Report: Nigel Lythgoe & Ken Warwick Out at American Idol -- 3 Priorities for New EPs!

American-Idol-Ken-Warwick-Nigel-LythgoeDon’t expect Bacharach, Motown and British Invasion themes for Season 13 of American Idol. That’s because executive producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick are exiting Fox’s reality behemoth amid sagging ratings and a planned overhaul of the program during its current off-season, The Wrap reported earlier today.

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The duo have been with Idol since its launch in 2002 — though Lythgoe left the program during its eighth and ninth seasons, then returned in Season 10.

A Fox spokesperson declined to comment on the Lythgoe-Warwick news, while a rep for FremantleMedia did not return a call from TVLine.

RELATED | American Idol: 30 Best Performances of All Time

The outster of the show’s highest-level producers comes less than a week after Season 12 judges Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj announced they wouldn’t return to the show next year. Founding judge Randy Jackson made a similar statement in mid-May, followed by news that Fox reality chief Mike Darnell is also headed for the exit.

Reports continue to circulate that Fox is planning a panel comprised entirely of former Idol contestants, most likely Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson and either Adam Lambert of Clay Aiken, though most sources indicate these decisions are not set in stone, particularly with so much flux at the executive level.

Lythgoe still serves as executive producer and head judge for Fox’s summer reality competition So You Think You Can Dance.

With new producers about to take the reins of The House That Kelly Clarkson Built, here are three crucial philosophies they must maintain during the overhaul process:

1) Don’t just say that the show is about the contestants, prove it. That means the ratio of singing-to-critiquing should favor the former activity, not the latter, a balance with which the show has increasingly struggled in recent incarnations. (Cutting back from four judges to three would be a good place to start.)

RELATED | American Idol: 11 Terrible Ideas to Avoid in a Potential Season 13 Reboot

2) Don’t think you can restore viewership by copying The Voice‘s coach-driven format. Part of what has made Idol great is watching young, unproven vocalists either soar or stumble based on their own instincts — and it’s perhaps why Idol still reigns as the one true hitmaker among reality singing competitions. In other words, Idol‘s basic concept is still appealing, it’s the execution that needs an overhaul.

3) It’s time to reconsider unlimited voting. Nobody — seriously, nobody — is impressed or excited by hearing Ryan Seacrest announce vote tallies of 15 million or 30 million or 50 million. They’re just meaningless numbers that remind the core audience that their votes — and their investment in the competition — has been negated by power-texters and speed-dial-aholics. Putting a 20-vote cap on every phone, computer and mobile device would be a good place to return a truly democratic feel to the proceedings — and could even shake up the types of winners that wind up getting the confetti shower at the end of each season.

Glad that Idol is making changes at the top, or will you miss Lythgoe and Warwick’s touch? Sound off in the comments, and for all my Idol news, interviews and commentary, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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179 Comments
  1. girlinmd says:

    Love your ideas espicially about unlimited voting a cap should be set it does turn people away

    • lyn says:

      ITA And thank you Mr. Slezak for promoting the voting cap. I stooped watching because of the voting. I could tolerate the repugnant judges, but not getting invested in singers when my votes count for nothing.

      • lyn says:

        Sorry, meant stopped.

      • RockGolf says:

        Ah. I was going to suggest you move your phone higher.

      • Michael hit most of it , though I would also not be upset if the producers stopped sending rejects to the final judges ,
        If they want to show the rejects do it in a 10 minute piece of what the producers saw after the auditions have been done for that city , or until all the real auditions are done ,
        also
        More Songs need To Be Cleared !
        Allow Singers to stay within their Genre For The Entire Show ,!
        Cast Singer / Performers , Stop Casting Back Stories !
        Do Not Cast Divas or Anyone That Is Not Walking Into This Like They Would If Auditioning For a Real Singing Job ,

    • Jenny says:

      As someone who voted like crazy to make sure David Cook won, I would have NO PROBLEM with them limiting the voting. I am sure there are many contestants that went home too early or lost to inferior talent because of crazy unlimited voting of others.

      • AlyB says:

        This. 1,000x this. It’s almost impossible to keep the best in when you have to vote for everyone you want to move forward and the voting is unlimited. Never mind the fact that a lot of people just don’t vote at all because they can’t devote the time it takes to feel like you made a difference.

        Unlimited voting almost forces you to pick an early favorite and throw all your votes to them. The problem is that when/if they get cut, people lose interest. Let people pick a bunch of favorites and feel like their votes are effective if they split their time. They’re less likely to tune out if they are supporting several people. I can’t believe they don’t understand this basic dynamic.

        Then again these are the same people who’ve been offering a preponderance of 1960′s music and wondering why they’re losing viewers under 60 in droves. Maybe it’s because Nigel is 63. He was born in 1949 so he grew up with Motown and Bacharach and probably thinks its the be all end all. I can’t imagine any other reason they e been so fixated on that era year after year after year. Time for some fresh blood for sure. They’ve proven they don’t understand a modern audience. Younger people don’t want to see show after show of old music any more than people their age wanted to watch Lawrence Welk.

      • Jongirl says:

        I’ve been beating the drum for limits to the voting on this site for years….and now all of a sudden it’s a great new idea?! The reason I never bother to vote for my favorites is because I don’t have time to call in over and over for hours and a few votes wouldn’t make any difference. If my few votes would be equal to the most anyone else could cast, I’d feel very differently.

    • if someone wants to vote, they have to pay, right? it’s not free, right? if that’s the case, they won’t put limits on it. that’s a source of income for whichever companies are involved. it’s not in their interest to put a cap on it. if 50 million people vote in one night and they each pay 99 cents to do it or whatever, that’s 50 million dollars for whatever company charges them for that. unless I’m mistaken and it is free.

      • ben says:

        I believe most voting forms are free. It’s possible cell includes a charge.

        • HTGR says:

          Some people pay for txts and calls, but probably not many. One person did say they got the unlimited txting plan just to vote for Idol, but I wouldn’t think it’s too common. Most calls on cell phones are free by the time voting opens unless you have some unusual plan and in that case.

          • HTGR says:

            And the person who paid for the txt plan just for this could have fired off an even larger number of phone calls for free anyway.

          • Name That Tune says:

            HTGR, in a 2 hour period with an SMS program on your cell phone, you can easily fire off 10, 000 votes. Without unlimited text messaging this would be quite expensive. I don’t know of any other situation where you would want to send that many texts on a weekly basis unless you are mass marketing. But you can only do this if your cell phone carrier is AT&T. If you never have any reason to call customer service, then you will be happy with them as your carrier. I eventually dropped AT&T because of poor customer service.
            OTH, an auto dial program on your cell phone limits you to about 750 votes. I now have Verizon so I am limited to auto dial and Facebook. This means for 2 hours every week my cell phone was committed to dialing and could not be used for any thing else.
            Even with the power of my cell phone, I never felt those votes I sent by text really made a difference. Because someone else would cancel me out. So I’m strongly recommend limiting the votes.
            If you are

          • Emma says:

            Here is what was in the Arkansas news: Guess this says it:
            “Cousins Jackalyn Barton, 12, of Guy and Madison Shaw, 13, of Conway, brought a sign that said, “Blister on my thumbs Voted 250,000 times.”

