American Idol: Keith Urban's Best Zingers From the San Antonio-Long Beach Auditions

Blake Shelton gets plenty of “yee-haws!” for bringing a wicked sense of humor to NBC’s The Voice, and rightfully so. But now American Idol has lassoed its own country-music funnyman in the form of Keith Urban.

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The impressively tressed Aussie’s comic timing was on full display during Wednesday night’s San Antonio, TX/Long Beach CA audition episode, and we’ve compiled a rundown of his best zingers — from a Material Girl bon mot to a frank assessment of a male contestant’s good looks. So click through the gallery below, then hit the comments with your thoughts on Idol‘s rebooted Season 12 panel!

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44 Comments
  1. Love Keith Urban! My favourite new judge, not just because he’s funny but because he has intelligent things to say.

  2. AB says:

    Love him! Could seriously due without Nikki.

  3. Coryrox says:

    Muppet Minaj was a lot more bearable last night. I thought the boat
    setting was appropriate given Mariah’s life boats almost escaping from her teal dress. Still can’t figure out why Randy is there. Keith Urban is thoughtful with his critiques and shows excellent comic timing. I prefer to look at the other judges as a tool for him to work his comedic talents with.

  4. Muriel says:

    I like all the new judges but Keith is the best!

  5. YowzaPowza says:

    Enjoying all the judges together this year. They’re all comical in their own way. Keith because he’s genuinely funny. Nikki because she clearly dislikes Randy and Mariah. Mariah because she’s a total diva. And Randy we’ve been laughing at since at least season two, not in a good way.

  6. ben says:

    I could completely do without Nicki Minaj, but I’m enjoying all other judges. But I agre, Keith is particularly great. My favourite so far was back last week when he said ‘I loved the keys that was in’.

  7. Sue Ann says:

    Loving it! Keith is funny and quick witted! I am having a blast watching this season!

  8. I have always enjoyed Keith’s music but I have been pleasantly surprised to find he is very funny, very quick-witted. I love him. Can’t stand Manaj.

  9. Brandon says:

    My favorite part was Randy’s confusion at the word “metaphoric”.

  10. Maria says:

    He’s the whole reason I began watching in the first place, since I’m a longtime fan of his. I will continue to watch as long as he sits on the judges’ panel. I’ve seen glimpses of his intelligent humor in past interviews, but getting to watch him for an hour or two at a stretch…it’s awesome. He’s completely charming. Nicole Kidman has got to be the luckiest woman in the world!

  11. Tess says:

    I’d like to se him in a film with Mark Valley and Jon Bon Jovi playing his brothers.

  12. Deanne says:

    Keith is great! Funny, easy to look at and very good with a critique. Minaj is not my favorite at all. She is comical but not in a good way!

  13. Cari says:

    Keith is #1 – absolutely nothing I can say bad about him, but Niki really surprised me (in a good way). Yes, she goofs off, but there’s thought and intelligence in many of her responses. Mariah’s surprised me, too – thoughtful and knowledgeable. Randy, well, I have to have something to shake my head and giggle about. Have you noticed that several times the other three have voted without him saying anything? All in all, the best panel they’ve had. Hope they stay.

  14. MB says:

    Love him! Did not know too much about him before besides that he is Nicole Kidman’s husband. I am not usually a country music fan but am warming up to it this year.
    I am really enjoying all the judges this year. They are not only funny but have intelligent things to say. I am hoping this continues with the live shows. I liked JLo and Steven the first year before the live shows but by the end of season 10, I couldn’t stand them.

  15. Lindsay says:

    I love this highlight of Keith’s humor. His understated, intelligent, completely natural humor is just my cup of tea and absolutely hilarious. And he’s a great judge with a great ear to boot.

  16. Lois Benton says:

    I don’t like country music, but Blake Shelton and Keith Urban are the two best judges/coaches ever on reality singing competitions. Go figure.

  17. Mark says:

    He was outstanding as a judge on Nine’s The Voice (of Australia) last year… he has been replaced over here by Ricky Martin.

  18. Bobbi says:

    Keith is turning out to be my favorite judge. Didn’t know what he’d be like, but he has been great. Could do without the other three! lol The women know what they’re talking about but am sick of the “daaaaaahhhhlings” and the ridiculous nicknames and bitchy digs at each other.

  19. Keith was outstanding as a judge on the 1st season of The Voice in Australia. Everyone loved him and quite were devastated when he decided to leave. His sense of humour was brilliant and he knew the words to every song sung. I am not sure that Ricky Martin can adequately fill his .

  20. Lana says:

    Love, Love Keith, by far my most favorite judge ever!! I always thought Simon would be but Keith beats him hands down. He is also very funny, but what I really love is how he responds to the good singers, his face says it all. However I am loving the Divas and I didn’t think I would. Sometimes they get a bit much with Nicki’s over the topness and Mariah’s Divanessness(Is that a word? well you know what I mean) but I like them both. Nicki makes me laugh and they both are pretty honest with their critiques. This has become my favorite panel of judges and I do hope they don’t change with the live shows.

  21. Elizabeth says:

    I am loving Keith and Nikki both as judges! I think Mariah is quiet and not especially helpful. There were many times she parroted Randy, and let’s be honest, we definitely don’t need to hear his thoughts twice. I think Keith is pleasant and witty and gorgeous. I think NIkki is goofy but sweet. Also, in the big “diva fight” I totally agreed with her and thought Randy and Mariah were being asshats. (Keith was a bit douche-y as well, but he took the girls comments personally, so I get it.)

