Archive: "American Idol"

Seabiscuit, Seabiscuit, Seabiscuit

It has come to our attention that there are those who are calling for a change to our long and deeply held belief that the essence of "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest is most perfectly summed up with the sobriquet "Seabiscuit." We will not dignify these parties by naming...

By Lisa de Moraes | August 8, 2009; 10:25 AM ET | Comments (5)

Kris Allen Dings Reports of AT&T Staffers' Voting Help

"American Idol" winner Kris Allen went on Jimmy Fallon's NBC late night show Wednesday. While there, he tried to hose down news reports that employees of one of the singing competition's corporate sponsors helped Allen fans increase the number of votes they could cast last week to determine the...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 28, 2009; 02:30 PM ET | Comments (9)

American Idol Gets Crowned

The "American Idol" finale opens with the two remaining Idolettes, Kris Allen and Adam Lambert coming out on stage after having finished painting the dressing rooms. Or, maybe they're dental-hygenist Idols. Anyway, they look creepy in their all-white twinsie outfits. 'Idol' host Ryan Seacrest with winner Kris Allen. (AP/Fox) Show...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 21, 2009; 05:33 AM ET | Comments (58)

"American Idol" Final Performance Night

"American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest wastes no time pumping up Tuesday's final performance show like it's some titanic struggle between two gladiators: "Tonight is the battle of the acoustic rocker...the guy next door versus the guy-liner!" Seacrest gushes -- and offers a whole lot more where that came from....

By Lisa de Moraes | May 20, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (48)

Goodbye to Danny on "American Idol"

Note to Readers: Lisa will return to her regular posting schedule next week. In the meantime, please enjoy these snarks and musings on last night's spectacle by guest Idol expert Tamara Jones in today's TV Column....

By Libby Copeland | May 14, 2009; 08:22 AM ET | Comments (26)

"American Idol": The Three Amigos

We're down to three guy singers on "American Idol" -- The Three Amigos, show host Ryan Seacrest calls them. This is the week each of the judges gets to choose a tune for one of the Idolettes to perform. But this year there are four judges -- The Four...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 13, 2009; 08:41 AM ET | Comments (39)

"American Idol" Top 3 Unveiled

Rocker Week Results Night on "American Idol" opens Wednesday with show host Ryan Seacrest announcing viewers cast 65 million votes the previous night -- the most ever in the show's eight seasons, except during finale weeks. The four remaining Idolettes sing Alice Cooper's "School's Out," which is really hard...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 7, 2009; 07:52 AM ET | Comments (30)

"American Idol" Rocks On

The "American Idol" set is cursed on Rocker Week, show host Ryan Seacrest says at the top of Tuesday's show. 'Idol's' Adam Lambert. (Ray Mickshaw -- Fox) First they had an accident on the stage. According to TMZ, the Staircase to Paradise -- it retracts after Seacrest descends it...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 6, 2009; 08:24 AM ET | Comments (53)

Matt the Hat Gets Whacked -- Again -- on "American Idol"

Fox celebrates its decision not to air President Obama's news conference by starting "American Idol" one minute early -- at 8:59 p.m. -- which will inflate early ratings on "Lie To Me," Fox's Obamavision alternative, making the network's decision seem that much smarter. Nicely done, Fox! 'Idol's' Matt Giraud...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 30, 2009; 08:34 AM ET | Comments (46)

"American Idol" Sort of Salutes the Rat Pack

It's Rat Pack Week on "American Idol," amended to Rat-Pack-Themed night at some point, but even so we assume the surviving Idolettes will be expected to convey guys cutting up and behaving like they own the joint while singing boozy but classy versions of sophisticated tunes from that day....

By Lisa de Moraes | April 29, 2009; 08:30 AM ET | Comments (45)

Craig Ferguson vs. Simon Cowell

This week, Lisa wants to know if you think Craig Ferguson got the better of his interview with Simon Cowell, giving him the worst beating a Scot has given a Brit since William Wallace painted his face blue; or if you think Simon made Craig look like he was...

By Andrea Browne | April 24, 2009; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (2)

Disco Takes its Toll On "American Idol"

Ever since Tuesday's Disco Performance Night on "American Idol," host Ryan Seacrest has been bragging about how the show actually came in at some semblance of "on time." "Whoopie!" Seacrest tweeted of the Tuesday show's on-time-ness, revealing the producers had accomplished this remarkable feat -- in marked contrast to...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 23, 2009; 08:31 AM ET | Comments (25)

Disco Night on "American Idol"

This crazy cockeyed world in which we live does not give us much to believe in, but one thing we should be able to count on: When "American Idol" tells us it's disco week, by gum we expect them to deliver disco -- and disco like god intended: loud,...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 22, 2009; 08:28 AM ET | Comments (43)

Judges Save Makes its Debut on "American Idol"

Wednesday's "American Idol" results night kicks off with a compendium of "Grindhousean" cliches -- scratchy picture, movie-projector going on the blink, etc. -- in case we forgot Quentin Tarantino, that legendary renegade of cinema, had offered each of the Idolettes cinematic advice on their previous night's performances. Tips like...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 16, 2009; 08:20 AM ET | Comments (56)

Quentin Tarantino Coaches "American Idol"

Movie-tune night on "American Idol," in which the Idolettes will sing flick songs under the watchful eye of a "legend," show host Ryan Seacrest says. 'Idol' contestant Adam Lambert (Frank Micelotta -- Fox) Of course, when you think movie legend, you think Quentin Tarantino, right? Tarantino has lost some...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 15, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (60)

"American Idol": Scott Free

"American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest no longer opens the Wednesday results show with his ominous gag about how he's going to reveal the viewer voting results that will seal the fate of one of the Idolettes. These days he says he will reveal the results of viewer votes that will...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 9, 2009; 06:23 AM ET | Comments (57)

Birth Year Tunes on "American Idol"

Songs From The Year of Their Birth night on "American Idol," in which we learn this year's Idolettes were born in some pretty bleak years for song-writing -- and learn fascinating things about their childhoods. 'Idol' contestant Danny Gokey. (Fox) But first -- baby pictures of the "American Idol" judges....

