Friday, March 27, 2009


Okay...I admit it...I'm an American Idol junkie! There I've said it. I didn't actually become interested in AI until the finale of Season 2 where the showdown between Clay Aiken & Ruben Studdard took place. I don't know, I have never been very interested in reality tv. It has always seemed to me to be anything but. However, after hearing all the talk about the awesome singer from NC, I figured I'd better tune in to see what all the hype was about. And from then on I have been hooked.

But is it me or does Season 8 seem a little over the top? I've read & heard all the various conspiracy theories from season's past regarding everything from the contestants to how they were voted off. This year I've tuned in like I have in year's past & usually by this stage in the competition I have a really good feeling about the show. This year I am just not getting that. I feel like something is missing.

Undoubtedly I believe this year has some of the best overall talent on the show of all past years combined. There are so many likable contestants. And yet, the show almost seems for me a bit boring. Maybe it is the fact that I simply don't have a favorite as of yet. I know being from NC I should be pulling for Anoop right? I do like Anoop & he's a great singer, but there is just something about the fact that he isn't a true American (regardless of whether or not he was born & bred here, he ultimately is another nationality...his parents come from another country) that doesn't fit the ideal model to the be AI winner when all is said & done. It's kinda like having Sanjaya in the mix a couple of season's ago. I don't understand why AI allows those from other nationalities to try out no matter if they are American citizens. I mean the show is called American Idol after all. (But that's another blog post for another day.)

The show just bothers me this year. So why do I watch you ask? Well, it has kinda become a tradition to watch the show & like so many others, I just have to watch to see what is going to happen next. But so far, I've been more irked at some of the outcomes than I have been happy. And it goes without saying that more than ever before, I am convinced that AI is rigged. I mean, really, how do we know that the votes each week truly count or are the determining factor as to who stays & who gets booted. It's no secret that the judges have a tremendous amount of pull on swaying voters towards their personal favorites.

Let's start with new "Judges Save" rule that has been implemented into the competition this year. And let's also begin with Alexis Grace. I think most folks were shocked to learn she was not only in the bottom 3 last week, but the very one who received the lowest number of votes & was sent home packing after the judges decided not to use their "Judges Save" to well, save her. I really tried to assess how she could have gotten booted off so early in the season. I mean I agree her song choice was not the best one for her. I could almost have seen her doing a bang-up job of "Fancy" by Reba McEntire. I think she would have kicked butt after the previous weeks' performance during Michael Jackson week with "Dirty Diana".

But for me it did leave me questioning why she was let go so early. I had heard the speculation earlier in the week about an AI staffer 'leaking' to the press who the judges Top 4 picks were. Alexis Grace was among the 4. So why didn't they save her? Was it to refute the rumors & show viewers that the show was not, in fact rigged? Or was it that she simply was not the best of the best? I highly doubt it was the latter. It was a no brainer that they would not use their "Judges Save" so early on in the competition so ultimately viewers knew Alexis Grace's fate when all was said & done.

Now let's talk about this week. I was short of being appalled when I saw Matt Giraud in the bottom 3. What??? I couldn't believe it. He nailed that Marvin Gaye tune, made Smokey Robinson proud, & kicked off the show in ways that hadn't been done before. Let's not forget the guy has got an awesome voice. But with all that, he is being overlooked or perhaps overshadowed by some of the other more prominent talents in the competition. He is definitely one of the judges favs, although apparently not a fan fav.

Again, this lends itself to the show being rigged. Even if Matt Giraud doesn't have the legion of fans that Adam Lambert or some of the others have, I think it can safely be assumed that he would not have been one of the chosen bottom 3 for this week. My bottom 3 picks were Michael Sarver, Megan Joy & Scott Macintyre. So what if Matt had been the one who had the lowest number of votes? I wonder if the judges would have used their "Judges Save"? The outcome was so predictable. Matt was returned to safety & Michael got the boot. Given the scenario I knew the judges would not use the 'save' as a means to save Michael Sarver.

Let's move on to Adam Lambert. Never before in all my years of watching the show have I disliked a front-runner more. Usually the front-runner is an overwhelming fan favorite early on & it stays that way until the end of the season. But I just don't get what the hype over Adam Lambert is all about. Somehow I don't think he's an overall fan favorite. I won't deny he is an immense talent. But then I guess anyone with a background in musical theater could fare just as well. He does have amazing vocals & can hit notes along the same lines of Mariah Carey and the like. But do I want him as my next American Idol? No, not by a long shot. His presentation each week bothers me. Simon put it best after Lambert's performance of Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire" that it was 'indulgent rubbish'. Lambert comes off each week as being indulgent, cocky & over-confident. His gothic looks bother me. Call me old fashioned, but he scares me that should he become our next American Idol that his musical style will be likened to that of Marilyn Manson meets porn star meets Satan meets the depths of Hell. There is just something about anyone that wins over multitudes of folks & has them almost bowing down to them that makes me nervous. (Kinda reminds me of our current President!) apologies to those Obama supporters out there. (Again, another blog post for another day.)

So what is this season truly all about? I can't decide if the show is trying to 'shake' things up a bit by throwing in an element of surprise each week to give viewers a moment of suspense. It might be a little more believable & realistic-like had they chosen someone like Megan Joy to put on the chopping block or fan favorite, Scott Macintyre this early in the season. But last week Alexis Grace was sent home way too soon. And this week Matt Giraud was holding his breath for what seemed like an eternity to find out his fate. The look of disbelief on his face said it all, didn't it? I think he was as appalled by the whole thing as much as the viewers were.

I'm disgusted enough at this point to want to discontinue watching, yet, I feel compelled to watch because I dislike the very controversial Adam Lambert enough to do so just to see if he finds himself in the bottom 3. Although not likely, should he get booted then we will all know the show is definitely staged & solely on tv for the purpose of bringing good entertainment to viewers everywhere. To believe that he could actually be voted off by the viewers is a stretch at this point.