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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Last Thoughts on American Idol (I Promise)

I know… blather blather blah blah… I have talked about this season of American Idol more often than any on this blog. But the truth is, I’m so struck with idol fever this year that I’ve gotta write about it one last time.

According to all the prediction sites, it’s neck and neck in the voting so anything could happen tonight. Kris seems to have the slight edge, as I thought he would, though honestly he’d be better off coming second because if he manages a victory I imagine the headlines for him are going to show quite a bit of bias. After last night I think it was clear to anyone who the global superstar is. Sure, I like Kris. He could have a couple hits in America given the right material, but I don’t think people are going to be as devoted to him next year or the year after that. A talented as he is (and a genuinely nice guy, it seems), he’s not particularly unique. Play a Kris Allen song after a Jason Mraz song on the radio and that will become pretty apparent. In the context of the competition he’s got a fantastic come-from-behind story. In real life? Well, we’ll see.

On the other hand, Adam has already won. If he gets the official title tonight, great! (I voted until midnight… is that pathetic?) But, if he loses, he’ll still be the winner in every aspect but the title. He’ll be the one on the magazine covers. He’ll end up being the focus of the articles. Freed from the constraints of “unfairly influencing the contest,” the media will leap all over him, forgetting Kris quickly after he’s crowned. He’s easily the most “controversial” (I prefer “electric”) figure the show’s ever had and he’s all but monopolized the press for the past few months. I say this not as a fan (which…ahem… I am), but as fact. Anybody that disagrees has been living under a rock. The official title has become somewhat meaningless, no matter who wins.

Forgetting winners and runners-up, I’ve just gotta say how incredibly gratifying last night was. I never thought I’d hear the phrase “glam rock” in the context of American TV, especially the number-one watched show in the country. I never thought someone like Adam--the definition of fundamentalist kryptonite--would be considered a frontrunner for anything. And then, after the crappy coronation songs ended, came Glee… a smartly written comedy series about a show choir (A. Show. Choir.) given the pimp spot after perhaps the most watched episode of the most watched series of the year. As the blissful choir misfits sang at the end of the pilot (and sang un-freakin-believably)… Don’t Stop Believin'!



UPDATE: Well that was awkward, wasn't it? I think even Kris was like... "really?" It's inconceivable to me that after the performances tonight (the best in Idol history, btw) anyone would fail to see what staggering talent Mr. Lambert has. Oh well, Kris is unthreatening, cute and--most importantly--totally straight.

3 Comments:

Blogger Tom Q Public said...

An excellently written post, and not just because I agree with everything you said. ;-) I can see Adam having much more commercial success than Kris (not unheard-of for a runner-up or lower-ranked finalist), so it doesn't really matter which of the guys won the title. Such a fun season that I almost can't wait for it to start all over again in January!

-T

10:59 PM  
Blogger Paul said...

Having only watched the youtube clips of Kris and Adam, i haven't really caught onto the whole drama behind the voting, and rather shallowly (is that even a word) wanted Kris to win because he is pretty. No other reason. However, i did watch the finale (the first full ep i've watched this year) and was totally won over by Adam. Ultimately i think free from the constraints of the winning title he could really bloom into something special. XOLondon suggested he work with The Ark - now that'd be something amazing!

5:26 AM  
Blogger Gumby said...

It's sad Adam lost. The main reason I've disliked American Idol in the past is because its method produces pretty singers but seldom true real superstars. I've been waiting for American Idol to find the next Freddy Mercury or Michael Jackson, someone undeniably talented but unique, and until this season I've never seen one. Adam is the first real true musical genius they've found and America ultimately failed to recognize him--at least last night. We'll see in the future.

This is why I was surprised David Cook won over Archuleta last year and why I wasn't shocked when Jordin Sparks won over Blake Lewis in 2007. It seems cute and safe usually tends to wins over new and interesting.

8:34 AM  

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