to his uncynical, earnest attitude than anyone else who has appeared on the show.

    Which brings me to the contestants themselves. To partly quote Alexei Sayle, I might be stupid like, but I happen to know that butchering the material of other people is never going to give a fair indication of how much ability an artist has. Although Kelly Clarkson's post-Idol material is irrelevant to me, it also demonstrates she has enjoyed the most success of the lot because she can create something of her own. Covers of top-forty filler songs that were not even relevant to the audience back then will prove very little. Even the selection of songs is so tepid as to be monotonous. Once you have heard one talentless pretty face cover Whitney Houston, you have heard them all. At least on the versus albums released by the black metal underground, they challenged each other to cover each other's songs, as well as songs by an artist that they would otherwise not normally play, such as GGFH or Frank Zappa. Even something as straightforward as Glenn Danzig would baffle the imagination-challenged idiots of Idol.

    The scary thing is that after nine out of ten finalists fail to get so much as a mention after their term on the show is over, the powers behind it still want to blame piracy for ailing record sales. They fail to understand something that the independents and underground long ago incorporated into their market strategy. You see, as much as I disparage the Beatles or their ilk for being the original boy bands, they made it big when they did because at that time, nobody had heard anything like them. They had the right combination of novelty and semi-solid songwriting that also propelled bands like Black Sabbath or Bathory to notoriety. Kelly Clarkson, Justin Gaurini, and everyone that has followed after them, just have nothing to offer that is exceptional or unique. Twenty-five years ago, when radio fare was not nearly so narrow or limited, acts like Devo created a stir because they pushed envelopes. Funk-punk, electronica, and punk-pop had observers that were of the same age then as Cowell is now asking what was next.

    So when I say that the present crop of pop musicians that shows like Idol attempt to promote as if they are the hottest thing since tofu are little more than a damp squib, I want you to understand my full meaning. As I stated differently in my comments about Metallicrap's recent aping of Spinal Tap, the world has moved on from this kind of thing. Maybe it is time that Simon Fuller and his cronies realised this, because I am kind of certain that Simon Cowell and to a lesser extent Paula Abdul have realised it. Indeed, as I sit here listening to Danzig, a man who has more creativity in his fingernails than every single contestant who has been on every iteration of Idol worldwide would have in their collective bodies, I find something is quite rotten in the state of the music industry. While I wish Clarkson the best in her efforts to exploit the fame that Idol brought her, I really just wish these people would raise their bar concurrently with the way the ears of the wider world have raised theirs. At the very least, we could get Red Symons of Skyhooks fame to judge a few shows. With him and Cowell on the same panel, contestants might spontaneously combust from the ego-checks.

    American Idol is a two out of ten show. Nobody on the show save Cowell seems to know a thing.
  • No doubt there are some really talented singers such as David Cook, Chris Daughtry and Kelly Clarkson, but others were ludicrously bad. Then there were others with annoying personalities, Tatiana I am looking at you. However, while I was addicted to it at first mainly because of the hilarious auditions, I stopped watching it after it became increasingly formulaic, tired and predictable.

    Simon's put downs no longer became funny, instead they became increasingly insulting, and Paula became increasingly inaudible over the screaming audience. The choreography was often under-rehearsed, the singers sometimes pick the wrong songs for their voice(a huge danger when it comes to singing), the lighting was dim, the clothes that some contestants wear either in auditions(ie. Bikini Girl and the guy in the Pink Rabbit suit) or on the live shows(ie. Carly) are either too revealing or unflattering and I am not a fan of Ryan Seacrest's presenting. Also the show is very exploitative, I know the X Factor is quite exploitative, but this brings the meaning of exploitation to a whole new level. It is not entirely the show's fault though, the media are mostly to blame too. Then there are those who don't make it through Hollywood or the live shows, they cry and say that American Idol is their life. Give me a break, I am not trying to sound insensitive, but there are many many good things you can do with your life other than go on American Idol, if you really want to sing, join a pop band, a musical theatre or opera group, you may find they are better in terms of time value.