By Lisa de Moraes | April 8, 2009; 06:30 AM ET | Comments (60)

On Idol, Megan Flaps Her Wings and Flies Home

So Megan's out, and judge Simon Cowell tells her that in much the same way she did not care about his critique of her performance, the judges don't care how well she re-sings this week's tune of choice -- they have no intention of using their "save" card to keep her in the derby. But Megan takes the high road. She thanks the judges and says "Baby, I'm coming home," to her two-year-old son at home. Finally she'll have time to sift through all those online marriage proposals.

By Lisa de Moraes | April 2, 2009; 06:57 AM ET | Comments (42)

"American Idol" Digs Deep and Comes Up...Eh

Just when you thought it couldn't be done, "American Idol" producers find a way to squeeze one more drop of product placement out of their show when host Ryan Seacrest announces the theme for this week's performance episode: "Popular Downloads on iTunes." 'Idol' contestant Anoop Desai. (Fox) By "popular" they...

By Libby Copeland | April 1, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (52)

"Idol," Put Us Out Of Our Misery!

Guest blogger Tamara Jones fills in this week for Washington Post television columnist Lisa de Moraes. We have just two words for former American Idol winner Ruben Studdard: Head deodorant. Seriously, hasn't anyone invented Ban for baldies yet? Because as Studdard so vividly demonstrates upon his return to the...

By Libby Copeland | March 27, 2009; 08:09 AM ET | Comments (32)

A Little Slow, A Lot of Weird in Idol's Motown

Guest blogger Tamara Jones fills in this week for Washington Post television columnist Lisa de Moraes. Note to Readers: Lisa will return to her regular posting schedule next week. Motown, not slowtown. In case you were wondering just how boring American Idol could possibly get this season, here's a clue:...

By Libby Copeland | March 26, 2009; 08:21 AM ET | Comments (51)

A Funereal Elimination Night on Idol

Guest blogger Tamara Jones fills in this week for Washington Post television columnist Lisa de Moraes. They're promising us "an epic night" on American Idol, but we've taken enough running kicks at that invisible football to know better by now, thank you very much. We won't get fooled again....

By Libby Copeland | March 19, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (45)

Idol's Twangy Grand Ole Opry Week

Guest blogger Tamara Jones fills in this week for Washington Post television columnist Lisa de Moraes. Please, Jesus, take the wheel. And the remote, too. Just when we thought the PTSD flashbacks were finally subsiding from Dolly Parton's acoustic acrylic fingernail performance of "9-to-5" last year, it's Grand Ole Opry...

By Libby Copeland | March 18, 2009; 08:00 AM ET | Comments (58)

Can The Judges Save "American Idol?"

"American Idol" introduces -- The Judges's Save! "Tamyra Grey, Michael Johns, Jennifer Hudson, Chris Daughtry -- what do these people have in common?" show host Ryan Seacrest asks at the top of the show. Contestant Jasmine Murray gets eliminated. (Ray Mickshaw -- Fox) And no, "They mercifully got cut...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 12, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (53)

13 Unlucky for "American Idol"

Back when Fox executives were high-fiving each other for deciding to turn "American Idol's" traditional top-12 finalists into the top-13 finalists, to really shake things up on the singing competition this year, no one thought to send a memo to the Senior Executive Vice President for Reality Series Viewer Voting...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 11, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (38)

Pretend Judging on 'American Idol'

Thursday is Wild Card night on "American Idol." Tonight the judges will listen to performances by eight ousted Idolettes who have been brought back to compete for three Wild Card spots in the final round of competition. Tonight we will pretend we don't already know that two of the three...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 6, 2009; 05:15 AM ET | Comments (40)

Back Stories Triumph on "American Idol"

After a very disturbing performance night, in which "American Idol" judge Paula Abdul started to make perfect sense, we're relieved to see her arrive at Wednesday's results show looking like she's come to the set straight from from a Real Housewives of Sherman Oaks Canasta Party, wearing some deep...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 5, 2009; 08:27 AM ET | Comments (29)

Judges Patronize on "American Idol"

Tuesday is leftovers night on "American Idol." It's the final batch of 12 performing, and most of them we've already forgotten from Hollywood Week, it's been so long since we saw them last. Three from this batch will become members of the Final 12. Von Smith, aka Hollywood Shouter...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 4, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (39)

Nick/Normund Licked on "American Idol"

Simon finds religion. Kara uses up all her minutes. My favorite ad airs again. Is this the best-ever "American Idol" results show or what? "The foundation of this show has always been The Power of The Vote," show host Ryan Seacrest intones at the top of Thursday's "Idol" results show,...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 27, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (23)

Multiple Choice Mistakes Mar 'American Idol'

Week No. 2 of How Did These People Make It To the Top 36 round on "American Idol." (Performance night has been bumped from its regular Tuesday berth, to Wednesday, by President Barack Obama's Not Quite State of the Union Address.) Contestant Nick "Normund Gentle" Mitchell performs. (Michael Becker --...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 26, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (31)

