May 26th, 2010
02:46 PM ET

Let us be thankful: 'Idol' prepares for the end

I have no problem admitting it: I can’t wait for this season’s “American Idol” to be over.

I have been underwhelmed with the show this year. (I can't even say I was "whelmed," things were that bad.) Blogging about "Idol" is usually fun for me, but this season it has just been downright painful – and I’m not alone in my assessment.

“It has been the worst, but I felt obligated to cover it this year,” groaned fellow blogger Donna Reynolds, who has written about the show since Season Two.

To that I say, "Amen, sister. "

Over and over, I kept coming back to one simple fact: with 100,000 people auditioning for this show, this is the best we could get?

The contestants seemed uninspired and uninspiring, the judges' chemistry never jelled and generally it just seemed like nobody much cared what happened this season.

At first I thought I was just suffering from the "Lambert effect” - I thought my expectations were raised after last year’s electrifying season.

Yet as the weeks went by and more and more fans starting sounding off on the Marquee blog and CNN.com, I realized that I was not alone in my “Idol” distress.

“People are not interested anymore because this year has been a joke,” wrote a commenter named Joyce. “I don't think it can get back to what it used to be.”

“The final 12 was pitiful,” offered a viewer named Kevin.

Early on I was excited about the potential of contestants like Andrew Garcia, but he appeared to implode before he ever took flight.

And while I also enjoy Crystal Bowersox and Lee DeWyze, who have made it to the Top 2, I wonder if they just seem great to me because this season was so bad.

I have to ask myself: Would Bowersox have been as awesome if she had ended up on the show in a year that had a Carrie Underwood, Fantasia or a Jennifer Hudson? (And Hudson didn't make it past the Top 7!)

Even judge Simon Cowell admitted to talk show host Oprah Winfrey that he was leaving the show because he was “bored.” I can only imagine that feeling was hastened by this season’s experience.

When Season Nine ends I believe it will be remembered more as “The Year We Lost Simon” than “The Year We Gained [Fill in the Blank] As an Artist.”

And that's pretty sad for those of us who have long loved "Idol."


soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. Shari

    Crystal is by far the better singer, and she is better off being runner-up. Her free spirit would be squelched by "conforming" to Idol producers. I only hope she doesn't change herself like Carrie did. (Although she along with Adam Lambert are my all time favorites.)
    \

    May 27, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  2. NCB

    your assessment is whack. this was the year for the independent artist to shine on Amercian Idol.

    http://www.waytoosick.com

    May 27, 2010 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |
  3. dtny

    I couldn't agree more w/ this article. By far, the most boring and dull year ever. I don't know anyone who even kept watching after the top 5. Last year, you couldn't wait to get home to see what Adam performed. Hope they change it up next year. The local DJ was giving away tix to the Idol tour, he asked if are they for this years contestants..when told yes, they all groaned and said UGH! Who would pay $100 to see this top 10? I'd rather watch paint dry. More fun

    May 27, 2010 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  4. May

    I couldn't get through to vote for Bowersox yesterday. Go to the American Idol web site and try to find a phone number without watching a video. I didn't find voting info there. Voting FAQs didn't have info, click went to another page. But I get it this year, the one who is certain to get a contract will lose to the one who probably wouldn't. that way there are two winners. Two years now, the finalist who's appears the least radical/liberal won.

    May 27, 2010 at 7:03 am | Report abuse |
  5. Susan Parrish

    i am disappointed in the winner-same old,same old. i was looking forward to having janis back again. bob dylan or tom petty never would have won american idol...where would we be without them?

    May 26, 2010 at 11:01 pm | Report abuse |
  6. sduw

    Yeah!!!!! Lee Won!!!...I am not a young chick and I have been involved in music for a long time.....Crystal has talent and can move a crowd and that is no doubt..but I agree with others...I think she would rather sing in a bar room setting. Lee has made the most progress....He has done a great job and will make a great American Idol....Yes!!..the man CAN sing and YES..he can move an audience...I love his music and congratulations son!!....Good Job!!

    May 26, 2010 at 11:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Nikki

    I liked this season. The season with Fantasia and Jennifer Hudson was the most painful. Let us not forget the horror of Megan Joy from last season. I've always preferred people who actually sing, as opposed to those who scream at the top of their lungs with no regard for the melody whatsoever....

    May 26, 2010 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
  8. kyfan

    So glad that Lee won...it was soooo close...less than 2% margin between the two for the finale...I thought the show was great tonight, and really liked them both. They will both do well.

    May 26, 2010 at 10:25 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Karen

    I enjoyed the finale. Great talent and highlights. Interesting mix of older artists and contemporary. Good to see the Pants on the Ground again.

    May 26, 2010 at 10:23 pm | Report abuse |
  10. TLO

    Yep, Mama Sox should have won. Wrong again this year. Too many young girls power voting for their favs.

