January 13th, 2010
10:13 AM ET

'American Idol' is back

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“American Idol” returned in all its glory Tuesday night with the Boston auditions and the theme was simple: plenty of heart string tuggers with a sprinkling of the truly awful.

Die-hard fans know the initial shows are set up to feature the worst of the worst of the aspiring “Idols,” but this time around it seems we can prepare to be “Gokeyed.”

Last season contestant Danny Gokey was introduced with the tragic back story of a young wife whose death helped inspire him to follow his dream all the way to a third place showing.

On the premiere episode Tuesday we were treated to quite a few touching contestant tales and, like Gokey, they all could sing well.

Some standouts for me included 16-year-old Katie Stevens, 16, of Middlebury, Connecticut, whose stirring rendition of "At Last" started with her serenading her grandmother who has Alzheimer’s and ended in front of the clearly impressed judges.

There was also the movie-star handsome cancer survivor, Justin Williams. The 28-year-old vocal coach from Sandy, Utah, brought it with his version of “Feeling Good.”

Of course there was plenty to laugh at with the usual stinky-singer suspects, including right out of the gate Janet McNamara, 26, whose performance seemed more of a commercial for the “American Idol” video game than anything else. She appeared completely oblivious to her muffin top spilling out of her jeans as she delivered her “wicked awesome” version of “Pocketful of Sunshine.”

And with all of the talk of Simon Cowell leaving at the end of the season, the first show really drove home how integral he is to the process. No one, but no one can roll their eyes, make a face and shatter the dreams of the hopefuls with so much cocky finesse.


soundoff (111 Responses)
  1. lien tom

    Congrats gang rapper. You completed a course on how to act more like a normal human being instead of heathen ghetto trash. Most people can do this on their own without taking a class FYI.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:10 am | Report abuse |
  2. Ivan

    Love it n will love all the time!!!!!!!

    January 14, 2010 at 8:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. JacklynD

    I am waging a one woman protest. Simon Fuller treated Paula very badly. Kara is crass, lacks charm and egotistical. Why they chose Ellen to be on the show is a real mystery. She is not even in the music business so her opinion is no more valuable than mine.

    I like Ellen but in this venue she cheapens the show.

    January 14, 2010 at 3:59 am | Report abuse |
  4. Chuck

    HAHAHA.....RUPAL YOU ARE FUNNY!!!!!!

    "what's with the Ellen haters? Although she doesn't have a music background doesn't disqualify her. She hasn't even been on the show. What prejudice! By the way...Simon has ZERO music background other than knowing who is marketable."

    I like the part that says Simon has 'ZERO' and you capitalized the zero and then say other than knowing who is marketable...are you serious...that is a pretty significant part of being a judge wouldn't you agree? I can't believe you would would endorse a no talent dimwit like Ellen and discredit Simon's...and even mention the very important and very qualifying reason he is a judge...the real Rupal can't see talent and is annoying with the bad attempts at wit..so I guess you picked an appropriate name...had to fix your spelling too...this has a spell check so how did you misspell prejudice.....haha.

    January 14, 2010 at 3:00 am | Report abuse |
  5. Pat

    Why is this news? I mean, seriously...people need to re-evaluate their priorities

    January 14, 2010 at 2:47 am | Report abuse |
  6. Chuck

    I will watch the auditions to see all the people that can't sing make fools of themselves, but that's it. I am tired of seeing the crappy singers win, and the good ones go, because of a bad voting system and as of this year...really bad judges. Simon and Paula rocked...randy is a putz with stupid comments that are meaningless..Dog? new material please. and Kara talks way too much, like she is the show...4 judges...stupid, Ellen is a real joke...she alone will make people change the dial, except the daytime housewives (no offense housewives)...Simon leaving after this one says its a sinking ship and the rats are leaving haha. All this is now is a cash grab from all the teeny boppers with cell phones...looks like the cell phone company will be the only winner since people like Lambert and Daughtry get screwed by the phone companies...where is Hicks and Studdard????? I see Daughtry on the Idol website with a story about his platinum sales...no thanks to the voting system, yet Idol will post the story even though they allowed him to get screwed by the crappy voting system....so long Idol I will never watch beyond the auditions ever again.