Tatiana's Dreams Dashed on "American Idol"

It's Wednesday, the first voting results night of this season's "American Idol," only three of last night's performers will survive, and host Ryan Seacrest warns us to "take nothing for granted." Ryan Seacrest congratulates contestant Danny Gokey, who advances, while Tatiana Del Toro (left) gets sent home. (Frank Micelotta...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 19, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (33)

Tatiana No Laughing Matter on "American Idol"

After weeks slogging through auditions and Hollywood, it's finally time to hear some actual singing and do some actual voting Tuesday night. "American Idol" contestant Tatiana Nicole Del Toro. (Frank Micelotta -- Fox) Show host Ryan Seacrest kicks things off with the traditional "What do they have to do...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 18, 2009; 07:39 AM ET | Comments (29)

Idolette Pacitti Vanishes In Middle of the Night

At 1:13 a.m. ET Wednesday night -- right around the time West Coast viewers were seeing "American Idol" judges tell Joanna Pacitti, former professional singer, that she was going to get yet another chance and give her one of the precious 36 semifinalists slots on the show -- Fox...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 12, 2009; 12:52 PM ET | Comments (10)

Let Them Eat Cake Night on "American Idol"

Because these are hard times for so many "American Idol" viewers, the producers turned Final Judgment Wednesday - aka Chair Night - into Let Them Eat Cake Night. This year, for the first time, the Idolettes did sit on some dumpy chair in some ugly conference room while the "Idol"...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 12, 2009; 02:01 AM ET | Comments (18)

Wear a Costume to Work Day on "American Idol"

It's the start of a very dramatic second week of Hollywood Week on "American Idol." I know that makes no sense, but we're operating on "Idol" time, where one week can be drawn out over two, for ratings purposes. Work with me here, people. On Tuesday night, we are introduced...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 11, 2009; 12:18 AM ET | Comments (23)

Bikini Girl, We Barely Knew You

It's Group Round Night in Hollywood -- in which the Idolettes are told at bedtime to form into cliques, rehearse until the wee hours of the morning a tune that was popular when their parents were their age, and then perform it that afternoon in the most famous theater...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 5, 2009; 08:34 AM ET | Comments (16)

Idolettes Sing for Their Lives in Famous Shopping Mall Theater

This year the "American Idol" Hollywood round will take place in "the legendary Kodak Theatre," show host Ryan Seacrest says. It's "one of the world's most famous stages," he adds, driving the point home. It is, in fact the most famous theater ever built in a shopping mall. "Idol"...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 4, 2009; 06:41 AM ET | Comments (10)

Jets vs Sharks

You were thinking "American Idol" producers mashed up this season's auditions in New York and San Juan, Puerto Rico because one -- or both -- stank. But, you're so wrong, pookie. The two rounds of tryouts were combined into one hour -- and a very special third night of...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 30, 2009; 08:24 AM ET | Comments (6)

American Idol: Hard Luck Story

MS-suffering Osmonds. Tatted single moms. Orphaned flower children. Is this a sweeps week of "Tyra"? Sadly, it's just another auditions episode of "American Idol: Hard Luck Story." Tonight: Salt Lake City. Show host Ryan Seacrest warns us at the top of the show that they encountered some of the...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 29, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (35)

Paula vs Kara in Randy-land

New "American Idol" judge Kara DioGuardi finally earns her salary, ratcheting up the Paula crazy during auditions in Jacksonville. It's about time! Oh, and note to Fox: If you have, as you suggested at the press tour, gone all green and ecologically responsible, maybe it's best not to open...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 28, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (12)

"American Idol's" Mocking Birds

"American Idol" judges Randy Jackson, Simon Cowell, and particularly Paula Abdul and new Karen DioGuardi look very Lovey Howell in Louisville, Kentucky -- serious how-did-we-get-here overtones to this episode. On the bright side, host Ryan Seacrest gets to make racetrack jokes about the 11,000 wanna be Idolettes auditioning at...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 22, 2009; 08:08 AM ET | Comments (9)

Idol: The Inaugural Edition

In his inaugural speech, new president Barack Obama promised us a time of trial. He just didn't tell us it would come so quickly. Inauguration Day "American Idol" takes us to San Francisco, of which new judge Kara DioGuardi makes such cogent observations as "I love San Francisco," and...

By Libby Copeland | January 21, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (8)

There's No Place Like Kansas City

The "American Idol" Aspirational Auditions Tour moves to Kansas City. Eleven thousand wannabe Idolettes turn out to audition, including -- just when you thought it was safe -- seventh season finalist Jason Castro, who is accompanying his younger brother, Michael, who's decided to audition this time around. Courtesy of...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 15, 2009; 06:07 AM ET | Comments (10)

"Idol" Takes Tumble Despite Addition of Aspirational Bikinis

More than 30 million viewers caught the season premiere of the new "American Idol" on Fox Tuesday, according to early statistics -- making it still the most watched TV series debut this season by many laps. The kickoff of the singing competition's many promised changes -- including the introduction...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 14, 2009; 02:05 PM ET | Comments (1)

"Idol" Overhaul

What has Fox done to our "American Idol"? They warned us this season would be more aspirational, less cutthroat, in keeping with the times, but kicking off in Phoenix with Louie Armstrong singing "What a Wonderful World" over shots of judge Simon Cowell actually smiling, the traditional Weeping Winners...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 14, 2009; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (33)

'American Idol': Sayonara, Syesha

While Lisa de Moraes is watching the television networks unveil their new season schedules in New York, Designated "American Idol" Pinch-Blogger Teresa Wiltz gives a play-by-play of this week's results show. Another season of "American Idol" rapidly approaches its denouement. Scratch the rapidly. Watching the penultimate results show is the...