    Overall, formulaic, tired and predictable, not to mention exploitative. 2/10 for the auditions. Bethany Cox
  • This is the worst of the worst of competition shows. The whole format & everything is all wrong. Like with the group round..........which is totally stupid unless your original audition was as a group then every contestant there is praying and hoping to win and make their big break as an individual, not a group. The Voice does it best with the battle rounds with only two contestants up singing together. There is nothing fair towards or for the contestants at all on American Idol. There is a reason The Voice has been voted and rated the number one competition show on television the last however many years in a row. American Idol is unfair towards all its contestants and American Idol is stupid and sucks.
  • blimeystone5 January 2019
    The new super short format sucks. It gives zero time for the audience to fall in love with the singers. Fix it.
  • There comes a time in every reasonable man's life when he must sit down in his living room and watch an episode of American Idol. Truth is I'm not a reasonable man. Or even a reasonable woman, now that I think about it. I have, however, watched an episode of American Idol and will go so far as to say that I have religiously watched three seasons of it. First season was great. Second season was good. During third season, I got wiser and realized that the show wasn't as good anymore, but still I watched. It had lost its magic, its X-Factor, you could say. During fourth season, I watched four or five episodes. By then, I had rediscovered sitcom television. Now comes fifth season, and the inevitable disappointment that lurks around the show reappears again. Yet, people still watch the show because they are too brainwashed not to.

    Then again, what else is there to watch on Tuesdays? Or Wednesdays. Or Thursdays. Or any other night of the week, for that matter. I mean, why watch anything else when I can watch the new season or reruns of past performances made readily available via my Handy-Dandy DVD player? (Yes, we bought the Best of Season One. So sue me.) I must say that American Idol has become predictable. A "dude, man, dawg" from Randy Jackson. An "I just want to eat you up and make all our viewers sick to their stomachs with my infinite well of gaga comments" from Paula Abdul. And "Enter sarcastic, British remark here" from Simon Cowell. Cue Ryan Seacrest's idiotic retort and make-the-girls-swoon smile. The contestants are the same: air-headed bimbos, wannabe rockers, real rockers, melt-the-camera-with-a-stare heartthrobs, belters, and the like. For goodness sake, give us something good to watch again! Every now and then we get fantastic singers like Kelly Clarkson, Tamira Grey, and Clay Aiken. The rest are a little more or less than mediocre. Come to think of it, I can't remember the last time I heard Ruben, Fantasia, or Diana on the radio. Don't even mention Justin Guarini. What a waste of his perfectly good talent. The only thing Idol can do for you is give you a year, if that, of fame, then send you on back home to the karaoke bars in Oneida, Tennessee. Tough break, kids.

    It is just unfair to see what they do to these contestants. They get the same amount of men as they do women to avoid any legal problems about gender bias. Completely bogus! Sometimes, there are better men than some of the women on that show (and vice versa), so why should they be cut just so the Idol producers won't be accused of discrimination on the cover of tabloids. The real crime is letting a bunch of less-than-worthy singers get on just to balance things out. And then some of the singers get scolded for song choices. Oh, no, Heaven forbid someone does a Mariah or a Whitney! No, no! Those are untouchable. I just have my fingers crossed that one contestant will finally lash out at Randy, saying, "Well, Mr. Jackson, you give me a list of songs I'm not supposed to do, and I'll make sure I sing them all just for you." Even if they are really good, nothing is as good as the original, so just give up.