  22. Ang says:

    I really like Keith. At first I liked Niki, but now she gets on my nerves. The stupid nicknames, accents and hyperbole are all little much. Mariah is ok and well Randy is Randy. Can’t wait for the live shows.

  23. crabbypantz says:

    I wasn’t going to watch Idol this year (have said that every year since season 7). But curiosity got the best of me. Tuned in and actually enjoyed it. Love the addition of Keith Urban. His judging comments are very well thought out. I like that he’s kind too. And, of course he is incredibly handsome. Doesn’t seem to have an inflated ego either. Yup. I like Keith very much. He brings balance to the other wacky judges.

  24. megs says:

    I am loving Keith! I was nervous he might get swallowed by the, um, antics surrounding him, but he is quickly becoming my favorite on the panel. I think he has more of a dorky-cute humor than Blake’s more naughty one, but I love em both!

  25. Maynard says:

    Randy and Mariah are an alliance (he’s her manager), and poor Minaj can’t please anyone at anytime. But Keith is the light of these judges, in everyway. I can’t wait for him to get back in the states and the show to be live.

  26. Shroom says:

    I really laughed at his double-whammy from last weeks Baton Rouge auditions when first he said “I liked all the keys you sang that song in” when the guy had just finished singing the song completely out of tune and then he called the guy Nicki Minaj nicknamed “Mushroom” a “Fun Guy” (Fungi)

  27. Louise says:

    Keith is the best. Intelligent, funny, quick-witted, kind, talented, and sooooo easy on the eyes.

  28. Barbara says:

    OMG, Keith is so funny, he is the best and smart too and so cute.

  29. sandi says:

    Nikki is fine, but that voice!!! Sounds like Fran Dresher

  30. Tammy says:

    I wish we had had Keith the past two seasons instead of Steven Tyler. Get a level headed female in there and we might have a winning combo with Keith and Randy. For me…. it’s been 10 years now, stop pulling stunts American Idol and get rid of the train wrecks (on the judging panel too) One reason I do like the Voice is the judges get along, there is a sense of humor between them and even the singers that don’t make it are half decent singers. They don’t waste our time with the delusional who just want to get on television. Leave the odd balls to America’s Got Talent! (which I do not watch at all)

  31. Trista says:

    I haven’t been a fan of AI in a long, long time, but I’m kind of liking it this season. Keith Urban is the best. Hysterical!

  32. Gloria says:

    Keith Urban is the only reason I’m watching AI this season. He is so funny and adorable. I love people that are quick witted and Keith certainly is. Sure hope when they get to Hollywood Keith gets to perform live!!

  33. sharon snyder says:

    Dont know why he gets paid the least amount of all the judges.frist hes smart clearly he knows what hes talking about..so funny.and very very easy on the eyes. Makes you want to be a country fan….hope he stays or this is my last year.

  34. 5talentgirl says:

    Randy may not say the most intelligent things, but Michael Slezak, I think you’re going a little too far. You’re turning him into a beating stick and it’s tantamount to online bullying. Now everyone’s doing it and it’s become mob handed. I don’t like it at all and wish you would stop. It’s the only thing that seems biased and mean-spirited (which I don’t like) about your otherwise excellent commentary.

  35. Jo says:

    Keith Urban and Nicki Minaj are the highlights of this year’s panel for me. The best judges idol has ever had.

    • Princess Adora says:

      Completely agree, they’re my favs this season! Keith is always great and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by Nikki. Mariah is very good too. It’s been nice this year because the judges are actually saying what I’m thinking. I’m really enjoying this panel (aside from Randy, of course)!

  36. top judge says:

    I will only continue watching b/c of Keith Urban. Bored with Randy after all these years, Nikki is way too immature and needs all the attention, something just OFF with Carey. Not sure what it is About her. I TOTALLY LOVE KEITH, HIS SINGING AND HIS PERSONALITY.

  37. top judge says:

    I’m loving Keith Urban to death. his quick witted humour and badboy sexiness is just what this show needed to breathe live back into it.

  38. Tracy says:

    Love Keith Urban as an Idol judge. Keith has the ability to hear the soul of the contestants and shows respect for them. He is a real gentleman. Thank you for adding him to the show my family loves watching him each week. Keith is a great inspiration.

  39. traci matt says:

    Never heard of Keith or Nikki.
    Gotta say, absolutely LOVE keith. He has got to be one of the sexiest men ever! Id watch anything with him.
    Nikki is a ditz. Shes annoying. Comments are stupid! Is she a singer? That voice is like the Nanny!

  40. Teri says:

    Keith Urban is the best. I discovered Keith before his wife Nicole Kidman did He is so talented it’s unbelievable. Lucky Nicole.

  41. sharon says:

    I have been a Keith fan for a long time. I believe he has shown he multidimensional . So talented , what next Keith ?

  42. Nina Jones says:

    I wasn’t always in country music. Keith just turns me on and I feel something when he sings. Plus let’s be honest, I can look at him and see talent. If you have not, see him at his concert. You will not me disapointed.

  43. M.Panteli says:

    Keith is amazing so kind and genuine and funny. If you think he is good on American Idol , check out one of his concerts. (best I’ve ever been to)

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