By Teresa Wiltz | May 15, 2008; 06:11 AM ET | Comments (0)

"American Idol": Perfectly Dread-ful

Never in this season of "American Idol" has it been so clear who should get the old heave-ho on results-and-product-plug night. The previous night, Jason Castro mutilated Bob Marley's "I Shot the Sheriff" and forgot lyrics on Bob Dylan's "Mr. Tambourine Man" -- two songs he said he chose to...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 8, 2008; 07:43 AM ET | Comments (64)

"American Idol": The Unfab Four

Rock-and-roll night on "American Idol" should be a slam-dunk for this year's token rocker, David Cook, right? He starts off Round 1 of this week's competition with Duran Duran's "Hungry Like a Wolf" because, he notes, it came out the year he was born. Contestant David Archuleta performs at the...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 7, 2008; 07:47 AM ET | Comments (88)

"American Idol": "I Am," Nanny Brooke Said. "Nuh-uh," We Replied.

After frightening us with word that we know more about this year's five remaining Idolettes than about any other contestants in "American Idol" history, show host Ryan Seacrest says he's "still out of breath" from previous night's Paula Abdul Goes Psychic Show. "I don't know if it's the strangest...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 1, 2008; 07:20 AM ET | Comments (0)

"American Idol": Holly Holy! It's Neil Diamond Night!

"American Idol" comes unhinged on Neil Diamond Night. For starters, each of the remaining five Idolettes gets to sing not one but two Diamond tunes. Then, to save time, the show's judges -- Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell, won't get to critique the Idolettes until each has performed...

By Rose Jacobius | April 30, 2008; 06:37 AM ET | Comments (0)

"American Idol": Survival of the Weakest

Andrew Lloyd Webber Week Results Night on "American Idol" is a shocker from start to finish. Show host Ryan Seacrest kicks things off by kissing judge Simon Cowell, after which he assures Simon, "Relax -- it didn't mean anything." Even though it was only a kiss on the head, Simon...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 24, 2008; 07:02 AM ET | Comments (0)

'American Idol': Phantom of the Idol

Because "American Idol" hasn't yet lost enough of its 18- to 34-year-old viewers, Andrew Lloyd Webber is this week's guest judge and the Idolettes are being forced to sing his show tunes. And yes, that means we, the viewers, must sit through two songs from "The Phantom of the Opera"...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 23, 2008; 06:09 AM ET | Comments (0)

"American Idol": Countdown to Six

In a suspicious show of collegiality and generosity, our real TV columnist once again has given the keys to "American Idol" blogdom this week to Tamara Jones, auxiliary backup Designated Idol Watcher. Sell the horse, suffer the consequences: Kristy Lee Cook is headed back to the Ponderosa, leaving six wannabe...

By Rose Jacobius | April 17, 2008; 06:43 AM ET | Comments (0)

"American Idol": The Guys Have It

In a suspicious show of collegiality and generosity, our real TV columnist once again has given the keys to "American Idol" blogdom this week to Tamara Jones, auxiliary backup Designated Idol Watcher. Yep, Simon and Randy were right all along: These girls are no Mariah Carey. The boys are. With...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 16, 2008; 08:15 AM ET | Comments (0)

"American Idol" Keeps On Giving, Whacks Aussie

After a day's delay so "American Idol" could bring you the Miley Cyrus Queen of All Media Telethon, one of the Idolettes is gonna go. First, show host Ryan Seacrest, who's hair keeps getting pointier, takes us on a walk down memory lane in re the night before. Ben Stiller...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 11, 2008; 09:21 AM ET | Comments (44)

"American Idol": Give Till It Hurts Your Agent

Last year's "Idol Gives Back" fundraiser was so successful the number of celebu-saints wanting to jump on the Do-Gooder Wagon skyrockets to nearly 70, forcing Fox to start the show 30 minutes before prime time, just to fit them all into what turns out to be a 152-minute celebu-thon. They...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 10, 2008; 06:56 AM ET | Comments (27)

'American Idol': 8 Stabs at Inspiration

This week, the Idolettes are charged with singing inspirational songs to warm up the crowd to drop some serious coin less than 24 hours later on "Idol Gives Back," which, judging by the number of celebs who've signed on, promises to be the greatest orgy of excess in the history...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 9, 2008; 06:12 AM ET | Comments (70)

'American Idol': Eight Idolettes Standing

In a suspicious show of collegiality and generosity, our real TV columnist has given the keys to "American Idol" blogdom this week to Tamara Jones, auxiliary backup Designated Idol Watcher. We are certain the very real danger of possibly hearing nine Idolette renditions of "Islands in the Stream" on Dolly...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 3, 2008; 06:06 AM ET | Comments (33)

'American Idol': Dolly Parton Days

In a suspicious show of collegiality and generosity, our real TV columnist has given the keys to "American Idol" blogdom this week to Tamara Jones, auxiliary backup Designated Idol Watcher. We are certain the very real danger of possibly hearing nine Idolette renditions of "Islands in the Stream" on Dolly...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 2, 2008; 06:16 AM ET | Comments (55)