    May 26, 2010 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Karen

    YES!!! Go Lee!! he deserved to win. Lee just needs a few good songs and the opportunity to prove himself. Crystal will do great too, but all her stuff sounds the same to me and I get the feeling she'd rather be in a smoky bar doing her own thing.

    May 26, 2010 at 10:20 pm | Report abuse |
  12. OH no

    Boy they got that wrong. Crystal was better from beginning to end, She blew him away last night! Popularity over talent....AGAIN. When will we learn? Popularity over talent.

    May 26, 2010 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Greek

    The show will remain, may get a bit more popular despite Simon leaving.... Lee should be the winner, although if not he will be a bigger star than Chris Allen....was supposed to be – but wasn't..... AI will go on for a few more years.... people are caught up in the reality... and music is the most popular form of expression....

    May 26, 2010 at 9:44 pm | Report abuse |
  14. jbitson

    I hope it boils down to not who is has the best stage presence, rather who's album would the voters buy. This year's Idol was a dissappointment for me. There were no performances that send a chill down my spine as there was in prior years. I appears that the judges picked contestants who were good but not great. With tens of thousands of people trying out for a spot on the show why is there no superstar in the finals? I hope next year will yield some more impressive results.

    May 26, 2010 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Laura

    American Idol season 9 didn't have the wow factor. I think Lee will win because the teens and older girls will vote for him. Lee is more marketable than Crystal. I wish them the best.

    May 26, 2010 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  16. jean2009

    Bowersox should win this, she is the best...but who knows! A phone in winner leaves much to be desired when the whole thing should be based on who is really the best not who a bunch of teens think is hot. For too many years IDOL has not got it right and they are paying the price. Crystal Bowersox will be a star regardless of who wins.

    May 26, 2010 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Bella

    To say that Crystal would not stand up to past contestants such as Carrie Underwood and Fantasia only show you lack in a musical ear. She and Lee are both better than most of the other contestants that have appeared on Idol. She has great vocal – actually outstanding vocals, stage presence and is at least very true to herself. While Carrie Underwood has gone far look at how much she has changed herself to fit Hollywood. I thin this season has had phenomenol talent – maybe you should pick a new show to critique!

    May 26, 2010 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Keisha

      I see that you have no sense of real music because Crystal can't even stand up to the like of Carrie underwood, Fantasia and/or Jennifer Hudson.. She is well below those standards and the only reason everyone likes her so much is because most of the top 24 and top 12 sucked soooo much that what little talent she does have made her stand out. But if they had left Lilly and some other contestants that actually rocked it in hollywood to be in the top 24 then Crystal wouldn't even had made it this far. This year has been the worst that AI has seen in years and will never be the same now that Simon is also leaving. Plus anytime Simon himself admits that the show has bored him to death lately that should tell you something.

      May 26, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  18. hannah1

    We won't watch tonight because we cannot STAND to look at big, fat, toothless Bowersox. Cannot stand the sight of her. She has $$$ for tattoos and mouth studs, but not for the dentist. Pig!

    May 26, 2010 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bella

      Would love to see a picture of you!!! Bet you are a class act.....

      May 26, 2010 at 5:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      Why don't you comment the things that matters in this contest? For your information, it is; The Voice. So in a few years when you hopefully have grown a little, you will understand more...

      May 26, 2010 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Fred

    The only reason I'll be watching the finale is to see how Paula will ham it up on the Idol stage with her swan song and tribute to Simon. I could care less who wins this season. This year was horribly dull due to contestants that would have barely made the top 12 in previous years. They lack stage presence and or personality. In any case, it's doubtfull that either will greatly impact the music industry in the upcoming years.

    May 26, 2010 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • bella

      Fred – I would bet just about anything that you are dead wrong – they will go far – they have true raw talent and are not afraid to be themselves...

      May 26, 2010 at 5:35 pm | Report abuse |
  20. SALLY WAVELAND,MS

    I REALLY ENJOYED THE SHOW THIS YEAR LIKE THE PASS SHOWS, BUT IT WILL NOT BE THE SAME WITHOUT SIMON HE MAKES THE SHOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GOOD LUCK SIMON YOU ARE A GOOD MAN, I CAN TELL BY YOUR INTERVIEW ON OPRA.

    May 26, 2010 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Tom

    No, I can't fully agree with the thought that this year's Idol is such a bomb. I have felt that the last 2 or 3 seasons before this year have been disappointing overall, and I do think there have been seasons where the top 10 or 12 were better as a group than this year's–but I think we had some good talent this year nonetheless. And to suggest Bowersox might not measure up so well to the best of the best in past seasons?–um, it's all opinion, to be sure–but I'd stack her up to them any day, at least in terms of the musical genres each sounds best in.

    May 26, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  22. May

    Once again I fear Idol will not chose the person who should be the winner, Bowersox.
    Her voice and stage presence is much stronger than Dewyze. American Idol voters aren't into who is the real talent has been proven almost every season the show has been on.

    May 26, 2010 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |

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