            Lynda Harmon, Barton’s grandmother and Shaw’s aunt, said the two lost an hour of voting time learning from another cousin how to super mega power text, but then they ended up being able to send 450 votes at a time from one phone and 100 at a time from another phone from 9 p.m. to midnight.

            Julie Ivy said, “I voted from 8 (p.m.) to 12 (midnight) on five phones dialing, and from 10 (p.m.) to 2 in the morning I voted with an AT&T Go Phone with a west coast phone number so I could vote for two extra hours. And all six hours were worth it. That two seconds when he announced (Allen’s) name all four months I would do it all again in a heartbeat.”
            This is what can happen with unlimited voting and it is why Adam lost. This is how they voted in Arkansas all season. It was not fair for nay other contestant.

          • HTGR says:

            Well it certainly could be that it is for the worst.
            .
            I would love to see the data and find out whether it is all for the worst, or whether it occasionally saves a great contestant who is getting slammed or doesn’t have a fanbase from the right area too.
            .
            You may well be right that the unlimited voting is always for the worst. Certainly it has to be plenty of time at the least.

          • HTGR says:

            Yeah, it’s probbaly just all around for the worst. They should’ve done away with it ages ago. Maybe the power would not have been so consolidated in one region and parts of the audience started to drop out.

        • Sharon O'Muilleoir says:

          Cell calls are free and so is online voting. Most texting is free but depends on your plan

      • Most people who have the ability to text vote for Idol have unlimited plans. However, it is a marketing tool for sponsor AT&T since those are the only text votes that count.

    • dude says:

      Agreed about the voting cap. I really don’t think it’s a coincidence when the show began we got winners like Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood and now we get winners like Lee DeWyze and Kris Allen.

    • klepp0906 says:

      ignorant networks. always fine with displaying just how greedy they are. lets fire a creative genius, let alone a loyal decade long employee because people are losing interest in a show after 10 years ffs. the level of idiocy is unfathomable. LOL and these are the guys going to their masseuse after a “hard” days work, then driving home in their Bentley to share a chef cooked meal w/ their trophy wife. Guess who will be even LESS likely to watch next season?

      • HTGR says:

        Nigel??

      • Emma says:

        People lost interest for a reason. They wanted a real show where their votes counted. They did not want an overproduced show where the producers choose the winner and accept 10 to 20 thousands votes from 1 person. If the viewers want a white guy with a guitar every year so be it. It is my opinion that that would have been the results except for unlimited voting. Adam Lambert would have won and he does not play guitar.

  2. Mike R. says:

    Don’t even watch the show, but it was time.

    • Nigel Is Pervy says:

      It was definitely overdue. Now if they could just get Nigel Lythgoe off So You Think You Can Dance, I will be truly happy. He is truly a disgusting, perverted old man. Time for a change, Lythgoe’s gotta GO!

  3. Jake says:

    They seriously need to cancel this sinking ship..It has sailed, it was a great show..it has lasted a while and was hit for Fox. Time to put it to pasture.

    • Lunakit says:

      mix metaphor much? ;-)

    • Jacob P. says:

      Don’t watch it if you don’t like it

      • ajintexas says:

        And here you have it ladies and gentleman, Captain Obvious brings to you the hallmark of comments about people who don’t like shows. As if they didn’t know they could stop watching at any time. Thank you Captain Obvious for saving us all from ourselves! Now that that’s out of the way, this show sucks and I hope it gets cancelled so Fox can put something new on the Air in it’s spot. Sadly it may not matter though because they are heavily inversted in this reality crap that isn’t reality.

    • LeahKittyS says:

      I agree, but it’s still making FOX a good sum of money. I stand by my prediction that the final season will be either Season 13, 14, or 15.

      • ben says:

        I don’t stand by your prediction unless a new regime makes things even worse. People have been predicting the end of the show by now for years (as with many other reality shows that have remained afloat), and I predict your prediction is just as wrong. I say no end in sight. The ratings this year may have been disappointing, but I’m willing to bet that in terms of the money they made off the show is still outsripped pretty much anything on the box.

        • AlyB says:

          Yes. The ratings decline is calculated vs. it’s other seasons. Overall tv viewership is down and AI is still consistently winning its time slot. The ratings may look weak versus its hayday but they still draw some pretty impressive numbers. They do have to increase their 18 to 34 share to pull in the prime ad spending but this show isn’t going anywhere.

  4. Jacob P. says:

    I shudder at the thought of “The Voice” style coaching…. D:

  5. Esaul says:

    If Idol could pull off some of these ideas, I’d consider watching it again.

  6. Alienate says:

    Yes, Idol can be saved. I hope the new team has the guts to return it to its roots while pruning the crap: Like 4 judges, unlimited voting, bland song categories, back story pity parties, and bandzillas that overpower the singer’s voice.

    • deedee says:

      Yes, that’s the key: return to its roots. I don’t want a complete overhaul that makes the show some Voice/XFactor/AGT hybrid. Keep the essence of the show intact, and leave it alone. I just fear that a new team will not understand the soul of Idol and what made it great in the first place. If they’re not emotionally attached to it, they may kill it with too much newness.

      • My Alter Ego says:

        An excellent point. (I’m still at work, this evening, though at home, so until I get what needs to be attended to done, I’ll only be “peeking” in here tonight.

    • Jay says:

      Oh, thank you for mentioning the overpowering band. AI & Fox spend umpteen thousands on new sets/stages when they should be concentrating on the sound system. I can’t believe the number of performances that are marred by loud back up or bad performer microphones and earpieces.

      • HTGR says:

        In that one clip they showed this season it seemed like they were using interns for all the sound stuff. I guess they spent all the money on the producers and judges.

  7. Lauren says:

    It’s about time! This is the only way the show has any shot of truly re-vamping itself.

  8. Lana says:

    I’m excited to see what is going to happen, though I am hoping that Keith stays and Adam is added.

  9. Jayar says:

    And for the love of Kelly Clarkson, give them a larger catalog of songs from which to choose!!!

  10. forwarddad says:

    I really really don’t like an all former AI panel. Maybe 1. Need a producer type like Pharrell or Bruno Mars.

  11. Brigette says:

    Great suggestions. May I add let the shows be offered to stream online and/or rerun during the week? It’s very behind the times that you can’t watch full episodes of Idol online, and even many YouTube clips end up being “taken down” for copyright reasons. One of the reasons why The Voice is doing well is because it reruns all the time, so people can catch up on it later. Maybe the people at Fox think only offering the full show on TV will force people to watch it live, but they are wrong– that’s not how TV is watched anymore. Personally, I’m glad Uncle Nigel is leaving. Let’s clean house and revamp this thing.

  12. Lana says:

    I love Nigel on SYTYCD but not on AI as much or at least did not agree with All of Their ideas this year!! Quit messing with the show and just look for great amateur singers, with guitars or accordians, who cares just get back to the basics.

