1.14.2009

Television: American Idol, Season 8

Yes, I'm watching this useless bit of clap-trap television. I have every year, despite my promises to myself that I won't. I always think, I'll just watch the train wreck auditions. But then I end up staying for the entire season. (The exception was the season that featured Jordan Sparks. I so couldn't stand her that I quit watching mid-season.)

Season 8 started yesterday evening with a visit to Arizona. Although AI has been somewhat revamped for this year, including the addition of a new judge, the first episode was decidedly lackluster. Even the few disputes were uninteresting. My husband theorized that everyone (that is, the judges) was on his and her best behavior as they got used to the new dynamic of working with another person, an untested chemistry. If so, let's hope it passes quickly so that they can get on with being entertaining. After all, at this stage it's as much about the judges being worth watching as it is about the potential finalists.

Paula does seem to have stepped up her game slightly, now that she has another woman to play off of. Newbie judge Kara DioGuardi has a fair amount of spunk and appears to be working out well; she has a nice blend of firmness and compassion, and yet she doesn't put up with the obviously ridiculous or the entitlement attitude that some hopefuls bring in with them like a cloud of overwhelming perfume. I was prepared to be unhappy with the tinkering of the show's dynamic, but I found I couldn't help liking DioGuardi.

Tonight, as I continue to watch, they're in Kansas City, and right off the bat there is a tad more cattiness from the male judges as they've told the first contestant--a girl who claimed to have a strong and emotional voice that surprises those around her--that she sounds like a cat that has been thrown off the Empire State Building. And so the second night is thus already off to a more entertaining start than the first. Let's hope it continues on this way, or else this is likely to become the season I manage escape velocity from the gravitational pull of this time-sucking black hole of a show.

1 comment:

Kalligenia said...

I ended up watching it again, too. I like Kara as well. I prefer her to Paula, but Paula does bring with her the soap drama amongst the judges.