    January 14, 2010 at 2:30 am | Report abuse |
  7. Garry

    you had to love the "Pants on da ground segment " Hilarious!

    January 14, 2010 at 1:23 am | Report abuse |
  8. theres

    American Idol is not same any more. Miss the easy and sassy bantering Paula and simon.

    January 13, 2010 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Damie

    overeaction to Ellen, she will add humor to the show and hopefully open the brick enclosed brain of the general public. There are plenty reality show that are simply burning electricity & airtime. AI, does give opportunity to the average Joe....

    January 13, 2010 at 9:50 pm | Report abuse |
  10. rosa

    I love Ellen she is funny and the show will be better, rosa from P.R.

    January 13, 2010 at 8:46 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Tom Tomasko

    My entire family watched it. We loved it and can't wait for tonights show. As usual Simon seems board and put out that he is there. I can't wait to see him go. I think Ellen will bring new energy to the show. All the producers need to find someone to replace Simon. Someone who is respected in the music industry with more charisma than Simon and who will have chemistry with the others. That's not hard to do considering....

    January 13, 2010 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
  12. IdolWatcher

    Kara was way out of line with the guy who was frustrated. She even made some comment about what is wrong with him and he makes her feel all creepy crawly or something like that. Well, maybe he has some issues as many people do and maybe you have to be at least somewhat tolerant of these people also. Maybe he was just having some fun, too. I think Kara should be removed I don't like her on the show or anywhere else.

    January 13, 2010 at 6:38 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Lynette Walker

    Simon is the whole sum of the show this season. Randy is Randy and is also fun to observe and listen to. However, in my opinion, the female judges are simply too wrapped up in themselves and are without music expertise of Randy and especially Simon. These women will never ever capture the hearts of the viewers as Paula did in spite of her mishaps/blunders.

    January 13, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Christy

    I've watched AI since episode 2 and I am having trouble getting interested in this season – Adam set the bar so high for vocals and performing skills last year that its hard to imagine anyone topping that. Ellen's pretty funny so I think she'll bring a freshness and levity to this show.

    January 13, 2010 at 6:28 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Diana

    for everyone who thinks Ellen shouldn't be on because she has no musical background–america votes for the winner and most of us have no musical background but we know what we like and so does Ellen.. She listens just like most of America... we should give her a chance, besides I am hoping she brings some humor to the show... and just imagine her with Simon.. should be interesting....

    January 13, 2010 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Blues Guy

    Ellen wasn't selected until well after these auditions last year. We won't see her until show goes live in next round.

    January 13, 2010 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
  17. THC

    I enjoyed the show! I think Victoria was thoughtful and realistic with her comments. think Kara D is terrific. She has an ear for music and you can actually see her vibe when the contestant is solid. I really like Paula and was prepared to miss her but surprisingly did not

    January 13, 2010 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse |
  18. momof3

    Agree with John Lubeck... ~ what did Victoria Beckham do wrong?? I think she was very sweet and always gave positive attitude to the contestants, I didn't see him being snobbish at all...

    January 13, 2010 at 6:03 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Annia

    I caught the last couple minutes of the show & impressed with the girl from Long Island, named, Lauretti or something like it. She sang BLUE SKY. I hope she goes far. Was not going to watch after the Gokey factor, but will check it out every now and then. Victoria Beckham was very professional. Simon, well, let me tell you this, if I make half the money he is making, I don't care if Hyenahs (sp?) come in and howl in country songs & doing the Macarena while they are at it, I'm going to enjoy & be thankful by it all. Don't care much for Kara. Glad Randy using less of "DAWG" this season. Oh, yeah, I checked out the recap on the internet, the one who sang AT LAST was awsome, too.

    January 13, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  20. bcfowlers

    last nite show was not bad. mrs beckham looks aneroxic. I will not be a faithful every week fan when Ellen G. starts judging. I enjoyed watching goofy Paula Abdul, who acts like a down to earth person. I will probaly watch the last 3 shows on DVR. Simon Cowell makes American Idol enjoyable. I will think about his replacement and get back with everyone

    January 13, 2010 at 5:55 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Idol Watcher

    Exicted to watch Ellen on there! Victoria as always, had nothing much to offer

    January 13, 2010 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
  22. John Lubeck

    Susan: I think your comment regarding Victoria Beckham is completely off base. Not sure how you possibly got that idea from her behavior.