    The producers of Idol need to take a step back from the show they've created and look at what it has become: a rigged popularity contest. The only thing Idol is good for is delaying House episodes for weeks at a time. What a waste of an Emmy and Golden Globe winning show. Producers, you need some variety in this show. Just keep your fingers crossed that you choose the correct Idol this time, as you seem to think that America is too intellectually inept to do so themselves. Greenlighting this overstayed-it's-welcomed show for another season and thinking that the same people are still going to love it would be optimistic to the point of foolishness. But then again, what do I know? I'm just a kid with a television and a telephone.
  • It is wholly inexplicable and mystifying that a nation could be so obsessed with a show like this, a worthless, fifteen-minutes-of-fame, trashy-so-it's-bad piece of garbage that captivates more collective attention than the average Presidential race. Constantly, I am forced to hide in my room when this show comes on because it overrides all other shows where I live. With paper-thin walls, I can hear every minute of it: the generic pop voices, the horrible auditions at the beginning of every season that throw pathos out the window, and the growing absurdity of the judge's sweetness, complacency, and ruthlessness. It is by far a more rewarding experience to watch unintelligent programs mock this show than it is to watch it itself-- "Shrek 2," anyone? And "American Idol Rewind," a vapid expansion of the show's early years, is even more heinous and pointless. Yet people continue to watch the competition, from talentless winners (Kelly Clarkson, Clay Aiken, Taylor Hicks, etc.) to unique, worthwhile losers (Daughtry!) But guess what. Even Chris Daughtry hates it when people mention his appearance on this show. Because it is, in its own, Idol way, a puerile, infantile, mindless and banal exercise in finding the next unlikely hero to throw through the ruthless pop culture gum-ball machine. A word of advice to the people who actually tune in every January: go and watch the classic 1981 movie musical "Shock Treatment." Once you see its town overwhelmed to Orwellian proportions by TV shows like this, you will see the error of your remote-controlled ways.
  • Shows like this are the reason that so much of television sucks these days. It is nothing more than an over-hyped, overblown televised karaoke contest and people watch this crap in droves. I've totally lost all faith in humanity for allowing a show like this to go on and on and on.Years ago, a show like this (think 'Star Search' for example) was the exception rather than the norm. Now it's all you can find. Reality programming has completely ruined TV. Granted, there's still some pretty decent scripted shows on the tube (Monk, 30 Rock, My Name is Earl, The Office) but as long as people line up mindlessly to watch muck like 'American Idol', I'm afraid it's only gonna get worse. I weep for the future.
  • Luke sometimes thinks for himself, Lionel always votes with katy. So basically no matter how bad you are, if katy likes you, you'll get on. Likewise, no matter how good you are, if katy doesn't like you, you don't get on. If they want a show that really looks at talent and isn't just about identity politics, get rid of katy.
  • irishninja19805 January 2007
    It's sad that so many talented, hard-working musicians out there have been busting their ass for years and can't get a break, while any soulless, talentless suburban poser can go on what is basically a nationally-televised karaoke contest, become the flavor of the month, and then be forgotten about six months later(unless you're Kelly Clarkson). I know it's already been said by another poster, but it's true: some of these people have played in small bands or had local solo gigs, some of them have potential, but the majority of them are a bunch of wannabes with no real talent. They don't have the dedication and desire it takes to build a lasting career in a notoriously fickle industry: they're in it for their 15 minutes of fame, and nothing more.
  • I've had really little interest or even a great liking for this show. I did laugh hysterically at the first few seasons of horrible singers that auditioned but after that, I didn't care about the show or it's contest at all.

    Reason being is, in my opinion, even though a selected number of these performers "do" have the talent and many with very good voices... I don't feel this is a legitimate way of trying to "hit the big time."

    What, "really" have most of these singers done to earn or deserve to be famous? Some of them have have been in school chorus or maybe even done a localized solo career / band maybe. They are ametuers and the judges way of practically slamming for their inexperience turns my stomach.

    Especially when singers try to do songs before their time. Nine out of ten times, I feel no emotional connection with their renditions of classic pop & rock songs. In my view,they don't have the proper emotional connection to the songs or understand their meaning.

    Making their performance seem empty. After a few years of it, it was nothing short of redundant.