  13. Sunny says:

    I hope the new producers don’t completely do away with the theme weeks – they just need some revamping also. Some of my suggestions are One-Hit Wonders, 90s R&B, Top 40, Big Band Era, Jazz Music, Viewer’s Choice, etc. The downside to not having theme weeks is one dimensional song selections. Look at Team Blake. All of his team members has only sang country music and nothing else. Its very boring and annoying.

    • RockGolf says:

      Do we need themes at all? Why force a country singer to perform Hits of ABBA? Or a rocker to sing big band? Most successful acts pick a genre and stick to it for the most part.

      • Sunny says:

        I think theme weeks are needed because they challenge the contestants and it forces them to be creative and think outside the box. In my opinion, the best singers and/or performers should win these competitions. And the best way to make that happen is to force them to sing songs they probably wouldn’t have chosen for themselves. If not, the contestants will be comfortable for the duration of the competition and they shouldn’t be.

        • Jenny says:

          I agree Sunny. The themes are good because it does challenge the singers. The good ones are able to take something you think they wouldn’t be successful it and make it work. Those are the Idol moments we still talk about today. The problem with the themes is that they are too big that most can find a song in their wheel house to make it work. The last few seasons of contestants haven’t really been challenged by the themes.

          • Venus says:

            Scotty McCreepy always got around the themes. He even found an Elton John song to fit.

      • deedee says:

        Because it’s fun to see what artists can do with themes that are an uneasy fit. We got some amazing performances over the years because of the imposed themes.

        • lyn says:

          ITA. A good singer is a good singer. Look what Garth Brooks did with Billy Joel’s Shameless.

          • rockgolf says:

            Yeah, but that Joel song was already pretty close to country. On the other hand, would you want Brooks’ take on “Baby Got Back” or “Crazy Train”?

          • lyn says:

            That’s not really a fair question with Crazy Train because Ozzy is a tenor and Brooks is a baritone. Some songs don’t translate well. Frank Sinatra would sound like crap singing Slim Whitman songs. Tiny Tim should not sing Ol Man River.

        • chistosa says:

          And who can forget Adam Lambert’s Ring of Fire on country night. Hated it at the moment but I still have it on my playlist and love it.

          • deedee says:

            Oh, I love Adam’s ROF! There’s genius in there.

          • rockgolf says:

            Kinda my point: Why have themes if the arrangement is nothing like the theme? Lambert ROF was good, but it certainly wasn’t Country.

          • deedee says:

            rockgolf, it takes creativity to turn a country song into something weird and different and still good in its own right. Not everyone has the musicality to pull it off (KLC’s “8 Days a Week”). I personally enjoy seeing how the contestants reinterpret songs from genres that are not their forte. Makes the show much less straight karaoke. Plus, it’s the sort of thing that happens in the real world when artists cover other people’s songs (eg., Dolly/Whitney “I Will Always Love You”).

          • Benji says:

            Adam sang Ring of Fire??? Completely forgot.

  14. Spycigal says:

    Agree with your idea Michael – cut back to 3 Judges and limit the voting! I don’t think a panel of former Idols is a good idea as you still need proven musicians/industry types – I’d keep Keith Urban, one former Idol contestant that is successful and can hand out constructive critiques (Adam was good when he guest mentored) and one producer, maybe someone from Jimmy Iovine’s team (keep the Jimmy part). I like theme weeks but something a bit fresher and for goodness sake give them a big list of songs to chose from! I liked how this year they brought back former Idols for results shows but there was still too much filler – show us what the kids week was like. I’m sure I’ll think of more improvements over the Summer!

    • billnyc says:

      I totally agree with a mixed judging panel because it lends AI more CREDIBILITY and AUTHORITY. This would also give contestants different music industry perspectives, which is what they would have to navigate in real life. Yes a star … Keith Urban, sure. Plus two other industry perspectives … record label exec, producer, MICHAEL SLEZAK ! etc. (And let them be honest and REQUIRE them to critique).

      So, while I love the idea of an AI winner/star (Jennifer Hudson!) to be on the panel, I don’t feel that would make a BALANCED JUDGING PANEL. An AI star judge would just replicate the other star judge’s perspective. Secondarily, it would just be a constant reminder of AI’s old glory days … kind of like old man nostalgia, which is a bell-ringer for death.

      AI should LOOK FORWARD and BE FRESH while keeping it FAMILIAR. So make past AI star appearances special moments that punctuate new, re-imagined segment approaches that showcase contestants and their songs front and center.

  15. Princess Adora says:

    Awesome suggestions, I hope they follow through! However, I like British Invasion week, it’d just be nice to hear something more current from the Brits, just NO Adele!!

  16. Neen says:

    The show’s credibility died at the end of season 8, the voting process never more glaringly absurd. Adam, more than any other contestant made the show MUST SEE TV. Bringing him back, and implementing your suggestion for voting would be a good start toward regaining the viewers who’d given up on the show.

  17. airryana says:

    Keep it simple – #1 should be “Listen to Michael Slezak” followed by #2 “When in doubt, see #1″

  18. Merrillee W'Rolla-Long says:

    I think it’s about time that they kicked the Boobsy Twins out the door. However, I don’t think the show has a fighting chance. Bringing in former Idol singers who did not win to judge a competition is a bit hypocritical on Idol’s part. And further, had JHud not won an Oscar, Idol would never acknowledge her. She’s a 7th placer. Adam and Clay are runners up, however, Clay has been vocal about wanting to be a judge. I think he’d be a good judge because he doesn’t mince words. As seen on Celebrity Apprentice he has a lot of integrity so if he were to judge I’d consider looking in on the show again from time to time. As for Kelly Clarkson, she was on some talent competition show recently and she was kind of meh. And finally if they put Adam Lambert on, who I think is the biggest poser the show has ever had, then I’d never tune in to the show.

    If they did the utmost stupid thing and put Lambert and Aiken on together….well then they might as well get Nikki and Mariah back. They’d be out each other’s throats from the getgo.

    But if I had my druthers…it’d be Clay I chose. He was at least entertaining on Celebrity Apprentice.

    • Emma says:

      Adam Lambert a poser and Clay has integrity? What nonsense. Clay is not current and is just not likable. Adam Lambert broke the show and he is the only one who can fix it. The show became too scripted during Season 8 when rather than focusing on the fact that they had found a superstar the producers decided that it would be more dramatic if they convinced people that a singing contest was occurring between Adam and Kris. Michael was part of that fiasco as was most of the writers who focus on American Idol. Intelligent people do not like to be manipulated. Kris is a very ordinary singer and a poor musician. Look where he is now. Allen’s winning against Adam made American Idol seem like a joke. The rest of the world can’t understand it. We all now know that there were 38 million Arkansas votes assisted by AT&T executive Matt Jordan. What the show needs now is a good dose of honesty and not judges who will give a standing ovation to every mediocre performance. Simon only got out of his seat once and that was for Adam Lambert. Adam has the intelligence, kindness knowledge of vocal skills and the balls to be a great judge.