    Other opinions I may agree or disagree, but I am interested also in the harsh comments on Ellen DeGeneres. I know little about her but what I have seen, she has been very funny. Is the dislike based on her sexual orientation? I hope not, as that to me is a sad comment.

    January 13, 2010 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Observer

    The guy who got upset because he had to wait too long- seemed to have an obvious case of Asperger's Syndrome. He was oblivious to how he was coming across-arrogant whiney etc..and Kara's reaction to him was quite understandable. I don't know the guy obviously, but have a lot of familiarity with Aspgerger's Syndrome (a high functioning form of autism). He clearly showed social blindness of sorts and seemed quite confused by their reaction to him. He had a sort of "head music" way of performing as well- good pitch, but no emotion coming through. It was painful to watch the interactions in this audition.

    January 13, 2010 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Em

    Wow, some of you are harsh, saying you won't watch AI now that Ellen DeGeneres is a judge. She hasn't even been on the show yet; you haven't even given her a chance! She's just as qualified as the other three to be a judge on the show. Honestly, had you ever even heard of Simon Cowell before the show? No. But Ellen is a household name and has been in the entertainment business for years.

    My guess is that the only thing you have against Ellen is her sexual orientation. NEWS FLASH: She isn't promoting some "gay agenda" and you and your family won't "become gay" just by watching her on television. I'm also pretty sure that she and Portia (her wife) won't sit there and make out or grope each other during the show.

    It's an entertainment show. Take it for what it's worth.

    January 13, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Kathy

    Not watching this season.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Michael

    Let's not judge Ellen until we see what kind of judge she is. She may end up being a good judge. If you read the Idol Website, you'll see that Ellen probably won't be there until the season starts live or possibly during Hollywood week. They're going to have a number of guest judges that they brought into the cities with them. These auditions happened last summer, possibly before Ellen was even available or fully on-board. As far as a replacement for Simon goes, I'd like to see another Brit – love the accent!

    January 13, 2010 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Michael

    I thought last night was good. Victoria, who has a musical background, stayed pretty much in the background, which is good, since she was only a one-time guest judge. I like Kara a lot and she's coming into her stride, since it's her 2nd season. Randy is a true professional and knows the music business inside and out. Simon can be cruel at times, and was a few times last night. I think he just needs to be a little kinder to some of the less qualified hopefuls. After all, there is a way to say "you haven't made it through" without totally crushing people and making them angry. Randy and Kara are able to do it, Paula, whom I don't miss at all and am glad to see gone, was able to do it. I've even seen Simon do it a few times. I like the fact that they focused more on the stories behind the hopefuls, even if they didn't make it through. It makes it a lot more interesting. I think some of the folks who made it through will go far, not only in the season but in their careers.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:40 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Molly

    Ditch Kara, Bean Pole Beckham and totally un-funny Ellen DeGeneres, and bring me back some Paula! I never thought I'd miss her, since she annoyed the h*ll out of me while she was on the show, but without her around for Simon to ridicule and reduce to blathering, the show was a snoozefest.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Mr. Izz

    Ellen wasn't on the show last night because, at the time of filming, it was not yet decided as to who the new judge on American Idol would be. Since the filming of this show was 8 months ago, they needed to have someone, so they picked guest hosts until they found someone to fill the slot in a more permanent manner.

    It was a great show though. My favorite was the big Italian guy with the fun family. I'm already rooting for him to win. We'll see how things turn out when they get to Hollywood though.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:33 pm | Report abuse |
  30. b1

    I can't wait for Ellen to be on the show!!! (Although I think Victoria Beckham did a great job last night) I haven't watched American Idol as regularly as I have in the past the last few years but I think Ellen will add some great entertainment to the show. I think Kara should be replaced by Victoria Beckham. And as for the "expert" criticisms... like others have said, at the point where Ellen comes into the show the judges have no power. And no one really pays attention to anyone's opinion except Simon's anyway. Even with the good points I think Ellen will bring to the show, American Idol will probably not last after Simon is gone.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  31. jack

    Stupidest, most boring grabge show on the planet! Couldn't hate it any more! I rather watch the weather channel covering rain puddles!

