Will Ellen DeGeneres make it on American Idol?

Before every American Idol fan and entertainment writer goes nuts buzzing online about how it's a bad idea that Ellen DeGeneres has joined the show's judging table, let's all just take a deep breath and give the lady a chance.

What do you say?

It may not be that bad after all, and it's definitely not the end of the world, people.

Yes, DeGeneres is not and has never been a professional singer. Heck she's not the world's greatest dancer either. And yes, she may know next to nothing when it comes to analyzing a good singing voice, but give her some credit, she loves the show and it might be a good match for her.

Only time will tell.

So it's true Emmy Award winning talk show host and well-known comedian DeGeneres has joined the American Idol family as the fourth judge. She will sit alongside Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi and offer a new unique character to the panel.

It's no surprise that Idol fans are still up in arms about Paula Abdul leaving the show last month. Apparently she "stunned the industry," announcing she would not be returning due to contractual differences. It was hoped that the door was slightly left open for her to change her mind, but the chance of that is definitely kaput.

Now, quickly some thoughts about Abdul.

Personally I admire her career, to an extent. I mean I grew up listening to her hit songs and watching her videos as a teenager. At the time I did think they were cool. But, looking back, there was noting amazing about her music. Yes, she is, I mean, was a good dancer, but things done changed since then.

For one, I appreciate good music these days. Second, Abdul's musical performance on Idol last season was a complete mess, seriously! I actually felt bad for her. And about her as a judge, well, it was cool in the beginning that she was the positive voice that saw the good things about every contestant's performance. But, that got old. And eventually Abdul's analysis and strange vocabulary just got way weird and difficult to follow. Her thoughts were very confusing and out of whack most of the time, at least in the last season for sure. Lastly, I feel bad about her fans that will miss Abdul, yet I'm sure they will continue to follow her every move. I honestly wish her the best.

Life goes on.

Now, back to DeGeneres.

"I'm thrilled to be the new judge on American Idol," she said. "I've watched since the beginning, and I've always been a huge fan. So getting this job is a dream come true, and think of the money I'll save not having to text my vote."

DeGeneres made the big announcement on her show today saying she found it hard to keep it a secret before she was told she got the job. She hopes her point of view on the show will resonate with viewers at home.

"Hopefully I'm the people's point of view because I'm just like you. I sit at home and I watch it and I don't have that technical ... I'm not looking at it in a critical way from the producer's mind. I'm looking at it as a person who is going to buy the music and is going to relate to that person. So I'm hopefully going to be that voice of what we're doing at home," she said.

Idol creator and executive producer Simon Fuller said he is excited about DeGeneres joining the Idol family. "Ellen has been a fan of the show for many years, and her love of music and understanding of the American public will bring a unique human touch to our judging panel," he said. "I can't wait for this next season to begin."

Others agree that DeGeneres has an incredible sense of humor and brings an immense warmth and compassion that is almost palpable. It's true she is one of America's funniest people with a vast entertainment experience, and her quick wit will add a fresh new energy to the show, many say.

So before everyone starts judging the new judge, let's give her a chance. Maybe having a sense of humor could be good thing, and there's nothing wrong with a little laugh every now and then.

More importantly it's the viewers at home who really have the final say anyway. Plus, the show is not really about the judges; it's about the amazing musical talent of the finalists who make us cheer each week and have us coming back for more. It's the performers who really steal the show, and it's there ability to reach out and connect with people every week that matters the most. Right?

So let's remember the show is a family one, and the singing, not necessarily the judging is what we look forward too.

Besides DeGeneres is hella funny, and I'm sure she will easily win the hearts of many households this season.

DeGeneres will be on throughout the entire ninth season, which kicks off in January. She will join the judges' panel after the auditions, which feature guest judges Victoria Beckham, Mary J. Blige, Kristin Chenoweth, Joe Jonas, Neil Patrick Harris, Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry and Shania Twain.

plozano@pww.org

 

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