      • Lambert broke the show? Maybe the over promotion of him did. Wake up and see that your Emperor has no clothes. Also that BS about ’38 million votes from AR’ is just that. Keep spreading the lies of KK whose only purpose in life is to profit off her prophet Lambert.

        • Emma says:

          Lambert broke the show. You may not think so but marketing data proves that 80% of the core viewers favored Adam Lambert over Kris Allen. Hell, you did not need marketing data if you went to an Idol tour that year. It was all about Adam. He stole the show from the no talent from Arkansas. The 38 million Arkansas votes is not a lie. Those numbers came out of Governor Beebe’s mouth, a governor who had close ties to AT&T and were posted on the official web page of Robbie Wills, the Speaker of the House in Arkansas. Those numbers were never retracted by AT&T. AT&T rep Ted Wagnon, whose son played music at church with Kris Allen, said, ” AT&T does not divulge or confirm how many votes were cast in any state”. Are you telling me that that is a denial of 38 million votes? It was lawyer talk because they did not want to address the situation truthfully. Just this year on one of the early vote shows Ryan Seacrest talked about who got the most votes and where they came from. It is a well documented fact that Allen’s vote parties were attended by about 3,000 people on the night of the final. The local news covered the parties and within minutes of the start of the voting people many had over 1,000 votes. That is the numbers they claimed on local TV. There is no question about what happened in Arkansas that night. Viewers were turned off when Adam lost and many stopped watching. That is a fact weather you like it or not.

      • Mary says:

        Wow I don’t even know how to respond to this. First, Adam did not break AI nor can he save it. Adam is very talented but believe it or not – he is not everyone’s cup of tea. He is very popular oversea, but what about US where this show takes place. Your opinion of Kris is just that Your opinion. I happen to think Kris has immense talent – even if you don’t. Emma are you related to that crazy lady Kerry, because even if the 38 million votes came from Arkansas that is about a third of the 100 million votes placed, so obviously other states voted for Kris. They are two different artist with talent. I personally do not want any of the Alumni in the judges chair, wouldn’t mind if the rotated some in as a mentor/judge for a week, but not one of three. To clear the record, the producers did not want Kris in the finals, they wanted Danny. Kris earned his spot by being creative in his song choices and arrangements, and I am sorry if you cannot see that but the facts remain. Adam did a great job as mentor, but that is a whole different ball of wax then being a judge. It should not matter who sits in that seat the show needs to get back to the basic and be about the contestants period.

        • Emma says:

          If you think Kris has immense talent you are probably his mother. In the real world outside of your head Kris is not highly regarded as a singer and he is a poor guitar player and a dismal piano player. Kris did not earn his spot it was stolen for him with home town power texters. By the way, I listen to Brenda English and Kerry Kolsch with Scott Katz on the US Townhall podcast and she seems very sane and intelligent. She is a lawyer and is always interesting. They discuss Dancing With the Stars, American Idol and Celebrity Apprentice. They even had interviews with Donald Trump. The people who are crazy are the people who believed that Kris Allen should have won over the voice of this generation. By the way, 38 million votes is closer to 40%. Adam would have needed over 80% of the votes in the rest of the country to win. Adam would be a great judge and bring back the core viewers who love him.

          • Mary says:

            No I am not his mother just a fan of Kris and Adam. Many of professionals have spoke highly of Kris also. It is your opinion that you think Kerry is sane and intelligent, I on the other hand disagree. If someone cannot move past a television show that happen 4 years ago then for me there is definitely something wrong. Having interviews with Donald Trump really is not a positive way to prove she is sane, because quite frankly he has a screw loose. Both of them like to hear themselves talk. It is obvious we will agree to disagree. We all get you don’t like Kris, so be it.
            You are dreaming if you think Adam or any judge for that matter will bring back core viewers.

      • Merrilee W'Rolla Long says:

        Emma…this thread is NOT about Adam vs. Kris as you seem to want to make it in EVERY post you write. However, it is MY opinion, for which I am entitled, to say that I feel Adam is a poser and Clay has integrity. If you don’t like it, just move on because none of your nasty words about Kris Allen will change my opinion on how I feel. As a matter of fact, the more you spew your poison about Kris, Clay vs. Adam, the less apt I will be to even consider Adam as a judge.

        I use to like Adam until his fans got in the act. So back to topic.

        • AlyB says:

          I don’t want to revisit the results from that season. I just want to go on record saying I have the polar opposite view. The last person I want to see on the panel is Clay. Why? He hasn’t been particularly successful anywhere. All of his plastic surgery is the drastic kind of alteration that seems to define a poser. Give me Adam any day. I would love it if he was on as a judge. He was a fantastic contestant, consistently creative, original and immensely talented. He’d be a great addition to the show. Clay is too abrasive and would just put people off. He doesn’t have the resume to be a Simon. I think that’s what he’d try to do and I don’t think Adam would go that route.

        • Emma says:

          You can not talk about the downfall of American Idol without bringing up Adam vs. Kris. American Idol lost the integrity of the show when they allowed the cheating Arkansas votes to count. Any votes tainted by AT&T’s assistance and votes created on free or borrowed AT&T phones should have been eliminated. The viewers were upset and still are. They knew that Adam Lambert is the most exciting entertainer who has ever graced that stage. When Adam was snubbed as a judge last year viewers were upset again. I do not give a rats ass about your opinion or how you feel about Adam because anyone who thinks that Adam and Kris are in the same league as entertainers does not have an intelligent opinion. By the way, Clay is a way better singer than Kris and he should have won his season. Clay did not lose by cheating but because of over burdened phone lines. That does not mean that Clay is what current core viewers want as a judge.

          • Mary says:

            NOT all viewers just you and other Glamerts who cannot get past 4 years ago. You should be happy Adam was not judge because the fact remains the season sucked and then you would have to waste your time defending that it was not his fault the show is down. I hate to break it to you, but Adam is having just as hard time getting his music heard as the rest of the other not name Kelly and Carrie. Adam has talent but his is not a worldwide star, last I checked US is part of it and Adam cannot get his music played on radio. I am happy for his success, hell I even like some of his music, but just having your name in the paper or on Hollywood gossip rags doesn’t make it true. Just because a singer cannot hit the glory note does not make them any less talented. To each their own.

        • Emma says:

          @ Mary, obviously it is you not Kerry who can not move past a TV show from 4 years ago. She is sane, you are delusional. You do not seem to realize that no one in the entertainment industry thinks much of Kris Allen. He had some hype because of his unexpected win, but when the real world realized that he did not best Adam Lambert because of talent, they lost interest in him. He is ordinary and boring and nothing you say can change that. He will be the househusband taking care of the kids while his wife has to go out to be the breadwinner. You seem to hate Kerry because she pointed that out. In my opinion Kerry was on the money and you are living in your own little world of confusion. You and the few other cheaters that still try to defend what they did are the only ones who give a rats ass about Kris. As far as Clay goes, he should have won; He is just a has been now. In his day Clay was more popular than the winner.

          • Mary says:

            @Emma – it is not worth my time and effort to keep responding – I don’t care what you think to be the truth – I have a life.