    January 13, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  32. AngieBaby

    To Ellen Will Be Great:
    If the judges didn't count and it was only the audience that mattered, all the singing contest shows would be doing just as well or better than AI. Regardless of what people say, It is Simon that brought an audience in the beginning – U.S. audiences had never seen anyone as blunt, rude and yet entertaining as him. Randy and Paula were the icing on the cake. I like Ellen, but I just don't think she will add much. if this was a showcase for comedians, I would pick Ellen hands down as a judge – but it isn't.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  33. helen

    I have watched for years, but Ellen will put a stop to that. I will not watch when she joins the cast.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Neferet

    i loved it last night. i think it was really funny and great. Some of the singers were amazing. But of course, i havnt bee on there yet

    January 13, 2010 at 4:14 pm | Report abuse |
  35. kmc

    idol will go downhill with Kara and without simon...Sad but true!!!!

    January 13, 2010 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Janet

    People, really. Read a book instead of watching American Idol.

    January 13, 2010 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
  37. next in line

    I love the last comment by Diffy to bring on Whitney Houston as a judge as this would definatley replace the ditzy Paula with the now crazy weird Whitney.

    Could you imagine Whitney listening to one of these Idol "hopefulls" singing one of her songs? I would pay money to see her expression of pain.

    Damn...

    January 13, 2010 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
  38. PH

    I DO NOT care for Ellen AT ALL (what was the logic behind this!) and will miss Paula! Not sure if I will even watch it after Ellen comes aboard as judge. This move and Simon leaving after this season will be the downfall of American Idol for sure! Not going to be the same show now – and how sad – it was great with a GREAT panel of judges up until now....

    January 13, 2010 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Fred

    I can think of a thousand people more qualified to be a judge on AI than Ellen Degeneres. Kara mixes it up with Simon enough–they didn't need to hire Ellen as a foil to him. AI may survive without Simon, but it will be a mere shadow of itself unless they can find someone who's equally as sinister. Hey, maybe that ass clown Russell Brand. He could take the AI boat to the bottom!

    January 13, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Ellen Rocks

    Ellen rocks. So excited to see her! Loved the show last night. I think Kara is going to get the Simon haters!

    January 13, 2010 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Diffy

    Bring on Whitney Houston as a judge when Simon leaves!

    January 13, 2010 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
  42. mooney

    I'm with fred030,only watch it to see ellen, when is she gonna be on. someone please feed beckham, that poor thing, does she really think skinny is sexy??

    January 13, 2010 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
  43. SP

    Oh god, please, I thought this abomination was gone. I see the lower IQ's coming out as we speak. People, you dont have talent, trust me. Not everyone can be famous and talented. Plus, I see this stupid show only makes certian people rich while making one hit wonders out of the local talent that shouldnt really be on stage. They are mostly a train wreck.

    If you truly have talent, then go through the heartache and hardwork all the other, truley talented people went though. For the more of you there are, the more it cheapens the trade.

    January 13, 2010 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  44. mj

    I missed Paula at first (didn't miss the slurring tho). However, I think Ellen is a great choice to fill her spot!! She is funny and caring.. and she will know how to handle Simon! lol It was a disappointment that she wasn't on last night but Victoria was ok (for a day or two). Oh and get rid of Kara! who likes her?? She is a little too annoying. And like who thinks AI will survive without Simon and Paula? I mean it just won't be the same without Simon's brutal honesty and Paula's kindness. And my guess is that this will probably be the last season as X factor will be pulling all the AI fans with it being way too similar and having Simon and possibly Paula as judges... and like AI just won't be the same without those two!

    January 13, 2010 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Usher

    I like Ellen too.

    Victoria was looking anorexic last night.

    January 13, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Doris

    I agree, without Simon...AI will not survive. He makes the show.

    January 13, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  47. Matt

    Ellen has the potential to be a great judge. It all hinges on her being honest with the contestants. If she can work her snappy whit but tone down her "nice-guy" attitude then I think she'll be great. But if she hangs back and plays it safe, much like she did when she judged on So You Think You Can Dance, then I think she'll fail. To the person who made the remark about her hopefully not pushing her gay lifestyle I feel sad for you. You just had to get that thinly veiled homophobic remark in there didn't you.