    I don't mind what others here call the contestant's "sob stories" , as they are legitimate and great difficulties they have experienced in their lives. (No doubt anyone in charge at the show has these things checked out, beofre alowing them to tell the story. )

    I doubt it has any bearing on the judges decision, it's just the contestants telling about themselves. They win for singing , not for being the most pitiful.

    I will say, Kelly clarkson still stands out to me as the most talented and I was glad to see her become more than just anohter female who sings about love, break ups or power ballads like, "A Moment Like This."

    I've been a bit more than suspicous in the past watching winners after her, just 'fly' immediately up the Billboard Hot 1200 or even debut at the top suddenly and then fall and become immediately forgotten (except Carrie Undrwood, who's the only other that's truly lasted.)

    Still, even her debut at #1 that knock Mariah Carey out of the top for a wek back in 2005, seemed fixed, although I know Billboard magzine would get invesigted if that werre the case.

    Anyhow, as for the judges? Cowell is no longer there and was horribly mean at times and other judges ranked from understanding to almost as bad as Cowell. I know they want to be honest with these hopefuls but , lighten up.

    Imagine, when Cowell ws still there. A young girl, self-conscious about herself already and he makes her feel 10 times worse about herself and her weight. He's changed since then and is on America's Got Talent.

    Anyhow, the show by now has become quite repetitive and not even the bad singers could make me tune in again. It's a shadow of it's former self. I enjoyed it for awhile, for the things I mentioned but not anymore, I've moved on.

    I'm surprised that America hasn't moved on from this. (END.)
  • I can only watch this show for about 3 minutes. I remember, back in the day, going to battle of the bands, and what I am watch is a televising version of the latter. I must be getting old say back in the day. The entertainment is similar to the bar bands grade B. OK but I can not watch a full hour of the show. Another rendition of Star Search! There is some humor in the show; and people love to watch others bomb or go down in flames. I believe we love to watch people burn for it makes us not feel so bad about ourselves. When others stink we feel good knowing we could do better or the same. I just find the show too much hype. Simon could use a chill pill. 3 out of 10 Simon. Simon what are you doing? I guess Simon must know people for Simon's made a lot of money of Idol.
  • MrGroovilicious2 June 2016
    Won't say who it was out of respect for their privacy, but a friend of mine went to audition for this atrocity to television.

    They didn't even let this person audition. They filmed everything up to the top 20 on the same day and made it look real. When everyone comes for the audition, they actually mean they're going to decide who will actually audition. They will randomly tell people they can go just because they look funny and think it would be hilarious to see on TV, and don't let other people go because they look to ordinary or they don't look TV material. Then they let some of the people they chose sing for 5 seconds, and if that 5 seconds doesn't please them they don't get to audition with the judges and move on. This happened with my friend.

    This is INSULTING. Many artists would feel privileged to have the opportunity to express their paintbrush for the world to see. This "opportunity" was a broken promise, never intending to be fulfilled in the first place.

    Not to mention, the show just wasn't interesting.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I started watching American Idol when it first premiered, fortunately, I stopped after the tryouts were done. Once the competition itself begins, there's nothing that makes it intriguing, funny, or suspenseful.

    The judges are a good trio of people. Paula is the judge people would look for when it's down to a sympathy vote. Randy Jackson can be, too, but he tends to have a different taste than his two counterparts. Simon is the best, simply because he does not BS anyone, and his criticisms are true, even if they do come off as harsh.

    Well, that's all there is to say about American Idol that is positive. Other than the judges and the tryouts, there is nothing that garners this multiple viewings, and I am quite shocked at the phenomenon it has become. None of the songs are the contestants' own, just the voice -- so what makes them an artist?

    I highly advise anyone who is on the fence about watching this show, to stay on it. Unless your into the tryouts, skip this.
  • Movie-ManDan12 February 2015
    American Idol has gotten a lot of hate since it it began. Why? What's so bad about it? It started in the early 2000s when you needed talent to make it big and your image was changed alone. It was singing talent scouts that people may never have gotten the chance to ever encounter. A time to make a dream a reality.