      • Rosebud says:

        SIGH. Dear, dear, Emma. Why is it not okay for someone to prefer Clay Aiken? Music is so subjective so why try to make it your way or the highway? I am with the people who prefer Clay. However, I’d feel sorry if they did make Clay a judge. Why? Because if they did, glamberts like you would storm the Bastille and cry “Off with his head.” If Fox TV had the audacity to make any other male Idol singer a judge, glamberts such as yourself would storm the Bastille and cry “Off with their heads.” And if heaven forbid, someone disagreed with dear Adam on an judgment call, the glamberts with opinions similar to yours would Storm the Bastille and yell “Off with their heads.”

        It’s a lose-lose situation. I already feel the neck pain.

        • Emma says:

          They will not make Clay a judge. He is not currant. I do not have a problem with anyone preferring Clay over Adam. It is obvious that Clay will not gain viewers for American Idol. Adam Lambert has not peaked as Clay has and appeals more to core viewers. Music is not subjective. Musical taste is. Voices can be judged by objective standards. Adam Lambert has a greater vocal range and in every identifiable way has a better technique and tone than Clay. Music professors and many in the industry agree.

  19. ben says:

    Yes yes yes. I don’t agree with every one of Michaels ideas (eg song bans – if contestants want to risk comparing themselves to past contestants, its for them to sink or swim on that decision). But these three are THE three to fix this show, easily.
    -
    Firstly, the judges are the biggest problem with this show. For some reason, the show has become about them, and signing the most well-known ones possible. The biggest reason I am against an all alumni panel is I think this would continue this trend. Lets just pick people who can judge well and stop with judging gimmicks. Also, makes time for singing longer and judging shorter.
    -
    Secondly, I truly can’t watch the Voice or X Factor because of the over-focus on judging and competition between the judges, and gimmicks which mean culling better singers in favour of worse ones (eg only letting each coach have so many contestants make the ginals). I also dislike Iodl’s sometimes need to have an even gender balance in the top 10/12. Idol should stick with a top 12 which is derived in a way that is most likely to give us the best top 12 possible with fewer gimmicks to predetermine who they will be.
    -
    Lastly, I’d say 20 per device is still too high. Lets make it 5. Gives you the chance to vote for multiple people if you like more than one, or do a mini-power vote for your favourite, but you won’t skew the results.

    • ben says:

      Also, another idea. What if on any given theme night, a contestant can either pick to sing a song from that genre or an original song in the style of that genre?

    • deedee says:

      What if your household has 6 or more people and only 1 phone line and 1 computer? How would a 5 vote limit per device be fair?

      • lyn says:

        The % of households where that would apply is so miniscule as to be insignificant.

      • ben says:

        I’m sure they can manage to agree in a democratic manner. Plus I’m not sure fairness is relevant to that situation. I’m thinking of fairness for the contestants, who are surely the people for whom fairness matters most.

  20. Kristi says:

    Question for you guys: How do we know that Nigel is the one behind the outdated song choices and unlimited voting?

    • queenjk says:

      I don’t know about voting but Nigel absolutely is in complete control over the presentation of the show. He has final say over song choice and arrangement. He works with the band to give the songs the sleepy geriatric arrangement. He’s the one giving contestants the extremely limited song lists. He’s the one who creates the themes. FOX has said on record it has never been an issue for them to pay for songs to clear. Every year that goes by Nigel exerts more and more control over the contestants and feeds his ego to present his vision for a variety show highlighting the songs of his youth.

      • Jason says:

        Yeah the paying for song clearances thing never made much sense to me. I think people just assume certain somgs can’t be cleared because of money! Truth is the Beatles and Led Zeppelin and Michael jackson are probably the most expensive songs to clear yet they can clear them. Clearance issues are more that the songwriters amd artists do not want their songs covered on Idol because it is not cool and comes off as a sell out. It is not a money issue!

      • My Alter Ego says:

        I think that both you queenjk and Jason have missed Kristi’s point: how do we KNOW? What are the facts? You claim that Nigel is in complete control over the presentation of the show. What is that statement based on? Provide evidence for your assertions. I think that’s what Kristi’s asking, although perhaps I’ve misinterpreted her question.

  21. Lindsie M. says:

    I loathe Adam Lambert….his over the top fans have made me really come to hate the guy. So I know if he is picked for judge, Idol will have one less viewer to worry about. But based on the fact he has zillions and zillions of fans and is an international superstar, I’m sure the show won’t miss measly me.

    • Emma says:

      You are right no one will miss you. Good riddance!

      • Issa says:

        She has a right to her opinion. Chill. Not everyone has to love Adam Lambert. Hard to remember for some perhaps, but true. So it’s her right to feel that way. Give it a rest, will ya?

        • Emma says:

          I have a right to my opinion as well. It is obvious that the creeps that got Kris his power text win will not give up trying to tear Adam down to make their loser look better.

      • Lindsie M says:

        KK, I mean Emma, you have just proved my point…. I wish the runner-up would take all his fans and leave for Europe or Megastarghanistan so all the rest of us can live in peace while the runner up collects all his trophies for being so noble and awesome. Seriously.

        • Chewtoy says:

          Megastarghanistan. LOL. I understand that’s right next to Butthurtia.

          • Emma says:

            Homophobic comments like yours explain your point of view. Fortunately you are becoming a minority.

          • Chewtoy says:

            Errm, I was refering to Lambert’s butthurt fans, like you, not any activity he may partake of. You’re the one that went there.

        • Emma says:

          Calling Adam “the runner up” when he lost by cheating shows how little character you have. It is like praising a killer when he survives longer than his victim. Adam is not going anywhere. Kris Allen, on the other hand will be back in Conway singing for the Toad Suck Queens if they let him.

  22. Its hard, because when looking at these two you have to take every season into account. They’ve over seen great seasons of Idol and horrible seasons of Idol. Lets be honest, this was not the worst season Idol has ever seen, nor was it the best.

    • IMHO says:

      You were doing well until your last sentence ;-). I wonder what season(s) you think were worse …

      • ben says:

        err, off the top of my head, at least 4 and 9, and possibly 2. I’d personally include 7 too, although many loved that season. Many others would say 3 (which I actually rank quite highly). Of course, I rate how good a season of idol is on one thing and one thing only – the quality of the talent.

        • deedee says:

          Are you mad, ben? Seasons 4 & 7 were among the best!

          • sg54 says:

            As I younger viewer (16), sometimes I have to base it on the winner. I’ve seen season 1,3, and 4 in idol redux form, and I starting watching from season 6. I’d say 2, 5, and 9 were the worst. 8,7,10, and 11 were great, and I can’t say too much about the earlier ones cuz I haven’t watched them much. Honestly, I’m basing 2 and 5 off the success of the winners and the contestants.

          • ben says:

            Season 4 and 7 were among my favourite finales, but in both cases I cared about/enjoyed very few of the contestants. I know I’m in the minority on season 7, but are you really telling me that season 4 was that good? Anthony Federov? Scott Savol? Vonzell Solomon? Really?

          • deedee says:

            LOL, no, not Scott Savol. The season was made fun by the Constantine shenanigans, and Bo Bice & Carrie Underwood. The group as a whole had chemistry in S4. Same with S7 and S11. Some seasons are interesting, and others are not. Part deliberate casting, part luck.