'American Idol': Down to 9

More than 30 million viewer votes were cast this week for the Top 10 Idolettes -- the biggest haul so far this "American Idol" season. As befits the occasion, judges Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell have changed costumes since the previous night. She's no longer a Parisian apache dancer, she's...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 27, 2008; 06:10 AM ET | Comments (39)

'American Idol': The Wave of the Past

A Very Special Night on "American Idol." The traditional Pimping of "'Til Death" is back, only this time Brad Garrett and Joely Fisher & Her Incredible Shoes all have turned out to pitch in. Judge Paula Abdul is wearing what's left of a sparkly silver outfit, the left shoulder of...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 26, 2008; 06:03 AM ET | Comments (56)

'American Idol': Nurse Overmyer Sent Packing

Who's in, who's out, who will get to be part of the "American Idol" tour? Who's in this week's Bottom 3 -- other than Kristy Lee Cook? Someone's number is up, show host Ryan Seacrest reveals at the top of this week's results show. If this is news to you,...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 20, 2008; 07:11 AM ET | Comments (48)

'American Idol': 11 More Beatles Songs Mangled

"American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest, the new King of All Media, gushes that this is the very first time in history the show has done the same theme two weeks in a row. Because the Beatles are Just. That. Good. Judge Paula Abdul tells Seacrest that during last week's Beatles...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 19, 2008; 07:00 AM ET | Comments (69)

'American Idol': First Finalist to Go

The first "Results Show Product Pimp-athon" of a new "American Idol" edition is always one of the TV season's most eagerly awaited events. Can the producers possibly top last season, fans wonder. Is it possible to jam any more product placement into a one-hour program? Ryan Seacrest waits with the...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 13, 2008; 07:11 AM ET | Comments (42)

'American Idol': Best 12 Ever

We're down to the top 12, folks, on The Very Best "American Idol" Ever. For the occasion, they've built a spectacular "Star Trek"-cum-Vegas set. The audience gives the set a standing ovation. Yes, they really do. Syesha Mercado (Ray Mickshaw - Fox) The new set includes, host Ryan Seacrest says...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 12, 2008; 07:12 AM ET | Comments (0)

'American Idol': Your 12 Finalists

The final 12 will be revealed on "American Idol" tonight, host Ryan Seacrest says. Four people are going home. According to our Completely Unscientific "American Idol" Poll, this week it's Luke Menard on the guys' side and Kady Malloy for the chicks by a landslide. Danny Noriega seems a sure...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 7, 2008; 07:14 AM ET | Comments (0)

'American Idol': Eight Chicks on Embarrassment

On "American Idol" it's the chicks' turn to tackle songs from the '80s -- a decade judge Paula Abdul is reminded was big for her. The age reference would make most women working in TV very insecure, but Paula's still sucking on whatever crazy juice she got into the previous...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 6, 2008; 07:03 AM ET | Comments (47)

"American Idol": Eight Guys' Most Embarrassing Moments

It's the last chance for the eight Idolette guys to try to secure a spot in the "American Idol" Season 7 finals. Show host Ryan Seacrest walks down the curving staircase from the Balcony of Broken Dreams like a Ziegfeld girl, patting the occasional Guy Idolette lining the stairway. It's...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 5, 2008; 06:32 AM ET | Comments (62)

'American Idol': And Then There Were 16

Four more Idolettes have to go. Host Ryan Seacrest asks judge Randy Jackson what the purpose is of the "theme" weeks -- this week being '70s week, one week after '60s week. Randy explains it's because every one of the contestants knows every song that's on the radio these days,...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 29, 2008; 07:55 AM ET | Comments (0)

'American Idol' Chicks: Goin' for the Sweeney

With David Archuleta pretty much stealing the show on guys night -- he was recognized with the competition's very first Crazy Paula Wants to Squeeze Your Head Off and Hang Your Body From Her Rearview Mirror Award, a.k.a. The Sweeney -- it's up to the 10 remaining girls to see...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 28, 2008; 07:07 AM ET | Comments (66)

'American Idol' Guys: 10 Things We Didn't Know About You

The 10 guys still standing last night on "American Idol" sing '70s songs while each reveals the One Thing America Might Not Know About Me. What America Might Not Know About Michael Johns is he's "a bit of a jock" and a lot of his best songs come from playing...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 27, 2008; 07:13 AM ET | Comments (108)

'American Idol': First Four to Go

It's "American Idol's" very first Elimination Costume Party. In honor of it being '60s-music week, the 12 Idolette chicks are all going as the "My Fair Lady" racetrack scene on drugs. The best costume trophy goes to Alaina Whitaker -- or maybe it's Kady Malloy, it's so hard to tell...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 22, 2008; 07:50 AM ET | Comments (64)

'American Idol': Where the Girls Are

Wednesday evening is all about girl power, "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest says. The 12 girls quickly divide into two camps: the good performers and the non-good performers, who, it seems, are victims of mean old nerves and mean old colds, possibly the worst flu in the history of the...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 21, 2008; 07:25 AM ET | Comments (83)

'American Idol': Top-12 Guys Do the '60s

"American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest opens Guys Night by reminding us "people are saying this year's talent is the best yet." By "people" he means "Idol" producers. This is our first opportunity to see what they mean. Naturally, the 12 guys are forced to sing tunes from the 1960s --...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 20, 2008; 07:19 AM ET | Comments (98)

'American Idol': The Riddle of the Sphinx

It's Hollywood week, so naturally "American Idol" opens in pretend-Egypt with host Ryan Seacrest sitting atop a sphinx with Hayden Christensen, star of the Fox flick "Jumper," about how the hotness gene is somehow connected to the ability to travel without having to suffer through airport security. Through the miracle...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 14, 2008; 07:24 AM ET | Comments (16)