    It started off with brutally honest British judge, Simon Cowell; hip and cool former Journey drummer, Randy Jackson; and former pop diva and dancer, Paula Abdul. It was funny to see Simon trash everybody, Paula praise everybody and Randy be chilling. Ryan Seacrest has always been a great host. Superstars were made and fantastic singers emerged.

    But things got a turn for the worse when Paula decided to depart. Ignorant judges were coming in that shouldn't be there like Ellen Degenerous. Simon's farewell seemed to be the beginning of a new chapter. Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez joined Randy on the judging table. That was Idol's best year as there was not one bad contestant. Just as things were getting hot, the show declined to the point where I was sure it would never recover. Keith Urban, Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey replaced Tyler and Lopez for the worst year. Minaj and Carey had no idea what they were doing and they ruined the show.

    All was saved when J-Lo returned to replace Minaj and Carey and Harry Connick Jr. replaced Randy. Now we have three talented judges that know their stuff. Idol is now the show it used to be.
  • The judges have become so transparent, I have seen some horrible singers get rave reviews from the judges, it has become clear that all of this is staged ahead of time. I expect this from perry and bryan but never expected it from Richie. Also the name needs to be changed from American idol to anyone idol as people come from all over the world to participate.
  • Sure the show pulls high ratings, provokes fevered discussion and might even be fun for its viewers. They've assembled a tight trio of judges with good natured rapport and enough of a comprehensive critical eye to weed through the shallow, fame-craving riff-raff . . . however . . . I am here to bury Idol, not to praise it! At most the show is a guilty pleasure, as hollowly insubstantial as it is trite. It's best fit as passive, ultimately forgettable recreation for a preadolescent audience with no other life concern except perhaps their schoolwork. The final irony is that all of the "American Idols" picked by the judges and the viewers, with the possible exception of Carrie Underwood, have sooner or later vanished from the formerly adoring public eye that created them! Despite this repeated repudiation of its mere existence, the ungainly behemoth that is American Idol nonetheless slouches towards us each seasonal cycle, waiting to be born anew in all its false idolatric 'splendor' . . .
  • Warning: Spoilers
    For this review, the word "formula" will be a recurring theme.

    I didn't start watching American Idol when it first came out, but rather during season 4 or 5. Whichever one came before the Taylor person won.

    The show started with a formula: hold contests where average people sing pop music for three judges and the ones who sing best compete over who can sing better, ultimately decided by popular sovereignty. There's the Nice judge who loves everyone and chooses everyone to go through, the Mean judge who hates everyone and chooses everyone to fail, unless they sing good, and the Nice judge who occasionally goes in between.

    I was shocked to see that the series only had a 4.9 out of 10 rating on IMDb as of January 2010. Some of the complaints I see regard individual episodes or individual seasons or a generic indictment of reality TV in general.

    American Idol has had a formula for a long time in the audition stage, where performances are heavily edited, and entire clip segments are made of people's sudden successes or failures. The only ones given a full showing are the ones that are noteworthy for their success or failure.

    The biggest problem and part of the biggest downfall is this formula has remained unchanged for years. It gets to a point where you know EXACTLY who will go through to the next round and who will not. The most clear indication: Those who will go through are typical normal, average, usually pretty people, and almost always have some sort of horror story, like "I beat cancer", "My son has autism", "My mom died in a car accident", "I'm a hemophiliac", "My sister raped me", whatever.

    Meanwhile, the ones who will clearly NOT go through are given either no video package, or a thoroughly derisive, mocking one complete with light-hearted, dopey music, and copious sound effects.

    In fact, I absolutely cannot fault the series for its vocal preferences---the heavy metal singer or the opera singer will not go through because this is NOT a general singing competition. It's a search for a pop singer. It's not clear from the title or subtitle, but the style, the subject matter, nearly ten years of showing, it's a POP STAR COMPETITION.

