Film & TV

Five Reasons Why American Idol Sucks This Year

American Idol has never exactly been Masterpiece Theatre, nor has it ever been known to be cool and trendy (Rock Star Supernova please come back). That hasn't stopped it from being a worldwide phenomenon and the top rated television show in the United States since its inception in 2002. In fact, it's American Idol's uncoolness that probably made it the success that it was.

American Idol was originally supposed to be a platform to catapult talented young unknowns into stardom, but surprisingly, the judges reaped the biggest payoffs of the show. Caustic Simon Cowell, ditzy dancer Paula Abdul and straight man Randy Jackson were always the big American Idol draw.

Things have changed at Idol-land and Cowell and Abdul have now been replaced by Aerosmith front man Steven Tyler and celebrity diva Jennifer Lopez. One would think that this would be a great revamp of the American Idol franchise, but in reality it's the start of Armageddon.  Here are five reasons why this new season of American Idol sucks:

1. The Inmates are Running The Asylum

In past seasons of American Idol, Simon Cowell kept the show moving along. Sure there was time for silliness and insane auditions, but these crackpots got about 15 seconds of face time and then it was time to move the show along and try to find real talent.  This time around the crazies are left to go on and on. Hey guys? This is American Idol, not American Nutjob.

2. You're Not Talented, Please Don't Beg

I understand that some of these contestants have pinned their hopes and dreams on whether or not they win American Idol.  I get that this might be their only shot away from a life doomed at the local mall. I also know that since hundreds of thousands of hopefuls audition, not everyone is going to make it. That means that if you can't sing, you can't sing.  Period.  Please don't beg and judges - please don't crack under pressure. You're choosing the best singers, not who's life sucks the most.

3. Where's J.Lo's Bitchiness?

Jennifer Lopez has quite a reputation in Hollywood as being a complete and total diva.  Rumors abound of her ditching her men, demanding on-call helicopters and diamond-encrusted headphones at events and even being a bad tipper (heinous)! So I was pretty excited to see her really crack into some of the deluded contestants on American Idol by being truthfully harsh (I'll also take completely mean). I wanted drama! I wanted pathos! I wanted to see some tears! And I did -- only to my shock and disgust they were J.Lo's.

Turns out J.Lo can't say "no" to even the worst contestant. If I knew that, I would have borrowed some crutches and tried out! I'm sure my off-key rendition of "I Touch Myself" would have completely worked if I told her I stepped in a landmine on the way to auditions.


4. Steven Tyler Can Get Really Creepy

Now don't get me wrong here. I love Steven Tyler. I think he's completely sexy, is a true rock star and has one of the best screams in the business. I also know that Steven loves the ladies. Nothing wrong with that at all. In fact, I thought it was totally rad when on "Audition Day One" Steven encouraged Randy to try to look up Jennifer Lopez's skirt. The creepy thing is that Steven is flirting with the contestants -- including the underage ones.  With contestants as young as 15 years old this year, Steven is flirting with girls young enough to be his granddaughter (yes, I went there). It's creepy. And could lead to serious jail time.


5. No Simon Cowell

Here's the giant pink elephant in the room. What nobody wants to talk about and acknowledge. Simon Cowell was American Idol. Sure, American Idol discovered Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia, Clay Aiken, Daughtry, Kelly Pickler, Carrie Underwood and more. But we really watched to see this caustic Brit take down these 18-year-old snot-nosed self-absorbed punks a few notches. Simon knew that to make a thoroughbred you have to first "break" the horse and that's what Simon did best.  Now American Idol is just a lovefest -- and a snoozefest.  Maybe things will turn for the better, but as of now, Spongebob Squarepants has more "edge" than Idol.   



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Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times, covering the restaurant and bar scene in South Florida. She has been featured on Cooking Channel’s Eat Street and Food Network’s Great Food Truck Race. Doss won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature on what it’s like to wait tables. In a previous life, she appeared off-Broadway and shook many a cocktail as a bartender at venues in South Florida and New York City. When she’s not writing, you can find Doss running some marathon then celebrating at the nearest watering hole.
Contact: Laine Doss