Parental Writes #36 – “Idol” Worship


OK, I admit it. I watch “American Idol”. I have since Day 1, 13 seasons ago. I don’t know what it is about it, but it’s my guilty pleasure show. Maybe it’s the journey they all take – watching their initial audition and see them get better and better as they go along, trying to figure out which one will actually win.

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Yes, I can name all the past winners – Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barino, Carrie Underwood (I was rooting for Bo Bice), Taylor Hicks (Katherine McPhee should have won), Jordin Sparks, David Cook, Kris Allen (Adam Lambert should have won), Lee DeWyze, Scotty McCreery, Phillip Phillips, Candice Glover, and Caleb Johnson – is that sad?

There was a time, during the string of “White guys with guitars” winners (Cook through Phillips) that I almost gave it up, but couldn’t do it. Sigh.

I will say, they have made enough changes over the years to keep me watching, most notably the changes in judges. The current set of Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez, and Harry Connick, Jr. are my favorites.

All three of them give really good and, more importantly, useful criticism. Plus, they all seem to like each other. The original trio of Simon, Paula, and Randy got annoying after a couple seasons, even with Paula Abdul’s trippy comments and Simon Cowell’s often severe critiques (even though more often than not he was spot on).

Another fun part – at least in our house – is my wife is a music teacher so she gives good feedback while we’re watching. And being a performer myself, I can tell when someone is messing up or super nervous or just a complete hack.

Duncan has joined in the “fun” now as well. He remembers names of contestants WAY better than we do, so he can remind us of what someone sang on a previous episode. It’s a family affair. 🙂

For me, far and away the best moment of the run of the show was when we found this out:

Not missed in the least!!

Now if you’ll excuse me, this week’s episodes are the Minneapolis auditions! Gotta see if we know anyone!!

–Originally posted on Copyright 2015 Paul Reyburn

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Paul Reyburn Paul has been an actor/director in the Twin Cities area for over 30 years and is very active in the MN theater community. His kid is really cool! He also writes the "Parental Writes" blog at
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