'American Idol': Rehabbing Hollywood

A roller-coaster week for "American Idol": First, it's going to become a Disney theme park attraction in which tourists who buy tickets can sing for a panel of judges. We like the certain touch of irony that will add to the show going forward each time judge Simon Cowell sniffs...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 13, 2008; 07:24 AM ET | Comments (13)

'American Idol': Sensitivity Training

To the uninitiated, the Best of the Rest auditions episode of "American Idol" may look like leftover bits and scraps collected from earlier episodes in which the competition's judges visited audition cities around the country. And Wednesday night's so-long-it-lasted-into-next-week bit, in which "Idol" judge Simon Cowell learns how to hold...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 7, 2008; 07:20 AM ET | Comments (21)

'American Idol' Auditions: Acts of Charity

The homeless and the orphaned -- and the current reigning Miss South Florida Fair -- are called forth last night to be healed on "American Idol" in Atlanta. But first, show host Ryan Seacrest's parents show up spontaneously, because going to a convention center dressed in a suit and tie...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 6, 2008; 07:52 AM ET | Comments (12)

'American Idol': Miami Sound Machine

Okay, we're adjusting to the idea of a lineup of "American Idol" competitors who've had professional singing experience. But an ex-boyfriend of Britney Spears? Once upon a time, if you covered "Idol" you did a lot of Googling to find out if contestants had police records or porn pasts. These...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 31, 2008; 08:08 AM ET | Comments (0)

'Idol' in Omaha: Corntastic

"American Idol" holds auditions in the country's heartland for the first time, and discovers Omaha is "famous for its corn," which is so important they decide to lead the show with this breaking news. "They grow a lot of corn here," we see Randy Jackson telling fellow "Idol" judge Simon...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 30, 2008; 07:26 AM ET | Comments (14)

'American Idol': Hail, the Virgin Queen

Just when you thought there was nothing new under the sun at "American Idol," along comes the Virgin Dance Captain of Knoxville Catholic High. The Virgin Dance Captain, or, as she likes to call herself, "Amy Catherine, AC, whatev" Flynn, is the 16-year-old captain of the "dance team." Which appears...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 24, 2008; 07:57 AM ET | Comments (17)

'American Idol': Been There, Seen Them

This year, we've been promised we'll get better acquainted with more good auditioners during the early episodes of "American Idol," when judges Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell crisscross the country to discover their next group of Idolettes. That's so we'll feel more invested in them by the time...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 23, 2008; 07:21 AM ET | Comments (8)

'Idol' Does Dallas

We Watch So You Don't Have To If, as Simon Cowell recently insisted in a phone call with TV critics, this season has produced the best crop of "American Idol" wannabes yet, why did he and fellow judges Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul feel compelled to send through to Hollywood...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 17, 2008; 07:48 AM ET | Comments (13)

'American Idol' Treacles In

First night of the traditional lousy-auditions phase of "Idol" -- three glorious weeks on the road meeting delusional pop-star wannabes -- takes us to Philadelphia. But why are the judges being so well-behaved? Aspiring veterinarian Alexis Cohen comes in with her face covered in glitter and channels Grace Slick, after...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 16, 2008; 07:08 AM ET | Comments (0)

She Was Just 17.....

How do you keep viewers interested in the final night of an "American Idol" season when there is virtually no suspense as to who is going to win? Here's how: 1) Bring out the two final Idolettes -- Blake Lewis and Jordin Sparks -- to sing the Beatles' "I Saw...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 24, 2007; 01:22 AM ET | Comments (30)

My 'American Idol' Coronation Tune

Tonight, on the final performance night of "Idol," the producers perpetrated upon us the latest treacly "American Idol" Coronation Tune. This year, the producers decided to open up the song selection to competition. And the best, the very best, of the bunch, was "This is My Now." Which, so far...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 23, 2007; 01:47 AM ET | Comments (19)

Goodbye, Melinda

John Maynard is filling in for Lisa de Moraes who is in New York covering the annual network upfront presentations. She's back blogging about "Idol" next week. Melinda's gone. Blake is safe! To quote Homer Simpson: "D'oh!" So, how appropriate that the yellow, balding, fat cartoon character would open the...

By Maura McCarthy | May 17, 2007; 09:34 AM ET | Comments (26)

Nine Songs -- One Hour

John Maynard is guest blogging in place of Lisa de Moraes who is in New York this week at the annual network upfront presentations where executives are promising her fabulous TV entertainment for next fall. Don't worry folks -- Lisa will be back next week for the final round. Welcome...

By John Maynard | May 16, 2007; 11:10 AM ET | Comments (11)

LaKisha Out

"The Dreamgirls" semi-finals won't happen next week on "American Idol." LaKisha Jones got the hook after receiving fewer of the 45 million votes cast this week than had Melinda Doolittle, Jordin Sparks, or Beatbox Boy Blake Lewis, who we increasingly suspect is a hologram. The Results show is strangely distressing...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 10, 2007; 08:09 AM ET | Comments (31)

All Hail 'Imperial Idol'

"American Idol" producers finally threw off the pretense they're doing a nice little singing competition and revealed the show for what it has become: "Imperial Idol" -- a bloated, overproduced, marketing barge on which the show's judges, host and contestants are being forced to row faster and faster. There's no...