    January 13, 2010 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  48. siren4song

    I'll watch this year, while Simon is still on board. I like Randy. I liked Kara last year. Last night, however; she was a little too condescending for my taste. She doesn't need to look sideways with a smirky smile EVERY time someone is less than stellar. That got old fast. As for Victoria, I couldn't get past how amaciated she looks. Of all the Spice women she was the weakest, vocally. Why is she a judge? Her comments were mundane and she could use some humility. Right now, Randy is the only reason I'd watch next year, with Simon on the way out. I hope the guest judges on the coming episodes are more impressive.

    January 13, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  49. michelle

    Ellen was a guest judge on So You Think You Can Dance last season and she was excellent. Insightful, respectful of the other judges and contestants, and had some very thoughtful critiques. I think she will be a great addition to AI. I hope everyone gives her a chance. Unfortunately, I also cannot imagine this show w/o Simon so I'm sad about his departure.

    January 13, 2010 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  50. randi

    Although I didn't watch last nite... so looking forward to Ellen being on the show.....

    January 13, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  51. cjg

    Didn't miss Paula at all.
    Without Simon, though, the show will not survive.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Norkio

    Ellen may not be from a music background but folks, she has definitely paid her dues in the entertainment industry. She didn't just get a TV show one day for goodness sakes. I think she will be a great addition to the judging panel. Victoria Beckham actually did a great job filling as the "Paula" of the show – she gave positive reviews but didn't clap like a seal or go off about moonbeams and sunshine either. I'd prefer to see her take Kara's place honestly.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Rupal

    what's with the Ellen haters? Although she doesn't have a music background doesn't disqualify her. She hasn't even been on the show. What predjudice! By the way...Simon has ZERO music background other than knowing who is marketable.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  54. janis

    I cannot wait to see Ellen. Was very dissapointed she wasn't on the show last night. Her reaction to some of the contestants will be worth watching. Simon does make the show. Miss Paula. Randy I would miss also. I wait for Tuesday nights to watch. I have been watching the show from day one. Thank you American Idol.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Danny

    Loved the show last night. I'm a huge fan of the show and especially the first couple of weeks when they are just gettin started. I liked Victoria Beckham on the show. It won't be the same without Simon so I'll most likely not watch after this season. I like Ellen and hope this works for/with her. The dude with cancer really stood out as someone to watch for.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  56. enoughIsenough

    Oh god...please let this show and all other so called reality shows die a quick death...what has happened to good television? Parking Wars, Ice Truckers, A lot to love etc ..... this is television??

    January 13, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Cambob

    This may sound a bit odd, but I enjoy AI for the contestants, not the judges. Kaite Stevens and Justin Williams will both be fun to hear later in the season.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  58. Mel M.

    With the addition of Ellen Degeneres, they have lost me as a fan of the show. i will not be watching show again.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
  59. Andy

    Kara is way too into herself and is too serious.Simon plays his confidence with a great sense of humor. I don't care either way about Ellen joining the show.I've watched faithfully every season and will stick with the show even after Simon (huge loss) and will watch Simon's new show.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  60. cr

    Michele, it has nothing to do with hime being gay, he lost because the better singer won. If he wasnt gay you would say he lost due not being as popular, but because he is gay that is the excuse you use. GET OVER IT!!!!!!!!!! That term is worn out almost as much as a person of color screaming racia profiling.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
  61. Liberty Queen

    Lou Wingate: Ellen Degeneres is an excellent pick for AI and her being a Lesbian is an integral part of who she is as a woman and an entertainer. We don't mind straight folks like you long as you act Gay in public.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
  62. Jay

    I am sick and tired of this show. nothing but teenangers and kids watch this show. same story every year and the always manage to pick the wrong winner. Look at the guy with the white hair that won 2 years ago.. nobody has ever heard from him, or fantasia, or ruben. that show is a total scam.

    January 13, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
  63. starzzguitar

    How about Bikini Girl in a bikini as a judge? Just as good as Kara...

    January 13, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  64. bart barth

    Oh lets all just watch the first 5 shows and then make our comments to if it is as good, better or worse than the old American Idol Show. I dont like Ellen either, but who knows .. This is Hollywood and I have watched alot that I really dont care for and alot I thought I would not like and loved. Last nites show was the usual first show of the season (just so-so). We will have to wait and see. Good luck to all.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  65. fred030

    I really never watched AI, I always thought Simon was too mean. I tuned in last night because I thought Ellen was going to be on. When does she start?