          • Ben says:

            I disliked Constantine, the only one I liked other than Carrie and Bo was Anwar. These things are always subjective of course, but I would have thought 4 was generally recognised as one of the weaker seasons, talent wise, so it did surprise me to see someone consider it among the best. For season 7, I liked many of the people but I simply found boredom in their performances (Brooke, Michael, Carly, and David A). Hopefully we can all agree on 9, anyway!
            -
            I think what made 12 weak was the way the top 10 was developed, and cutting it down to 10 instead of 12/13, which gives you longer with your favourites. I can’t see Paul or Curtis making the top 10 if they didn’t require an even split of guys/girls. But I still felt there were lots of people whose performances I consistently enjoyed this season… 5 or 6 of the top 10. I think it also looks weak in some ways because it follows two very strong seasons, talent-wise. So yeah, I’d have season 12 above 4.

          • deedee says:

            Sure, these things are always subjective. I have a weakness for season 4 because it was the first year I watched and it hooked me like a drug. It’s the reason I’m still here talking about S12! But, yeah, no argument about S9. :D

        • Emma says:

          The most successful season was Season 5. 7 out of the top 21 in album sales came from that year. They include Hicks, Pickler and Daughtry. Google American Idol Alumni Album Sales. Season 5 was the top grocer on tour and second was Season 8.

    • Mary says:

      I don’t know if it was the worst but might be tied with season 9. The hiring of the the judges because they wanted a train wreck or the making sure they had a female winner might actually make this the worst, which is sad because Kree and Candice are the ones suffering. AI lost a lost of viewers due to this, even if they are not in the right demo and I honestly don’t know if they can get them back.

      • I feel bad for this year’s contestants. More so than any other year, they were just pawns in some wicked game and the ratings bear that out. The top 5 girls (manipulated as that may have been) are truly talented and I feel bad for them having this albatross around their necks.

        • Tim says:

          I agree with you Miz, I believe the mess of this season and who knows if this tour will ever materialize (it is scheduled to start 2 months after the finale..wow) may hurt the brand of the finalists. Not all (Candice, Kree, and Angie) but the others, yes.

          • LeahKittyS says:

            @Tim, the tour always starts in early July, but in the past it always ended in mid or late September. This year is was set to begin at the end of June and end at the end of August. Now it’s starting around the usual time but still ending early. Not good promotion for anyone, as you said.

        • LeahKittyS says:

          Miz, I agree.

          • Tim says:

            Thanks, LeahKittyS. The fact that 10 shows were canceled before the start tour started does not bode well. I cannot help but think that more will be axed while the tour commences or they will be playing in venues that are filled to way less than capacity. These kids will lose in two ways; less exposure and less money in their pockets since they are paid per show.

  23. QueenJ says:

    This news is just too good to be true. I won’t get excited until it is confirmed.

    Limited voting will do NOTHING to curtail the crazies who are desperate to vote a contestant through. They will just find other avenues to do so and will have an advantage because the casual fans will trust that they actually are limited. Then again, Idol probably won’t have any contestants that will inspire rabid voting anyhow.

  24. Christina says:

    This news is like Christmas morning. These guys needed to go!

  25. JJ says:

    If Idol goes through with using Idol Alumni as judges/coaches than season 13 will likely be its last. Such a stupid unimaginative idea.

  26. Jake says:

    Honestly, this news has made me extremely happy. Idol is the only reality singing compitition I watch and I’ve been saying (along with everybody else) that something major needs to happen to reinvigorate the show. Lets hope new E.P.’s help

  27. I Heart Damon Salvatore says:

    I hope if it’s an either/or thing (though I’ve heard Kelly said no), we get Adam over Clay. If it’s Kelly, Jennifer and Clay, that’s all representation from the first half of Idol’s run. We need someone from the back half, too. Plus, Adam rocks!

  28. HTGR says:

    Good suggestions.
    .
    About time, when he came back for S10 his over the top scripting sent it into this spiral, or so it appeared. Maybe you say it was Randy and later JLo doing it on their own, but then why did all the cuts and edits and so much else seem to match?

    • HTGR says:

      Part of me wonders what unlimited voting does though. Is a net wash? For the bad? Sometimes even for the good?? It sure it a pain though and probably does drive many away from bothering.

      • lyn says:

        Unlimited voting gave us Lee DeWyze. It cost Adam the win. In season one if cell phones were as ubiquitous as they are now, the winner would have been Justin Guarini. Idiot zealots gather every cell phone in the house, the landline and the computer and vote 10, 000 times for who they think is cute. Talent is not a factor for them.

      • Emma says:

        In Arkansas about 3,000 people at UCA voted about 10,000 times each producing about 30 million votes. AT&T gave out free phones and taught power texting. That is why Adam lost. All season long Kris’s fans kept him in no matter how bad he sang. Lets be honest, Allen was awful many times. Allen got a little better with Adam’s coaching. What unlimited voting does is let a less popular and talented person win. This year Angie Miller was the most popular. Who knows how Candice won. It was not because more people liked her. Social media tells the story of who is more popular. Angie was way ahead in every measurable way. Now that the most popular person did not win people are not buying tickets to the Idol tour. No wonder everyone is getting fired. It should have happened when they let the AT&T assisted Arkansas votes be counted.

        • Get over it. says:

          EMMA are you on drugs. DO THE MATH. 30 Million does not make up for the 100 million voting. I WILL SAY IT SLOWLY SO YOU UNDERSTAND – not everyone liked Adam’s style of music. I hate to tell you this, but if even if it was limited Adam still probably would of lost. Danny’s fan probably voted for Kris not Adam. Angie was not the most popular, you cannot go by how many twitter followers she had. The tour is suffering not because Candice won, If Angie won it would of made no difference. Nobody wants to sit thru 5 guys that truly are not good. Again take away the 30 million vote you say are from Arkansas and that leaves 70 million, I am sure many of those were for Kris. If you remember correctly they never said how close so I am to believe the Kris had the lead, In fact Billy Bush mention during the interview with Kris that he said it was a landslide. I AM SORRY your favorites did not win, but you need to get on with your life.

          • Emma says:

            Here is the math for you. 38 million votes came from Arkansas. That leaves 62 million. Adam would have had to get over 80% of the other votes in order to win. Danny’s fans hated Kris because Kris acted like an ass during their duet and it was Danny’s spot on the final that Kris stole. In every measurable way Adam is more popular than Kris and he always was, even if he is not your cup of tea. No one is going to the tour this year because the fans do not like viewer manipulation. Angie will sell more records than Kree or Candice because she is more popular. Time will show that I am right.

        • deedee says:

          Emma, it’s not that complicated. Candice won because she is an outstanding singer – far, far superior, vocally, to Angie. Why would people not buy tickets to the show just because Angie’s performance slot is15 minutes before Candice’s?

          • lyn says:

            This is only my opinion. The tour will not succeed because young girls aren’t interested in any of the guy singers. I’ve been to several of the tour concerts over the years and the audience is 70% or more female. This year’s roster won’t draw them.