    Despite that, there are very rare instances where a serious bias is shown. Sure, they don't reject people for being fat or ugly, though the people who go through are very rarely fat or ugly, and very rarely are they in any way UNIQUE. Everyone sounds exactly the same at some point. Maybe it's just the human vocal chords, or the style or genre of pop music, but the people with unique voices are either undisplayed, or outright rejected. The only examples that come to mind immediately are a fat girl who sang a gorgeous rendition of the theme to The Phantom of the Opera, but she was flat-out rejected because her style "wasn't right". She looked like a Hot Topic shopper, and her voice was operatic, but this is a POP STAR COMPETITION. Still, "The Phantom of the Opera" isn't a real opera, so to speak---she could very well still go through the competition, an American Idol in the style of Andrea Bocelli.

    It's gotten so formulaic that there's no longer any reason to watch the first 1/3rd of the season for anything other than entertainment---you watch it for the same reason you watch "To Catch a Predator" or "Candid Camera" or Borat or Da Ali G Show---you have a sick urge to see people fail spectacularly, or make asses of themselves in some way.

    No one cares about the talented people anymore. The show picks and chooses only the prettiest, most plain, ordinary, generic, and commercial contestants can win---are even DISPLAYED, as there are dozens of people who make it up to the second and third rounds without EVER seeing camera time beyond split-second cameos.

    Indeed, there's many people who watch it and care about these generic hacks for the music, but look back and name me American Idol winners. There's Clay Aiken or so... Kelly something, Justin Guarini, Fantasia, Taylor Hicks, and I literally can't remember anyone else.

    Now, name me an American Idol winner who was SUCCESSFUL even today. That is, WINNER, not CONTESTANT WHO WAS ELIMINATED. Ruben Studdard, Katharine McPhee, etcetera.

    Every year, the show gets more and more predictable, and the contestants get more and more bland, ordinary, and boring.

    It's been a steady state of entropy for the show, and considering how awful the contestants have been as of late, them being too damn CHEAP to keep Paula Abdul was an executive move of just plain bad judgment. And now Simon Cowell is leaving after this season.

    The show is over, or getting close to it.
  • kmustain3624 February 2010
    I enjoyed the show in the first couple of seasons and enjoyed some of the products that came from this show. But, it is time for this show to go away. I know I have an unpopular view, but I am sick and tired of 3 days of programming being taken up for this seemingly endless parade of over inflated egos and a line up of people whom I never want to see on TV ever again. Not to mention the relentless beating of the dead horse with Idol Rewind and the hours spent on showcasing the worst of the worst in American Karaoke. There has to be a better way for these kids to be discovered and/or rejected than taking up our time and patience. Please go quietly into that good night and don't look back. I think the American public is ready for scripted dramas and comedies again.
  • This is the first year (2005)that I've watched American Idol. I surprised myself and enjoyed it. It provides a look into the process and reasons for signing a person to a contract. The only thing that I don't like is the final weeks and how they let people know who has not made the cut. I find it cruel and unnecessary. I also find that Simon Crowell's comments are pretty accurate about the contestants. I used to watch Star Search, with Ed McMahon, and thought that was great, but this is much more interesting. I would like to see the handling of cutting contestants changed. I don't find this to be a popularity contest at all. I also think that if these people cannot take the criticism that is handed to them they should not be in the entertainment business.
  • This show is a reality show at heart. Thousands of people audition in front of three judges, the infamous (yet truthful. People, if they're bad singers, don't blame him!) Simon, Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul. They're mostly given the boot but some pass and go through many elimination rounds until we, the viewers, get to vote and slowly one-by-one toss out the final ten until we get one American Idol.

    The first episodes are definitely the ones that spark its' popularity. As an exchange for a free contract deal, FOX is allowed to videotape and broadcast anyone they want.

    This is the 5, 000+ auditioning stage. With so many people of so many cities, we've got to find at least a dozen people who think they can sing. I'm talking about the bad ones. Emphasize on THINK.

