Friday, May 10, 2013

Is American Idol becoming Idle?


Yo, Dawg, say it isn’t so!

The ratings have been dropping, the judges have been fighting, the tweaking has been disastrous, and the talent this year, amazing! 

This... is, or was, American Idol.

When success begins to slip away, the magic starts to fade, and your competition is winning, some say time to wrap it up American Idol, but let’s not forget what a well-oiled machine this show has been since 2002.

Auditioning for American Idol
As a fan of the show and of music, I am bonafide when it comes to giving my solutions to the problem. Will they work? Has anything lately?

The reality television show has produced superstars where they were none before.

However, now tens of thousands of delusional singers think they have what it takes to fulfill a dream of musical super-stardom.

Idol did more than give a stage to rising musical wannabes; it allowed us, the viewer, a peek at the journey, from conception to fulfillment. We were there when the young singer auditioned, filled with hope, cheered for the contestant as they snagged a golden ticket which took him or her to Hollywood where all dreams come true! Oops, correction, that’s Disney World!

We got to see the transformation of Average Joe singer as he begins to dress cooler, the hair more done up, and the confidence build. Live performances before millions and millions of people gave exposure like no record company could.

Yes, stars were born. KellyClarkson and Carrie Underwood became ultimate superstars, while winning the show proved helpful, an extremely successful career did not depend on victory such as Jennifer Hudson and Daughtry.

American Idol birthed the stars, while talent kept them on their journey.

The bumps began when Simon Cowell left, his British accent, tight tees and rude comments gave the audience someone they loved to boo! Yet, many confess they agreed with him more than not. He had the ability to say things that most of us would not ever say, even though we may have thought it! 

Like all Soap operas and Wrestling, you must have a good villain.

However, being unlikable simply does not make a good villain. The AI producers seem to miss this point.

The focus of the show became less about the talent, the story, the journey and more about the judges.

When the formula is changed and the public don’t like it, you can keep mixing new ingredients or you can go back to the original. 

I have two words for you... Classic Coke

Beware when some smart guy thinks he needs to fix what ain’t broken!

True fans have stuck with the show, such as myself, even when Season 12 began and many die-hards were giving up. 

The comments on blogs and social media were filled with negative outrage, whining, and complaining, mainly directed at Nicki Minaj. At first I will confess, she rubbed me the wrong way too, but then she grew on me. 

Keith Urban, country superstar and dreamy eye-candy, has been the best judge this season using his expertise, compassion, and ability to communicate.

So can Idol go back to what made the show work?

Three judges.

THREE judges, not oober-famous Celebs, or those looking for a jumpstart in their own careers; but like in the beginning: one cool judge, one critical judge, and one with a heart but all must have enough experience for street cred.

Focus on the stories of kids trying to make it. Tug our heartstrings! Make us cry! Laugh! And bond.

But, I feel the powers that be will try to re-invent the wheel. Or, they will try to borrow the recipe of the competitors from the other singing shows.

Folks have been saying, “We can lose American Idol. There are plenty of singing contests out there to fill the gap.”

I have tried to watch the others. They are not bad shows, but they are not AI either. The X-Factor, I barely made it through half a season; the Voice, so far I haven’t made it past the battle rounds, until this year. I do like the chemistry of their superstar judges, but I couldn't tell you one contestant’s name or much about them. I can’t name a winner of past shows, but I can name you all the past and present judges.

America’s Got Talent was a hit in our family for a few seasons, even though it mostly came down to a singer.

Will American Idol try something new? Something...not done in reality contest shows? 

Why not take my suggestion and add a reality twist, such as add a judge who is ‘real’, a fan who represents the main audience of the show, (females that are not too young and not too old.) 
Oh, that would be…ME! Yes, I can save the show and it wouldn't even cost them double digits in the million dollar department.

I like the concept of nobodies becoming somebodies! That is the secret for success!

Add the extra entertainment value of seeing delusional people thinking they can sing, called out on their lack of talent and I am so watching! Why? Because I can’t do that.

How many times at church have you lied through your teeth telling some person that you enjoyed their solo?

My eldest son Zach, has a good voice, no delusions!
Bad singers have always been around but it is Karaoke we must blame for empowering them. American Idol just gave them a platform to do it nationally, and to give a reality check to some bad parenting. 


Never support your child’s bad talents!



If I were young enough, I too would stand in long lines with

thousands of contestants, to audition, hope and dream for a lottery ticket to stardom.

My shining American Idol moment.
Thanks to Disney’s American Idol experience, I got to fulfill the dream even if it was on a small scale. I auditioned for American Idol. I made it to the live show and was able to perform “Last Dance” by Donna Summers. I was judged. I was able to stick my fingers in the air to vote for number 2. 

I also got voted off.

Yet, for a moment, I was an American Idol contestant. I was able to sing on stage. My young twin boys got the chance to see their mom shine! According to them, I was great!

 I think I won after all.
My voting public.....three out of four sons!
Should American Idol producers change the show more to try to fix all the problems to bring back the ratings? Maybe they should listen to their audience’s suggestions?  Or, will the show become American Idle and slowly fade into rerun history.

No matter, stars can be born the old-fashion way, through sweat, talent, and luck.




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