By Lisa de Moraes | May 9, 2007; 06:00 AM ET | Comments (28)

It's Not About Winning

Idol Gives Back" fallout week on "American Idol." Last week, because none of the Idolettes got whacked in the name of charity, this week the herd will have to be culled. Two Idolettes are going. Phil Stacey is the first. Jordin Sparks, on the other hand, is enjoying very special...

By Maura McCarthy | May 3, 2007; 08:10 AM ET | Comments (40)

'Idol' Rocks Out

Does the fact that "American Idol" has raised at least $70 million for needy children make it less or more cringe-inducing that show host Ryan Seacrest introduces judges Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell as the show's "three needy children." Does the fact that some of the recipients of...

By Maura McCarthy | May 2, 2007; 08:09 AM ET | Comments (35)

'Idol' Gives Back, We Give Up

The much ballyhooed two-hour "American Idol" charity fundraiser results show is finally here. The phone lines are open -- Let's get started. Show host Ryan Seacrest demonstrates live TV for the kiddies by messing up his very first line of the night, telling the producer he wants a do-over and...

By Maura McCarthy | April 26, 2007; 07:43 AM ET | Comments (0)

Give Back My 'Idol'

Lose Sanjaya Malakar, ditch the cynicism, medicate Simon Cowell, and what have you got left? "Idol Gives Back" -- that's what. "Idol" veered wildly off brand with the first night of its two-night "American Idol" event to raise cash to feed and heal hungry and sick children in Africa and...

By Maura McCarthy | April 25, 2007; 07:46 AM ET | Comments (0)

So Long, Sanjaya

This is John Maynard completing the last day of his two-day stint as guest "American Idol" blogger in place of the vacationing Lisa de Moraes. She's back to the blog next Wednesday. The Sanjaya media tour begins today. No TV show will be safe from the Sanjaya PR machine in...

By Maura McCarthy | April 19, 2007; 08:54 AM ET | Comments (32)

Haley Scarnato!

Great! Just when it looked like Haley Scarnato! might actually heed this week's Simon Cowell advice to wear even less clothing next Tuesday, you go and boot her off the show by giving her the smallest number of votes. Nice work, viewers! This week, freed from the shackles of an...

By Lisa de Moraes | April 12, 2007; 08:01 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Emasculation of Simon

"American Idol" judge Simon Cowell appears to have been neutered since we saw him last. Simon apparently believes the number of votes being cast for Idolette Sanjaya Malakar each week by little girls and older women is directly proportional to how mean Simon is in his review of Sanjaya's performance....

By Lisa de Moraes | April 4, 2007; 08:32 AM ET | Comments (48)

Sanjacko!

"American Idol" is finally making way for Sanjaya Malakar. Once the show's biggest cringe, this week the show suddenly began treating him like a ratings driver. Wednesday's results show opens with two big shout outs to Sanjaya. First, Voice of Ryan Seacrest opens the program, telling viewers that tonight there...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 29, 2007; 07:56 AM ET | Comments (0)

Gwen Stefani Is Very Special

How lucky is l'il ol' "American Idol" to get Gwen Stefani -- a pushing-40 pop star whose latest CD has only so-so sales and whose upcoming tour still has plenty of tickets available -- to be guest mentor to the Idolettes this week. So lucky show host Ryan Seacrest calls...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 28, 2007; 08:51 AM ET | Comments (39)

Sanjaya's Big Night

Thousands of young girls across America are experiencing the sudden onset of puberty, older women are getting over scary Mrs. Robinson flashes, and at least one chick is doomed to starvation -- all because of Sanjaya Malakar deciding to grow into his big hair. It starts off innocently enough on...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 21, 2007; 08:40 AM ET | Comments (52)

Let the Games Begin

*Pre-season's over on "American Idol." We're now down to the final 12, and The Game. This week: The Diana Ross Songbook. BRANDON ROGERS Points to Brandon for being the only "Idol" wannabe to try out a Bust Some Moves strategy. But he discovers mid-way through "Can't Hurry Love" that he...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 14, 2007; 08:13 AM ET | Comments (0)

Stuck in the Middle With You

Who says "American Idol" producers don't have a sense of humor? After all these weeks listening to contestants blather on about how much they love each other and give each other "strength," and weeping crocodile tears when one of their number gets whacked, the producers compel them to open the...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 9, 2007; 02:25 AM ET | Comments (0)

Girls on Top

Scary Things We Can't Get Out of Our Head About Chick Contestants night on "American Idol" Like football is such a big part of Jordin Sparks' life she puts on the face paint. After she belts Pat Benatar's "Heartbreaker," judge Randy Jackson says "it's weird for me" because it's "like...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 8, 2007; 08:23 AM ET | Comments (34)

The Weaker Sex

Eight Things I Wish I Didn't Know About the Guy Contestants night on "American Idol." Show host Ryan Seacrest gives us the bad news right away: Each contestant has to share something about himself. But, so it's not a total loss, he promises us a "very big announcement -- one...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 7, 2007; 07:30 AM ET | Comments (25)

'Feelin' Good' -- Bad Idea

Sing "Feelin' Good" on "American Idol" and you are going to get the hook. Leslie Hunt and AJ Tabaldo both sang "Feelin' Good" this week. Both are gone now. We rest our case. Nick Pedro and Alaina Alexander are gone too. True, they didn't sing "Feelin' Good" but they compensated...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 2, 2007; 03:25 AM ET | Comments (0)

Sobbin' Women

Everyone weeps buckets during chicks' night in "American Idol" Dedication Week. Haley Scarnato tears up when judge Simon Cowell says she's vulnerable after singing "Queen of the Night." Gina Glocksen gets weepy in her I Love My Boyfriend tape -- something about being rejected last year but her boyfriend made...

