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Posts Tagged ‘Barry Manilow’

Howdy!

With the 7th Season of American Idol looming the distance, the Rewind of Season 2 just about to premiere, and other Idol competitions going on continually around the globe, I’ve been doing some thinking about the franchise in general and our version in particular. From what I’ve read, not all Idol competitions are conducted in the same way – for example, contestants in other countries are allowed to play instruments while performing. Also, over the last 6 seasons, there has been a lot of adjustments made in the American format, some good and others not so good.

Since the last season brought much criticism and lower ratings, perhaps this is a good time for the average fan like myself to play “Thursday morning director” and make some suggestions as to how the show can improve before it begins its next outing. Who knows – maybe someone will be listening…?

Here are three suggestions for the honorable producers to consider – if they haven’t already done so:

1) Bring back the Wildcard round!
I believe this step in the competition was used for the first 3 seasons and then dropped in favor of the 12 guys/12 girls elimination. I think it could still be used because it could give one guy and gal, particularly one who may not have gotten a lot of air time up to this point, another chance at the final 12. Remember, if it weren’t for the wildcard, Clay Aiken would never have made the finals in Season 2.

2) Bring back the Guest Judge/Mentor!
I know I’m bias but Barry Manilow is the best example of this. When he was asked to be a judge in Season 3 he asked if he could work with the contestants and the rest is Idol history. However, probably because of Simon’s alleged dislike of guest judges, the mentors only show up to work with the group and then disappear (or reappear on the results show to hawk their new CD). I believe if a mentor has spent time helping the cast, he or she should get a final say on their performance. It also gives the fans another view of the performance, especially during the middle of the season when we are sick of the usual “I’m feeling it, dawg,” “You’re so special” and “You’ll never make it in this competition” type of dribble. A fresh set of ears is a blessing at that point. (BTW, Barry was on Seasons 3 & 5 so that means he should be back again this year – especially if there is a 70’s night! He has proven to be the best mentor on the show.)

3) Give us less bad auditions and more of the Hollywood Rounds!
Last year the producers, in perhaps a drunken stupor, decided to chop up the Hollywood Rounds and condense them into one night because it wasn’t “good TV” – thus not allowing the fans to see more of the talent or back stories of the contestants (a HUGE complaint about Season6 in general). The editors should be able to combine and compile enough film on these rounds to both keep us interested and provide us with the emotional angst to get us behind our favorites. On the flip side, the ever increasing number of bad audition shows really don’t keep fan tuned in the rest of the season because the folks who fancy those episodes are all about watching train wrecks than good singing. The fans who vote passionately are the ones that should be served or they will continue to fall away as they did last season.

Ultimately, the main focus should always be on the contestants and their quest for the title. The more we know about them and their road to Idol, the more invested we become in their outcome. The show has proven that it can produce that type of TV and get both great ratings and loyal viewer. They can do it again. I’m sure of it. Sometimes returning to one’s roots is the best thing.

Now, may some of you out there have your own “three wishes” for the upcoming season so why not share your vision with the rest of us? Let us and TPTB know your concerns and maybe it will help to give Idol the boost it needs going into Season 7. Leave your comments below and let the voice of the people be heard!

Carry on!

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