    January 13, 2010 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Harley Mom

    AI is going down. Without Simon, the show will tank in the ratings. Before it does, get rid of Kara. She's terrible and Beckham didn't help. She looks like a scarecrow with too much makeup. Paula should be happy she doesn't have to endure this last year. After last year's ending, why even watch? I won't even tune into tonight's show. Too boring and the sidekick bimbos make me nauseous.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Susan

    Wasn't impressed.... There were a couple talented folks but we'll see how that goes....

    Victoria Beckham appeared very snobbish and uptight...I was quite surprised...let alone she looked like she's been starving herself to death. I just wasn't impressed...Paula and her "loopiness" as someone else put it made the show....It's time for it to be over anyway.... It will not survive without Simon....

    January 13, 2010 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Cole

    RH – I totally agree with you on Kara's unprofessional behavior last night to the contestent who waited all day to sing. ANYONE would have been a little frustrated, but she turned that poor guy's frustration into a confrontation. Saying "I don't like your singing, and I really don't like you" (or words to that effect) was over the top. And then to display such strong negativity revealed more of the lack of character in herself than the lack of character she was trying to attribute to the contestent. I've lost all respect for her, and never thought she added much to the show anyway. She acted like a schoolyard bully and I feel she owes that guy an apology. Yes, he had some attitude, but hers was so much worse. Who's supposed to be the professional? It certainly wasn't Kara...

    January 13, 2010 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  69. Michele

    I don't know why there is such a fuss about Ellen except that I suspect that it is the same gay bashing that robbed Adam last year.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  70. Dyann

    last night show was better than i thought it would be, but i must say paula's presence was missed. victoria looks to much like a doll but she played a goood part on the show, carrie pissed me of, they said that guy was rude but i thought he had spunk, and did infact have the goods to back it up. as usuall i t had a few people that just shouldnt show up for the show, like that anime girl that embarrassed her self on international tv. wel basically ellen should get a chance to show what she got. its an awesome show no matter what, because simon is there and he is great. I LOVE YOU SIMON!!

    January 13, 2010 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  71. momof3

    surprisingly ... I like Victoria Beckham. Contrast from her day to day looks (cold, stiff mannequin with NO smile), she actually is a very sweet person with positive attitude.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
  72. Toni

    All of you who are complaining that Ellen isn't a music professional . . . well folks . . . neither are you and you all have your opinions of who is good and who isn't. The Idol is chosen basically by those of us who aren't professionals in the music business. So all of you "professional music complainers" just cool your jets. Give Ellen a chance . . . you haven't even seen her on the show yet. Talk about judgemental!!! Please remember, Simon the Nasty, a "music professional" thought Jennifer Hudson wasn't that good. Goodness, now look at the Oscar winning child. So much for professionals.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  73. betty

    You who think Ellen cant be a good judge are clearly clueless. Ellen knows the entertainment industry and that is enough. Simon isnt a singer either and neither is Randy. Ellen brings something this show needs, someone to bite back at Simon. Ellen is a great host and a funny person and will bring the fun back to AI. As for Simon leaving, good luck with the XFactor!

    January 13, 2010 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Stef

    I agree with RH. Kara completely overeracted to that poor guy. I was initially on board with her joining the show last season, but she progressively wore on my nerves, and last night reminded me why. I love Ellen, and think, on the contrary, she is very musically savvy. She's no more a pro than Paula or Kara (need I remind you of that awful song she wrote for the winner that got zero airplay?). And she's fun to listen to, unlike...well, you know. I say give that poor guy another chance and put some duct tape over Kara's overrated mouth.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  75. JRossi

    It was very obvious that Simon can't even tolerate Kara.....maybe that's another reason why he's leaving. It's also been reported that he misses Paula...I do too!

