American Idol: Results Shocker!!
Not kidding! I just ran from the sofa in my living room to the chair at my computer desk. I MUST BLOG NOW!! I have been overtaken by a blog frenzy! I am FURIOUS with the latest result on American Idol and feel compelled to share my thoughts about this show and what MUST BE done to repair its credibility. Yes, American Idol has given us some terrific talent. Kelly Clarkson completely deserved to win Season One. She was, by far, the most talented vocalist from the premiere season. Carrie Underwood completely deserved to win Season Four. Her success is indisputable. But I have said this before . . . if Kelly competed today, if Carrie competed today . . . neither would stand a chance of winning. And here’s why . . .
The American Idol voting process has been overrun by teenage girls. The various methods of voting (phone, text, Facebook) cater to that particular segment of the population. Look! I am huge fan of this show, but I don’t have the time to text, phone in or Facebook dozens and dozens of votes for my favorite contestants. I just don’t have that kind of time or, quite frankly, the desire. In fact, I daresay, that most adults I know don’t have that kind of time or commitment to the cause.
Consequently, we have to live through SHOCKING results shows like Thursday night’s, when Pia Toscano, one of the best singers in the history of the show (and I’ve watched every season and that is no lie), was voted off. Am I really supposed to believe that Paul McDonald earned more votes than Pia. Or better yet? Did Stefano get more votes than Pia? Actually, I am sure he did. I am sure Paul did too. Because teenage girls across the US were casting the majority of votes.
Recent seasons of American Idol have illustrated the growing problem with the show’s voting procedures. Two seasons ago, Kris Allen won the title and hardly deserved it. But he won because teenage girls thought he was cute. But guess what? Their love affair with Kris ended at the finale, because those same girls who voted for Kris (because he was dreamy) forgot they were supposed to buy his CD after they crowned him Idol king.
Last season, the worst Idol season in my opinion, the same exact thing happened. Crystal Bowersox was the stand-out talent without a question. But Lee DeWyze won the title. Why? Because teenage girls controlled the vote. I joked on my Facebook status that it’s time to grab the tear gas and call the National Guard because an uprising is taking place on American Idol. But that uprising has now seized control of the democracy and is now a full-fledged dictatorship. Teenage girls completely control this show and, despite the fact that the judges declared this the Year of the Girls, a female contestant, even one as viable and marketable as Pia, has NO chance of winning.
So, what do we, America? After all, this is supposed to be OUR show. We are supposed to have a vote in what happens and ultimately help decide who becomes our appointed Idol. I think the only solution is to take some of the “democratic” element out of the mix. This idea/formula has worked wonders on multiple seasons of Dancing With The Stars! On that show, the public vote counts for 50%. The other 50% of the vote is determined by the scores of the judges, the experts! (That’s a simplified description of how it really works, but you get the point. Plus, they LIMIT votes per household!) And, in each season of Dancing, the best dancer has typically gone on to win the Disco Ball Trophy. Isn’t that the way it should be? Shouldn’t the best man . . . or woman . . . win?
I think so, but a woman will NEVER win American Idol again. This year’s results are proof of how slanted the voting has become. Remember, we started out with a Top 13 this season. There were 7 girls and 6 guys. As of the latest results show, there are STILL 6 guys and only 2 girls left. And, remember, this is the show, that after Season 3, revamped its format to even the playing field, because the girls were slaughtering the guys. Remember Season 3, when Fantasia won?? The remaining 4 contestants were all female. However, those days are gone! In fact, there’s only be one female in the final in the last three seasons of the show.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I have no problem with a guy winning this show if a guy truly deserves to win. I am a huge James Durbin fan and am pulling for him this season. I think that kid rocks the house. But when guys like Kris Allen and Lee DeWyze win, the show’s credibility gets undermined. When someone like Pia Toscano finishes 9th, the show’s credibility gets undermined. American Idol is supposed to produce IDOLS! The show is supposed to give music its next big thing, its next superstar. And we haven’t gotten a true superstar since Season 4, when a charming, blonde gal from Oklahoma won the crown and became the reigning queen of country music. The Idol days of Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson are long gone!
Make no mistake. When Simon Cowell’s X Factor debuts this fall, he is going to load it up with talent and make darn sure that a viable act wins the crown. He has too. Simon knows that the only real way to beat Idol is to have X Factor produce a bigger star. Simon can do it and will. Idol hasn’t produced a BIG star since Season 4. Sorry, David Cook. Sorry Kris Allen. SUPER sorry Lee DeWyze. It’s not your fault you won. But, come to think of it, it’s not ours either.
Yes, the time is NOW for American Idol to go back to the drawing board. In many ways, this season has rejuvenated a franchise which was on the brink of destruction. Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler have injected new life into the judges’ panel. Randy Jackson is actually articulate for a change. Someone has finally convinced Ryan that he is NOT Dr. Drew! There are so many positive changes in this season that I am again a fan of the show. But Thursday’s result has me worried that Idol hasn’t corrected its biggest problem of all. This show, this season, MUST PRODUCE AN IDOL! It cannot afford another posterboy pin-up that will be forgotten as soon as his last text-messaged vote is counted.