Wednesday, April 04, 2007

musings (yes, musings) on american idol

First, I have to admit that I haven't really watched Idol since the first season. (And let me tell you, I knew Kelly Clarkson would win from the moment I saw her first audition. That girl's got pipes!) But, you know, you can't help but keep up with it because it's all over the place. Even for me, a person who no longer owns a television, I see Idol updates nearly every time I open Yahoo. Which is why I'm coming to you now.

I was looking at a picture of this Sanjaya character who, the Yahoo News headline claims, is the saviour of Idol, and it occurred to me that, given the opportunity to vote, the people in this country tend to support a much less homogenous group of people than the entertainment industry likes to shove down our throats when it picks its own "stars."

Think about it: black kids, fat kids, racially indeterminable kids who look like Sideshow Bob (I'm talking to you Justin Guarini), Indian kids like Sanjaya and even Clay Aiken. Clay Aiken! He's like a gay, showtune-singing Howdy Doody: and the people LOVED him!

Meanwhile, the entertainment industry has really studied these things and "knows" that the public will respond best when different types of people show up in different types of roles: the beautiful, blonde white girl goes HERE (romantic leads, for example), the fat black chick goes HERE (bossy buss driver with a heart of gold), the wise cracking black guy goes HERE (sidekick for white hero), the chiseled white guy goes HERE (said hero). Where does Guarini go? Sanjaya? Clay Aiken?? They don't really have slots... maybe they go in the background of a commercial meant to look multiethnic. Who knows. But in Idol, they go to the head of the pack, they go to number one (or two, whatever).

Anyway, without putting a lot of thought or research into this, I'm willing to suggest that the people who vote for American Idols are also voting for a less homogenous picture on television. They're voting to see more of something familiar. Less of something prepackaged and decided in focus groups. It gives me the tiniest glimmer of hope for the future.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clay Aiken is Hot and adorable, but more than that he can sing better than anyone that we;ve seen in popular music in decades.

5:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with the previous commentator. Clay has the most incredible voice in show business right now. To the blogger; if you haven't seen Clay perform, especially live, then don't make those stupid comments. Clay is the most versatile, witty, energenic, smart AND talented of any contestant from AI. Check out the thousands of videos on The producers know it and most of the fans of that show know it, too. Most think his will be the longest career of any one else from that show.

7:40 PM  
Anonymous BlogBlightBuster said...


This blog is infested with blogblight: n. Malicious lies, half-truths, distortions and insinuations perpetuated mindlessly by bloggers publishing misinformation, photos or video from each others blogs, or the tabloids, with no thought to the veracity, authenticity or libelous nature of the content.

The blight bloggers range from professional journalists (who should know better) down to the celebrity gossip hacks. Similar blight occurs in the other news media (tabloids) as well, but is more pervasive on the internet because of the anonymity accorded many of those who perpetuate it.

Blogblight undermines one of the basic values of the internet, information sharing. Rather than seeing legitimate and accurate information, internet users see blogblight instead.

This blog also has a bad case of DumBlight.

7:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Intelligent people do not watch American Idol. Period.

5:00 PM  

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