PopEater Readers Weigh In on Paula Abdul's 'American Idol' Absence'American Idol' is missing a certain special something without Paula Abdul's presence, and it's getting clearer week after week, both in our hearts and in the slipping ratings. Some fans miss her wacky comments and zany manner. Some miss her positive vibe and almost maternal style of criticism. Some miss the way Paula championed artists that may have never broken through without her support (Adam Lambert, anyone?). Many griped that her replacement, Ellen DeGeneres, is a fine judge, but just no Paula. Even before Simon Cowell leaves the show, 'A.I.' has distinctly changed with Abdul's absence. We turned to our ever-growing Pop Chorus to find out who feels the major reason for 'Idol's' lackluster season isn't the talent, but the gaping hole left by Paula's departure.

Phinesse Demps says:

♦ Paula was -- and I can't believe I am saying this -- but when you look back, she was the most professional of the judges. She advised contestants from experience and really set them at ease.
♦ Ellen DeGeneres tends to feel bad about being critical and is always apologizing, where Paula did it in a tactful, kind way. Now we see Randy feeling confused as a judge and Kara trying to imitate Simon instead of giving sound advice. 'Idol' is in total chaos.
♦ Paula's departure began a downturn in the quality of the show. Now Simon is leaving after this season? Can we say bye-bye, 'American Idol'?