Ever since American Idol dimmed the lights on former co-host Brian Dunkleman in 2002, Ryan Seacrest has reigned supreme as the competition show’s sole host… until this week. Monday’s episode marked the first time in 17 seasons that Seacrest called out sick, which forced Idol mentor Bobby Bones to step up and fill in for the evening.
But perhaps “forced” is the wrong word here. After all, from the moment Bones came on board in Season 16, didn’t we all assume he was next in line for the gig? As the host of the popular nationally syndicated Bobby Bones Show, he’s already country music’s answer to Seacrest, never mind their physical and energetic similarities. I’m not questioning whether Seacrest was actually sick, but I am saying that it was hard not to think of Monday’s episode as Bones’ unofficial audition for the role of host.
And even though this is completely hypothetical, no one would begrudge Seacrest for wanting to trim down his schedule a bit. He currently co-hosts New York-based Live! With Ryan and Kelly, which films five episodes a week, in addition to hosting his own radio show, which is broadcast for four hours every weekday. And that’s ignoring the myriad things he’s developing through Ryan Seacrest Productions, which recently signed a multi-year deal with ABC Studios to produce scripted content for broadcast, cable and on-demand.
Following Bones’ one-off appearance as Idol host, TVLine polled its readers for their thoughts — and the results are telling. Sure, nearly 44 percent missed Seacrest in his usual role, but 23 percent preferred the change, while 33 percent didn’t even really notice a difference. In other words, more than half of our readers wouldn’t mind seeing Bones as a full-time host, which is more than I anticipated.
Then again, the American people have apparently always loved them some Bones, which was proven back in Nov. 2018 when he emerged as Dancing With the Stars‘ unexpected Season 27 winner.
Would you be open to the idea of Bones taking over for Seacrest full-time, should the current host decide to take it easy next season? Drop a comment with your thoughts below.