    January 13, 2010 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Kevin

    Ellen won't kill this show as many believe. Simon leaving will be it's ultimate demise.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  77. John

    Kara is hot.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Bianca

    So glad it's back! Hated to hear Simon will leave after this season.
    I love Ellen and can't wait to see her on the judges panel. How can you not like Ellen? She's always so kind and respectful to all her guests.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Ryan

    Loved American Idol with Seacrest,Abdul,Cowell,Jackson.
    Hate Kara, even hate Degeneris more.
    Will not watch until X-Factor comes with Cowell (and hopefully with Abdul, and Jackson)
    There IS no American Idol now.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  80. Darrell

    Ellen will make the show, she is hilarious.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  81. frogger 07

    Not a fan of Ellen, won't be watching this year

    January 13, 2010 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Kim White

    Victoria Beckham seemed more interested in their fashion than in their talent....Didn't like Cara before and don't like her any more now than I did then.....Randy is lookin' fine with all the weight loss from his WLS...and Simon...well ...I just don't see American Idol existing without him....unless they bring in that Piers guy from Britain's got talent....he has much the same attitude as Simon and could possible take his place...if he's available...I was never a huge fan of Paula so sure don't miss her...but I was looking forward to seeing Ellen in this setting and was disappointed to see Beckham instead.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  83. Quinton

    Love American Idol!! Can't wait for Season 9 to heat up. I'm going to miss Paula, but I know Ellen will be exctiement to the show. Can't stand Kara. I wish they would let her go.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  84. Don

    I think there is an overreaction as to Ellen's effect on the show. She doesn't start until Hollywood, where the decisions by the judges (who gets into the top 24 – BTW, it's back to top 24 this season – and the "veto" of an elimination, assuming that's still there) are a group thing (or at least we're led to believe that). I think the only time Ellen will have any real power is if Simon, Randy, and Kara want to keep an eliminated finalist on the show, since that's supposed to be a unanimous decision.

    (And either somebody in the editing room wasn't paying close attention, or they finally decided to tell the viewers what happens if there's a 2-2 split – at one point, Randy said, "You need three Yes votes unless Simon breaks the tie." Ever notice they never show a 2-2 vote where Simon votes No – or, for that matter, when it's 2-2 with Simon voting Yes, they never show the final vote, but cut to a shot of the singer coming out of the room with a golden ticket?)

    January 13, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
  85. foxfan

    I'm not an "idol" fan especially now that ellen is on the show. She has brough trash to the show and will definately be the final straw to bring the show down. Too bad randy and ryan just signed a 3 yr contract with the show; stuck now boys.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
  86. passe

    Replace Simon with Snoop Dogg....Oh Yeah!!!!

    January 13, 2010 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  87. William

    The Death of AI can't arrive soon enough maybe we can get back to some quality shows instead of these rigged reality shows.
    As for Ellen, she might actually make it funnier for those of you who stick it out.

    January 13, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  88. Karen

    Thought it was just alright. I haven't really kept up with the last season or two, but moreso, not really a huge fan of the early auditions. Don't feel I need to waste my time with those clearly not in it for the talent, but just looking for their 15 seconds of fame. Will usually pick it up after a few weeks where the actual talent has been sifted out. As far as the judges though, please, please, please... somebody buy Victoria Beckham something to eat. Way too thin it doesn't look good. Also, considering the audience that is watching this show, a little irresponsible to put somebody on there with that unhealthy of a body size and will be perceived by young viewers as cool.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  89. Isay

    Whenever Kara opened her mouth, I have to mute the TV. I just can't stand her... Pls take her off the show.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  90. Ellen will be great

    I was never an american idol fanatic, but caught a show here and there in the past. Last season I think I saw probably 2/3 of the episodes. For all of you out there that think Ellen will be terrible because she has no musical background, I say that I (being a musical professional myself) would not consider Paula to bring any more to the table musically than Ellen. I can't say there's much skill or talent there. Experience, yes I'm sure. But I think Ellen will bring humor, and possibly more voters, which I think is what American Idol needs if they want to stay afloat after Simon leaves. And I think you are forgetting that regardless of who the judges are up there, it's all of us that are judging the contestants and deciding who stays and who goes. The judges are just there for commentary and opinion, and many times their "expert" opinion has nothing to do with music.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  91. Crystal

    I actually thought Victoria Beckham fit in better on the panel than Kara D...I'm not a fan of Kara...I'm curious to see how Ellen will fit in...though she isn't a music professional, she is well aware of fame and all it's ups and downs..I think she could be a good addition to the panel...she'll be hearing it as the audience does...not as the "professional music biz" guys do... I just hope this year isn't another disaster waiting to happen. I've been disappointed one too many times with the outcomes of some of the voting...Still gets to me when I think about the Daughtry season...