        • Benji says:

          Emma, you need to give yourself a reality check. Stop whining about Adam Lambert losing by theft. Ask Billy Bush. Kris won by a landslide. If you check the tour sales, Little Rock sold the most tickets and had 100% sold out audience. That’s Kris Allen’s neck of the woods. San Diego, Adam’s hometown and Los Angeles..the town in which he lived in, did not bring in the highest tour sales nor even sell out. THAT’s how popular Adam was.

          • HTGR says:

            None of the contestants do well in big coastal cities and certainly not LA where there are a 100 other much bigger stars trying to sell out the same weekend. moderately small fish in giant pond vs. moderate fish in small pond. Not that I want to get into that whole thing. I wasn’t in either camp in any majorly huge way.

          • Emma says:

            How pathetic of you. All over the US people walked out of the show when Adam’s set was over and you suggest that that Kris was more popular? The only place in the whole US on tour that Kris Allen was favored over Adam was Arkansas. You prove my point. By the way, Adam sold more merchandise than the other 9 combined. AS a side note, Adam was far more popular than Kris in Danny’s home town, so the myth about Danny’s votes going to Kris is a lie. You do not have to believe me, read the reviews. Adam Lambert stole the show from the cheating winner.

  29. MattG says:

    Through the course of this last season you offered many suggestions how to boost the ratings and fix the show. I’ve agreed with most of them, but one thing you always didn’t mention was the fact that none of the suggestions would ever work unless they got rid of the biggest problem, and that is Uncle Nigel and Ken. Now that they are gone, then other things can take shape. But as long as they were still around, things would never change. I say bravo. Maybe I’ll start watching again!

  30. Name That Tune says:

    I think we understood at the end of the season that this was coming. I agree with your suggestions but think that one more thing can be done. Eliminate the results night. I rarely watch the entire results show and have found I can learn the results on the Internet before they are aired in my time zone. Then watch the results on Daily Motion, again before it’s aired in my time zone . Takes about 5 minutes to watch. People are busy and don’t have time to watch celebrities promote their latest single. So spare us the wasted time and announce the results before the beginning of the next show.
    Or incorporate live voting during the show and announce the results at the end of the show.
    But do something to speed up the pace of the show.

    • Jason says:

      You do realize they are making money on the results show right?. They get twice as many episodes and advertising dollars for nearly the same price because they already have the production set up and the talent locked into deals so they don’t have to pay them more money! From a business standpoint it makes no sense to eliminate the results show!

      • Jongirl says:

        I really liked it when the results show was only a half hour long. I don’t even watch it now.

      • Name That Tune says:

        Results shows that are long and contain fillers don’t get viewers. The ratings game on conventional TV is about how many people continue to watch DURING commercials. So all that stuff in between doesn’t matter. And if you can get the information you want without watching the fillers you will do it.
        ABC has recognized that people are tired of results night and next season they are eliminating the results night for DWTS. So it can be done. I think it would create more interest in the show if you create some tension during the live shows. I might not be so quick to buzz by the commercials if I am spending my time voting either online, via text or phone. In a sense, this would create an organic way of limiting the voting.

  31. Jenny says:

    I like the limiting of votes. Make the crazy voters actually have to work to get the max votes.

    The themes need to be more defined. Songs of the 60s, Songs from the year you were born, etc are too general to find a song in your comfort zone. Those Idol moments are the ones where contestants like David Cook and Adam Lambert took super poppy songs and turned them upside down. The last few years the contestants haven’t wanted to or have been pushed to be nothing more than superior Karokee singers.

    Judges are also not the stars of the show. I like the idea of a couple of former contestants simply because they know the grind that it takes to be on the show. But we also need judges who will give constructive feedback. That was one thing that Simon did. Sure he was blunt, but if you listen to what he actually said it made sense. Simon pushed contestants to go outside of their comfort zone. Those are the type of judges the show needs.

    • It doesn’t matter what you name the theme when given a list of 12 pre-approved songs to pick from. The thing that may irritate me the most is contestants blamed for ‘song choice’ when they had none.

      • My Alter Ego says:

        Like in the final 3 or two, when the contestants have to sing the songs producers, judges, Jimmy, etc. select for them? And then endure the judges criticizing song choice? SMH!

  32. mia says:

    The best thing they could have done. Clean house, get some new people running it.

    • Bumm says:

      So At&T, Coke and Ford are gone? They hold the reigns of the show. At&T is solely responsible for the problems with voting. Coke is the most likely culprit for turning the show into a bland buffet of warmed over predictability since they only want a brand association happy feelings and dont do “challenging’ very well.

      And Ford, well, they are to blame for those asinine music videos and drive to meet the teacher from Glee skits that are the requisite way to shoehorn a car spot in there.

      Idol got too fat off those three and put the whole mess into cruise control, and here we are. Still no plan to fix season 13, just a lot of almost-but-not-quite-captians going down with the ship.

  33. Jason says:

    I knew the producers would be fired! There’s no way you can lose that much audience in one season and keep your job! It didn’t help that everyone saw through their pathetic attempt to secure a female winner by excluding good looking/ talented guys and only served to drive away the female audience that loves to watch good looking guys. Absolutely idiotic move on the parts of Lythgoe!! And what for so they could get Melanie Amaro part 2 as a winner!! She will probaly sell less then Scotty, David Cook, Kris Allen and even Lee!!

    Another idiotic move: Why four judges? Do they think more will get them each audience the four has? No. The audience just gets bored sitting through that much endless nonsense and chatter. They have forgotten the original mission statement of the show which iwas the record label’s audition process with honest, humorous feedback. The all contestant panel will not work. They really need Jimmy Iovine on the panel. They should have Lambert, Clarkson and Iovine. If they can’t get Kelly then Hudson would be Ok. Personally I’d rather see COurtney Love (who has recently quit drugs) on the panel

  34. Caro says:

    Getting rid of Lythgoe is a smart move! I didn’t really watch this year ( couldn’t stand Minoj) and haven’t watched the way I used to for the last few years but every article I saw on Lythgoe and AI made it obvious that he is clueless. AI had become a personality contest with bad judges and so-so contestants so I don’t see why anyone still watches. I can’t Jennifer Hudson so I doubt I’ll watch next season either!

  35. jane says:

    I hope that they change the way the top 10 is formed. Go back to the way they did in season 1-3 before they decided to break it down by gender. Then the best 10 make it. Bring back the wild card round, I missed it this year. And stop with putting people like Charlie, Sanjaya, and Zoanette through to the live rounds. It’s insulting to actual singers that get cut early.

    • SnoreBro says:

      These shows have to have a different type of crazy / unique singer(s). Charlie, Sanjaya, and Zoanette can all sing, not the best but they all have something different vs the cookie cutter types. Would you consider Michelle on The Voice to be like these singers?

  36. waffles says:

    Former Idol contestants as judges is a horrible idea. It’s like reality show inbreeding. I’d like to see judges with no prior AI connection to get some fresh blood and fresh viewpoints on this show.