    It's sad when they say they've always had a singing dream and are awful. But it's hilarious when people outburst because they now THOUGHT (or still think) they can sing. One guy on a recent season 2 episode thought he deserved to be the American Idol 'cause he thought he could sing and he stood out 5 days in the cold. Too bad he sounded like a bird being strangled.

    There was another one of the same episode who said he had a dream(so far sad) of being a singer. He sings, and puts way too much into it(he's trying to sound like Enrique Glasias", and is turned down(still sad). He's OK, though, and walks out with a smile(right now confusing). He then walks out and proclaims to everyone he's going to Hollywood(the next round)(a little funny). About an audition later, the camera finds him sitting waiting for an audition. He explains to the security guard with the cameraman he's been invited back(now funny). As this never happens, the security guard doesn't hesitate to correct him and boots him out(kinda funny). He yells while leaving(the security guard lets him walk out himself) "I'll see you all in Hollywood!".(funny)

    One last one, a girl couldn't believe they said she was just under average, good only hidden in a crowd of a choir. She denies being turned down, and when the host(with proof) asks her didn't she get refused Hollywood, she states she doesn't know, and tries to get back in to find out. One thing: she's a terrible liar. For ratings, she's allowed back in. Simon asks her hadn't they already seen her. She clearly wants a second chance, but strangely tries to start with (maybe the host was there) "I wanted to know if I'm going to Hollywood". "No, because you're terrible.". And it ends.

    The second round is OK, as the crowd of about 200 is brought down to 30. The people who don't make it get a chance to speak out.

    After that, we start voting, while the judges provide their thoughts. In a clearly planned move, you take away the bad singers now, and wind up with audience interaction. It's not the same, but you still see one vote and wonder how many people are trying to mess it all up by purposely trying to wind up with a bad singer winning.

    I really enjoy the first parts more. But it's truly speechless. You have to see it to believe it.
  • American Idol, amounts to the same old same old talent show, repackaged and fancied up for your viewing entertainment. Oh yes, and the audience does get to phone in and cast their vote, which probably accounts for much of the popularity of this weekly song fest.

    American Idol travels the country holding tryouts for tens of thousands idol wannabe's in several major cities through out the U.S. Contestants have been known to wait in line for days in hopes to get their big break. It is never made clear how some of these people are chosen to audition. The producers seem to want a mix of the very awful, the just OK, and the very good. The really awful ones are meant to entertain us in the preliminary rounds so that we can ridicule them along with the judges. Of all these early contestants, only 119 were picked to go to Hollywood to try and become one of the chosen 32. We are led to believe that these 119 are hand picked by the judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, and Randy Jackson. However, it is never made clear to us whether these judges sat and watched every single one of the tryouts, or how much input the producer of the show has into who makes it and who doesn't.

    Once in Hollywood, the final 119 are given several tasks to perform in order to show their worthiness of becoming one of the 32 finalists. It was at this point that I began to smell a rat. First off, these tasks were not only unfair, but there was little logic in assigning them. For instance, each contestant was given a list of song subjects. From this list they had to choose on item, write a song about it and perform it the next day. Since there is no requirement that you have to be able to write a song to be an Idol, the task didn't make much sense to me. Sensing that most of America was probably as puzzled as I was, the host Ryan Secrest, explained it wasn't important as to whether or not the song was any good, it was to see how each contestant did under pressure. That would have been acceptable but when it came time to perform, the comments of the judges had little or nothing to do with that aspect of it. For instance, one contestant had written some rather clever lyrics and performed them quite well. She was able to do this whereas many contestants couldn't even remember the words to the songs they had written. Yet, Simon criticized her by asking her if she wanted to be a comedienne or a singer. The contestant seemed to be as taken aback as I was. How good the song was or what the song was about was not supposed to be an issued. She had performed well under pressure but it didn't matter. So much for fairness in this round.

    The next task that each contestant had to get with two other contestants and perform a song together. This didn't make a whole lot of sense either and seemed even more ridiculous than the songwriting contest. If a contestant happened to get paired with two other good singers it made them look good. However, there were several unlucky good singers who were paired with mediocre contestants who refused to even practice.