By Lisa de Moraes | March 1, 2007; 08:07 AM ET | Comments (0)

This is Dedicated to the One I Love

Which is worse, four hours of movie stars thanking their agents and publicists at the Academy Awards or two hours of "American Idol" guy contestants dedicating their performances to mom, dad and grandma? In their defense, the "Idol" guys were told they had to dedicate their songs to someone. Phil...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 28, 2007; 08:32 AM ET | Comments (0)

...And Then There Were 20

Four contestants are going to get the hook on "American Idol" and sadly, not all can be guys. "American Idol" has rules about these things, because if you have, say eight women and just four men compete for the top prize, guys won't watch -- or is it chicks who...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 22, 2007; 11:20 PM ET | Comments (11)

Chicks Rule

Lakisha Jones has won "American Idol" 6. Hooray! Oh wait -- you say there are three more months of this? But seriously, even judge Simon Cowell thought she won. His exact words to the show's other 23 contestants about Lakisha's performance were: "I am very tempted to say to...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 21, 2007; 11:34 PM ET | Comments (26)

Idol Comes out Swinging

If twice as many women as men made it to Hollywood Week on "American Idol" this year, but the producers insist on sending exactly 12 women and 12 guys through to the actual start of viewer-voting competition this week, the guys are going to be the weaker group. So how...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 21, 2007; 12:02 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Miracle of Sundance Head

The Miracle of Sundance Head Day on "American Idol," aka Sure You're Talented But He's the Son of 60's Rock 'n Roll Icon Roy Head So He's In And You're Out Day. Remaining "Idol" wannabe's were transferred from downtown Los Angeles to the Pasadena Civic Auditorium where once again we...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 15, 2007; 08:16 AM ET | Comments (0)

Welcome to Hollywood -- Or As Close As We Could Get to the Hotel Where We Got A Good Group Rate

This year's American Idol Bad Auditions Tour is over -- a resounding success: ratings are up, Rosie is appalled, Paula is lucid. Time for "Idol" wannabes to head to Hollywood. Exactly 172 would-be pop stars have made it to Hollywood, show host Ryan Seacrest tells us. Only, the auditions appear...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 14, 2007; 12:04 AM ET | Comments (0)

Idol Lessons

No one loves "American Idol" lousy auditions episodes more than we do. But we draw the line when the producers decide they're going to teach us stuff while we watch. What's next: University of Phoenix course credit? The final lousy auditions episode -- The Best of the Rest, Fox calls...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 8, 2007; 09:00 AM ET | Comments (7)

Simon Needs to Go Back to British

"American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest tells us 11,000 showed up to audition in San Antonio. Haven't 11,000 showed up in every city? Don't "Idol" producers know even numbers sound like guesses and odd numbers sound like estimates? Bryan Kyrish says he's not afraid of the judges because they "put on...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 7, 2007; 01:19 AM ET | Comments (0)

Cowell Quells Critics

Bet Rosie O'Donnell feels pretty foolish now that Simon Cowell has let that nice, if slightly odd, older guy sing "You Belong to Me" on "American Idol" just because the guy promised his cancer-stricken lady love he'd audition when the judges came to Los Angeles. In a recent "The View"...

By Lisa de Moraes | February 1, 2007; 02:18 AM ET | Comments (0)

Stars Fell on Alabama

"American Idol" judge Paula Abdul comes unraveled in Birmingham -- home of "Idol" winners Taylor Hicks and Ruben Studdard and Carrie Underwood-season runner-up Bo Bice. When Erica Skye bludgeons "Unchained Melody," Paula jumps up from her chair, stands in the corner and proclaims herself "kinda shocked." Paula joins fellow judges...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 31, 2007; 09:09 AM ET | Comments (6)

I'm Okay, You're Okay

Having been slashed to one hour the night before to accommodate the President of the United States, "American Idol" returns with two glorious hours of I'm Okay, You're Okay auditioning in Manhattan. And who better to join Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell as guest judge than Carole Bayer...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 25, 2007; 12:16 AM ET | Comments (18)

Ring Around the Rosie

"American Idol" visits Memphis and rates very low on the cruel-o-meter which is no doubt a big disappointment to Rosie O'Donnell, the country's new Vice Principal, Miss Crankypants. True, when cheerleader Frank Byers gets nixed judge Simon Cowell screams at Byers's fan club -- other cheerleaders and a marching band...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 24, 2007; 01:26 AM ET | Comments (7)

'American Idol' Personality Disorder

Talked with Fox reality guru Mike Darnell this afternoon about "Idol's" opening night numbers (show's best ever, more than 37 million viewers) and he promised Seattle would be the best worst-auditions town ever. He did not disappoint. Auditioners weren't just bad, they were Star Trek convention weird. They all appeared...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 18, 2007; 02:26 AM ET | Comments (25)

'American Idol' : Nice Simon, Mean Randy

"American Idol" bad auditions season kicked off with the most bafflingly clueless yet highly resilient tone-deaf wannabes yet. That included the world's only female Bert Lahr/Cowardly Lion imitator, an "urban Amish" guy who claims not to watch television and yet knew all about "American Idol," and an Apollo Creed/Luciano Pavarotti...

By Lisa de Moraes | January 17, 2007; 02:44 AM ET | Comments (0)

 

© 2009 The Washington Post Company