    January 13, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  92. RH

    Tell Kara to take a chill pill. She totally overreacted to to that guy who was upset that he had to wait so long. Yeah, he came off rather rough at first, but he chilled out. Her comments to him were inappropriate, especially about him never having a girlfriend. Bring Paula back!!

    January 13, 2010 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  93. Michele

    Well, you know what they say, too much of a good thing... I think this should be the the last season. I will miss Paula but, like Cara, Randy, Simon and don't know about Vic. I think Ellen will be a hoot and has a good sense of music. Should be interesting.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  94. Lou Wingate

    I think Ellen is funny on her show. As long as she isn't pushing her gay lifestyle I like her. Hopefully she will add something to the show. Give her a chance folks.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  95. Toots

    Had a ball watching last night...waiting for Ellen to arrive! I'll miss Simon.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  96. Barb

    Simon seemed quite bored and not into the show which put a damper on my watching it.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  97. Jazz Allen

    I loved Victoria Beckman on the show. I wish I would have heard one great singer or at least one really good one.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  98. Idols Over

    This show was soo boring. The singers they let through had no personality except for the Jim Morrison look alike guy, and were marginally good singers. When they do let good singers through they cut them in Hollywood. Paula's gone and so is the magic. At least watching her and Simon fight was entertaining. I'm bailing early.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  99. Tay

    Ellen is awesome and hilarious...if anything, she will make this show better.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  100. miss Paula

    Hated it. Without the loopiness of Paula the show has definitely lost some appeal. Simon seemed to be pretty much phoning it in. The Spice girl and the other one are pretty much non-entities. Ellen will be the death nell of this show. I've given up on what was a fun show.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  101. Pat

    It seems so long since May... I was very excited for the start of the Idol season. Did not like Victoria Beckam. Do not really like Kara D. either. I look forward to Ellen D. joining the judges, but do truly miss Paula. Not sure how much of this season I am going to watch. Overall, very disappointed.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  102. Grover

    This was the first Idol premiere I didn't watch since Season Three. Keeping Kara was bad enough, but losing Paula was unforgiveable. Idol without Simon is an oxymoron. As for Ellen? Meh. Take all this and add in the bitter aftertaste of last year's ridiculous conclusion (it's nice that Taylor Hicks isn't going to go down in history as the least successful Idol winner after all,), and this show is dead in the water – said water holding the shark over which Idol has well and truly jumped.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  103. Disappointed

    I DID NOT WATCH AI LAST NIGHT. I like Ellen, but she's not a music professional. I heard she wasn't even a judge last night. What's up with that? I wasn't a huge fan of Paula Abdul, but think the show is going to miss her. After Simon leaves, it's good-bye AI.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  104. Marc P

    I too am quite annoyed by any presence of Ellen on TV, i will not be watching Idol this year, or at best will switch channels during any Ellen intervention....

    January 13, 2010 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  105. Michelle

    Well I love Ellen she is really funny, and I think she will be great on the show

    January 13, 2010 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
  106. Molly Betts

    If American Idol replace Simon with Clyde Davis, Add Mariah Carey, Lady Ga Ga, and keep Dogg, it can still Survive.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
  107. cr

    Ellen Degeneres is going to be the death of American Idol. What a bad decision to bing her to the show. She has no background in music and will cause the distruction of AI.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
  108. d.murray

    Enjoyed every minute of it and can't wait for tonight. Victoria Beckham seemed comfortable and I was surprised at how well she fit it and did a good job. Of course Simon was GREAT and Randy as well. All in all they were all enjoyable....Hurrah for a good start to AMERICAN IDOL!!!!

    January 13, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  109. gel

    cant wait to watch it good job!

    January 13, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  110. Tammy

    I loved it last night!!! I am NOT a fan of Ellen Degeneres. so I was pleasantly surprised to not have to listen to her last night.

    January 13, 2010 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
  111. Omaha Reader

    love it love it love it... I'm so glad that it's back... can't get enough from AI...

    January 13, 2010 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |

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