    When the 32 are picked we are given no reasons or criteria as to how they were judged. The girl Simon called a clown was history, although she had performed admirably at every phase. In her last appearance when she performed solo, she toned down her vivaciousness and performed an outstanding number. After she was finished, Simon, who had earlier asked her if she wanted to be a comedienne or a singer, now called her boring. Go figure. Two brothers who had also performed with mediocrity throughout the Hollywood auditions also made the final 32. There were other numerous unexplained choices, too many to even begin to pick apart here. Again we are not told if the three judges had the final say so or whether the shows producers or whoever had input into the decision.

    The contestant the judges have heaped the most praise on has always moved on. The second contestant that has moved on has been kind of like a roll of the dice, there is never any certainty about it. Call me a cynic if you will, but I find it strange that the phone-in votes has always agreed with the judges on their first choice. You would think that at some point just by figuring the odds that this wouldn't happen every week. It can only lead one to two possible conclusions: 1. Either the American viewing public is a race of sheep unable to decide for themselves who they think is best or 2. There's some monkey business going on with the voting on this show. Neither choice is very palatable, especially when you consider some of the decisions made by the judges.

    There are some other hard fast rules to remember about American Idol. First, never sing a slow song if you can get around it. No matter how good you are or how good you may sing, it is the kiss of death. You will be called either boring, a lounge singer, a café singer, or someone who is unwilling to take chances. Second, despite what I said above, never take chances or be original. These judges frown on it. One singer who took a chance on a jazz number was quickly banished because it wasn't the type of song the judges were looking for. That she sang and performed well didn't matter. Third, when you get to the end of your song, sing very very loud, and hold your last note as long as you can. These are sure fire audience pleaser's and the judges eat it up. Proof of this can be found in each of the contestants that the judges have lavished their highest praises on in the first three weeks of season three.

    There is plenty more wrong with this show, and I could write a thousand more words about it. All I can say is tune in, have an open mind, and ask some questions about legitimacy. Somebody should.

    My Grade F
  • I have been an avid "American Idol" fan since its inception. I loved that Kelly Clarkson won the first one. I thought Clay Aiken should have won the second one (statistically he and Reuben were virtually tied, and the winner was probably a artifact of the phone voting limitations). While I think highly of Reuben, as a singer he simply isn't good enough to sustain a career with it. And, during the third season, even though I initially didn't care for Fantasia's style of singing, I eventually came on board and thought she was a worthy winner. So that tells me American voters get it right ... eventually.

    "American Idol" is the only reality show I watch. I have always had a fascination with great singers. I am a competent singer, but could never have made it as a featured artist. So, to see these young women and young men letting it all hang out, singing from their souls, gives me chills. Some of them are unbelievably good.

    This year is almost over, with 5 contestants left as of last night (May 3, 2005). There has been controversy, but one of them will emerge as the winner and have their first dream fulfilled, the beginning of a professional singing career. Where it goes from there depends on how good they really are. Making a living as a singer is a tough business, there are so many good ones.

    (As an aside, my good friend and neighbor Larry had a chance meeting with Simon Cowell last fall, at a grocery store in London. They spoke a minute, Larry found Simon to be very pleasant and congenial, not at all like the persona he adopts on the show.)
  • I can't believe that people willfully watch this show. It's such a waste of time watching people embarrass themselves on national television. Shows like this one are the reason why America is full of morons and the reason why the Chinese and Japanese are going to own this country in the coming decades. The only reason shows like this are even on t.v. is the fact that corporate television executives are so greedy that instead of making t.v. shows that at the very least give a wholesome message or bring awareness to the public about a certain issues they look for any way to squeeze every penny they can and stick it in their own pockets instead of spending it on something worthwhile or educational. Don't watch shows like this. Read a book instead. Spend time with your kids. Get an education. Do something worthwhile with your life.
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