  37. tstephen51 says:

    I really think the airwaves are saturated with talent shows and Idol should air every 2-3 years instead. Make it like the Olympics of singing competitions. Global Idol.

  38. Paul says:

    I’m not sure a judging panel made entirely of former contestants is the way to go—Win this show and maybe YOU’LL get to be a judge in five years!—but I think at least one former contestant on the panel is probably a good idea. Kelly would probably have the most insight into how ugly the industry can be, but Adam Lambert would probably be more frank and honest with the performers.

    I agree that theme weeks probably need to stay, and also agree that any song a contestant wants to sing should be one the producers jump through hoops to get clearance to use. I used to love many of the songs that have become staples of this show, and now I loathe them. If disco week comes around and a contestant wants to perform some deep cut from a 1979 Zimbabwe disco compilation, make it happen! You can learn so much about a singer’s personality and outlook by what they aspire to sing. When that singer only has three songs to choose from, and then gets bullied by Iovine into singing one of them, what good does that do anybody, viewer or contestant?

    I want this show to be good again. I miss watching it each week, even though I paid no attention to the two most recent seasons. Make Idol better and a lot of viewers will return.

  39. Whitegwg Out says:

    C’mon Michael! Ending blatant producer manipulation is essential. We need a fair performance order where they can’t have Holly perform first too often down the stretch, and Angie two weeks in row being the first contestant to be done singing while her peers get to make a last impression in before crucial votes. Plus who can forget the producer justice of giving the two Davids songs deemed top 100 ever while Syesha got a song from Happy Feet top 3 week. It was goona be an all David finale anyway, but Nigey wasn’t taking chances.

  40. Temperance says:

    The problem with the show is that it’s so plastic, to fake-looking, so little about the contestants (and all about making boatloads of cash for the producers), and thereby so clearly rigged it’s gone completely off-putting. The last two seasons I picked the winner at the women of their initial audition – the rest was just the fake drama to get them there (and boy was it fake). At least on the Voice, the talent is real, and it’s all (or mostly all) about the talent. And please, can we drop the horrible, horrible plastic sets, and the same – exact same – Seacrest patter. It’s all gotten to be a parody it itself. And then there are the judges…. *shudders* the worst part. Frankly, give three judges 20 seconds to comment per contestant and that’s it – cut off the mike. And cut off any griping and fire anyone that can’t get along. For that cash, it’s embarrassing.

  41. Tony says:

    Would it be pandering to this sight if I suggested Melinda Doolittle would make a great judge? Make it happen, Idol!

    • Of all the Idol alumni, Melinda Doolittle is the only one I’d like to see as a judge.

      • My Alter Ego says:

        Really?? Remember that Melinda wanted to “bless” Lazaro’s heart as he stood next to Candice “chawing his cud (gum)” (and, yes, “chaw” rather than “chew” was intended) when Michael wanted images of nuns doing dire things to students. (No, that’s not what he stated but you know, in your heart, that’s what he wanted. Michael, I adore you, but sometimes you’re far too thinly veiled. And I like that!)

        I adore Melinda. But the more I think about it, the more I’m convinced that she would NOT be comfortable as a judge.

  42. Mary says:

    Well not surprise, Ken should of been booted about 4 years ago. I could be wrong, and I am not sorry to see Nigel go, but I truly believe his hands were tied this year by the higher power. I don’t believe AI will ever have the impact it once did, but I think they can turn it around to make it an enjoyable show again. For all that is holy do not higher big names to fill those chair. I also do not want an all alumni judges. I think if they went with one big name, Keith, and two unknowns – they might get back to the original premise that it should be about the contestants. More music, make sure the judges have chemistry and make the result show a half hour and only have alumni perform. I hope the reboot in the right direction because I truly enjoy the show.

  43. joey says:

    2002.

    A summer replacement show airs. It’s called American Idol. A summer replacement show. There are judges: Randy Jackson and Simon Cowell. Who? There’s Paula Abdul. Oh yeah, she had a couple of hits in the 80′s.
    .
    It becomes a big hit, the biggest show on TV.
    .
    After 12 years for a variety of reasons it loses steam. How to fix it?
    .
    Beginner’s mind!
    .
    Make it a little show about finding an undiscovered star. Screw the big money judges. Screw the big time advertiser bucks.
    .

    Start small again. Discover some real undiscovered talent. Become a thing again. Then fade away again.
    .

    Then do the beginner’s mind again.

  44. T says:

    I am not certain this resolves Idol’s issues. This year’s talent pool was not the greatest. We had 2 top 5 finalists that were rejected twice earlier. I have 2 children who are teenagers and neither of them watched the show sporadically the last few seasons due to the lack of what they perceived as an interesting artist (sans Phillip Phillips since he sounds like Mumford and Sons) They have lost a market here in the NorthEast (right outside of NYC) teenagers. Idol does not satisfy their tastes in music and it has become cheesy and pageant like in their eyes. Angie Miller would come the closest to what they would buy/listen to. The show is only appealing to certain markets. Maybe fresh eyes/ears will recognize this.

    • lyn says:

      That’s partly because Nigel was convinced they could get a female winner without limiting the voting. So, he threw the baby out with the bath water. I’m convinced the judges were told to choose non contenders for the male singers. [Johnny Keyser cut again?].

  45. Liz Wright says:

    Don’t have the contestants sing just after they’ve been voted off, it’s so hard to watch!

  46. Valerie says:

    Buh-bye Uncle Nigel, don’t let the door hit you on the @$$….

  47. CathyEM says:

    I have not been impressed with the arrangements that Ray Chew has come up with — would love to see a new music director/band leader. His arrangements often seem dated and cheesy.

  48. Joe says:

    Maybe it’s time to have an American produce American Idol. All the British Invasion 60 nonsense was so ill placed on this show. It was clear there was a Producer driven directive to make theme weeks be about periods where he was a young man enjoying the music.

    I love Burt Bacharach, but there’s no need for his songs to be given a night.

    I mean, what happened to Broadway night? Or Country Night? Or Rock Night? Those are broad themes that encompass decades.

    Doing something ridiculous like songs of the Bee Gees or disco night limits the appreciation to a bygone era that doesn’t exactly need re-imagining.

    Slezak’s suggestions are spot on and Fox should actually consider him as a Producer going forward.

    If Nigel is truly gone, it’s a great chance for Idol to reboot. He’s been The Phantom of the Opera lurking in the wings the past seasons screaming “More Shirley Bassey! More Dusty Springfield! More Petula Clark!”.

    He was a bad fit. The ratings were never because of Nigel and his self indulgent themes. The ratings were people enjoy reality singing competitions and always will provided they show casts interesting artists year after year.

  49. Bob says:

    Will this mean that people like Jimmy Eye-Oh-Vine will no longer be on the show? Let’s hope so!

  50. KJohnson says:

    One thing I’d love to see is for the contestants to be given more feedback/help with the performance side of things. We had too much of standing still at the mike or sitting at the piano. And then we get to the finale and we see what these contestants can do with some help. Janelle and Perry, for example. Why did we have to wait until the finale to find out she had that sort of performance chops.