To me the entire premise has become stale and the injustices perpetrated by the fan voting system seemed to come to a head last season when talented, versatile Crystal Bowersox was beaten by the likeable, but mundane Lee Dewyze.
Still, in spite of my reservations, I’ve given the current season a try, and … Okay, I’ll just go ahead and say it.
American Idol is dull this year.
It’s particularly so without Simon Cowell.
Simon … the judge everyone loved to hate. Well, love him or hate him, the show is just not the same without Simon.
Randy Jackson, the lone holdover from the original judging crew is still around and like a familiar record, he can be depended on to say basically the same things every time. If you didn’t know before that “pitchy” was actually a word, or that people could be “dogs” or that the term “Yo!, yo! … ” was an acceptable way to begin a conversation, you just haven’t been watching AI the past few years.
This year Randy was alone in his role as veteran AI judge, but he was joined by a couple of talented musical performers in Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez.
Fans like me didn’t particularly know what to expect from either one of the newbies, but my feeling was that one or the other would certainly fill the bill as the caustic, sarcastic, hyper-critical, member of the panel. Which one would be the new Simon? Because the show was lost without a reasonable facsimile of Simon … right?
I’ll answer for you. RIGHT!!
Unfortunately, while both Tyler and Lopez have impeccable credentials to be judges, neither seems to want to take the bull by the horns and kick some contestant butt when the need arises.
Lopez is willing to occasionally give out some reasonably harsh constructive criticism but in the end, she comes off as merely a more assertive and fortunately much more coherent Paula Abdul.
And Aerosmith bad-boy rocker Steven Tyler is an absolute wimp! He loves everything and everyone. Who would have guessed it?
So, anyway, for the whole season up to this point, practically every performance has rated no lower than perhaps a “C-” in the eyes of the current judges. Admittedly, there seem to be no real super-stars among the contestants this year, just as there seems to be no obvious loser either.
Everyone is just “okay”.
Maybe this is what is driving the panel of judges to be so hesitant to really “Simon-ize” a contestant when the occasion calls for it … and even occasionally when it was not particularly called for.
Honestly, the contestants as a group and the performances as a whole have been so middle-of-the-road and frankly boring week after week that I can understand why the judges might have been lulled into stupor.
Although nobody is particularly bad, there is no one on the stage this year who would have stood a chance of making the finals in the much more competitive years recently. Every week it’s like a tie for 10th place!
Zzzzzzzzzz! What a snooze-fest!
Oh, to have Simon Cowell back just one night as a guest to light a fire underneath this lot.
Maybe the performances would improve, maybe not.
But, at least the show wouldn’t be boring.