Around the 7th season, the novelty of the show started to wear off, and with the exceptions of the adorable David Archuleta and the glam-rock style of Adam Lambert, the talent presented didn’t stand out like it did in previous seasons. Let’s be honest, the talent got boring, so people stopped watching. I, too lost interest in the 7th season. In the 8th season, the show attempted to make things interesting by adding a 4th judge, songwriter Kara DioGuardi. Abdul was ousted in the 9th season, and her replacement was comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, which, although DeGeneres has a likeable personality, left viewers wondering “Why is she judging a singing competition?” DeGeneres, DioGuardi (she wasn’t received well by the audiance) and show veteran Cowell were out at the end of the 9th season. Cowell went on to host the next UK originated competition show brought to America, “The X Factor” and brought back everyone’s favorite nice judge Abdul leaving Jackson on the American Idol island all by himself, dawg.
There also was a new wave of competition shows on the rise boasting star power. With ”The X-Factor” having judges Cowell, L.A. Reid, Britney Spears, and Demi Lovato (Lovato and Spears are replacing Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger,) CBS’s “The Voice” having Christina Aguilera, Maroon 5’s Adam Levine, Cee-Lo Green and Blake Shelton, and “Duets” with Clarkson, Robin Thicke, John Legend, and Jennifer Nettles, Idol began to face stiff competition.
Initial reports by People Magazine and other news outlets stated that Mariah Carey is in serious talks to be a judge on the show. Carey was originally in talks to be a judge on “The X Factor” with Cowell and Reid confirming her involvement with the show, but season one came and passed, with no Carey in sight. There have also been reports from various news outlets including Rolling Stone Magazine that the Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin has expressed interest in being a judge for the singing competition. Canadian-born singing superstar Celine Dion and the reigning Queen of Hip-Hip Soul Mary J. Blige’s names have also been shopped around for the opportunity.
Carey would serve as a necessity to the show. Aside from bringing her legions of unwavering fans to the TV sets every week, Carey is an accomplished and well known SINGER, something the judges table has been missing in all 11 seasons. Plus, we all know Carey will bring some personality to the table, and anyone who has watched her in an interview knows this. She has a larger-than-life diva mentality with bird tendencies, (example: ”Them chickens is ash & I’m lotion”) a grade A shade thrower, still acts and dresses like she’s 18-years-old, and can talk for days with her New Yorker/I’m a Diva, dah-ling accent. Carey can bring back ratings and breath new life into the show.
Franklin, renowned as one of the greatest vocalists of all time, too will fill that void of having a true vocalist on the judges panel that Idol lacks. I also see Franklin being 100% honest will each and every contestant like Cowell was but not as mean, yet giving words of encouragement to all of the newcomers (listen to Trey Songz’s debut album “Just Gotta Make It” to see what I mean.) Being the music legend that she is, Franklin will also bring her loyal fans to the show, opening the door for the show to win older viewers.
In all, American Idol is going to have to pull out the big guns (and MILLIONS of dollars) in order to be #1 again and compete with the other singing competition shows on TV.