AMERICAN IDOL’s Lose/Lose Conclusion

By: CT

When it came time for AMERICAN IDOL to crown a winner, it was something of a lose/lose situation for the show… unless, of course, you factor in the endless amounts of publicity generated.

Had Adam been declared the winner, a cry would have gone up across the “red states” of this land that left-leaning liberals (including, of course, those pushing that all-powerful conservative bogeyman know as the “gay agenda”) had rallied their forces to put the sexually ambiguous, eye-liner wearing showman in the top slot.

Even before Kris claimed the IDOL title, the universe — and, more specifically, the twitterverse — was abuzz with accusations that the underdog was being undermined by both the Adam-favoring judges (Simon had all-but declared Lambert the winner weeks earlier) and the gay-friendly “blue state” crowd. Some likened media coverage of Lambert’s track to assumed-victory as the latter days of the presidential campaign, when the media was often accused of being “in the tank” for now-president Obama.

In reality, what happened was that for the first time in ages, IDOL wound up with two amazingly talented, equally-deserving crooners, one a Freddy Mercuryesque showman, the other a more subdued singer in the style of Jason Mraz. (Let’s face it… 2005’s Hicks vs. McPhee showdown didn’t exactly have the country poised on the edge of their seats.) And in a situation like that, no matter the outcome, there’s going to be a group of wildly disappointed folks ready to cast aspersions on the whole process.

And in the end, does winning really even mean all that much? Runner-up Clay Aiken has had a better career — or at least remained more visible, if often as a punchline — than winner Ruben Studdard. And 7th-place finisher Sanjaya Malakar — better known for his oft-changing hair than his ability to hold a tune — has managed to stretch his 15-minutes of fame by appearing on the upcoming season of I’M A CELEBRITY… GET ME OUT OF HERE!, while his season’s runner-up, Blake Lewis, has practically fallen off the radar. As with all reality TV, it’s not whether you win or lose… it’s how well you capitalize on your time in the spotlight.

Both Lambert and Allen will have a shot at becoming stars. And given his flamboyant style as both a singer and performer, Lambert may well be better off outisde the pop-star factory that is IDOL, given its tendency to try and package stars in boxes they don’t necessarily fit into. But most important of all, now that this all-important contest has come to its unpredictable conclusion, we can all spend the day offering our critiques of the outcome before preparing for what we’ve really been waiting for: tonight’s debut of the far-superior, if not as well rated, SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE!

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  • Lindsey Morrison

    Adam Lambert Will be bigger than Kris in CD sales.

  • Victoria

    I’m glad you think that way too. I find myself getting really excited for the American Idol finale simply because i know that when AI is over that means So You Think You Can Dance is starting.

  • ct

    Lindsey: I completely agree. I think that I’d rather watch Adam perform, just because he’s fascinating in a chameleon like way (and talented, very talented) but if I was going to listen to something over and over, it would totally be something Kris put out. Adam is more a novelty act to me.

  • Jennifer

    I was so glad to see Kris win just because the judges were so insistent that Adam was going to win. And Simon not standing up for Kris was just awful.

  • Mike

    Mark my words….Adam will be cast in a company of “We Will Rock You”, the Queen/Ben Elton musical… You heard it here first….

  • Linda

    I love them both! I was an Adam fan from Hollywood week; but the first time I heard Kris sing “Ain’t No Sunshine” I told my husband – “he’s the sleeper that could pull this off”. Needless to say, I’m very pleased for both of them, and can’t wait for both CDs.

  • veedee

    Love AI but SYTYCD is hands down the best reality show!

  • Josh Emerson

    I don’t think you can say politics played any part in the result. Most people vote simply based on whose music they enjoy. I’m a liberal blue-stater who voted for Kris and was ecstatic (and shocked) that he won. I really, really dislike Adam and his screaming.

  • Jim

    Completely agree. Kris, a great singer, was destined if only because he reaped the Danny Gokey voting block. Both are great in their own way, and I can’t wait to see Adam GLambert’s Vegas show in a few years. (really, I’d pay to see it. Even if its not in Vegas. Adam’s a much better performer.)
    And finally, yeah, SYTYCD is a more compelling show even though I’m more a music fan than a dance fan.

  • Kathryn

    What was extremely upsetting to me was all of the internet chatter and tweeting about how God had brought forth Kris’ victory as a message to gay people.

  • Michelle

    God has better things to do than watch American Idol.

  • blueberry

    There’s no way So You Think You Can Dance is better than American Idol. The contestants are more visible after the end of the show with their music and such, while I don’t know where Joshua of last season is now.

    Plus, what does everyone think of SYTYCD having their brand diluted by having a Fall season right after this season.

  • Sheindie

    Adam reminds people of Elvis in his prime – charismatic, talented, good looking and exciting while Kris has that laid back pulls you in relaxing type of talent like Jack Johnson and .. he plays guitar, piano and his arrangements are cool… I’m glad they were the final two … both will be stars for a very long time :)