For Some 'American Idol' Fans, Simon's Exit Is The End
By The Pop Chorus Posted May 25th 2010 04:50PM
This evening begins the two-night finale of the ninth 'American Idol,' a season we'll remember less for its lack of talent than as the last hurrah of Simon Cowell, the biting Brit who was never afraid to call it like he saw it. Simon is departing 'Idol' to host 'The X Factor,' an American descendant of a singing competition he created in Britain.
In the thick of finale season ('Lost,' 'Law & Order' and '24' said their goodbyes in the last couple days), some viewers are treating Simon's last 'Idol' appearance as the series finale. After the jump, read the logic our Pop Chorus has to offer behind saying sayonara to 'American Idol' along with Simon.
Jennifer Kathleen Gibbons says:
He's never written a song. Don't dare play country music around him. (Wait -- play some for him, then hear him tee off on it.) He doesn't do well with divas, drama kings or queens. Yet he has changed the way Americans hear music today. Simon Cowell, known for his biting words, raised eyebrows and black T-shirts, has always been the judge who says the right thing at the right time, who doesn't suffer fools gladly, and who could make someone a star on a whim. I used to watch 'Idol' regularly, and not for Cowell's mean comments ... I liked it when he praised someone, when he talked about why the performance stood out.
I fell out of love with 'AI' two years ago; the auditions felt too 'Gong Show'-ish, everyone was too plastic, too Hollywood-like. With Simon leaving, I doubt I'll ever watch again. They might get another crabby British guy, but he won't have something basic: The love for music Cowell has. If it wasn't for him, Jennifer Hudson wouldn't have won an Oscar, Fantasia never would have performed for Elton John and President Bush, and our lives would've been a bit more drab. Here's to you, Mr. Cowell. Spring won't be the same without you.
Amara Mahmood writes:
From day one, Simon Cowell was the judge everyone loved to hate. With his brash critiques and British accent, he was easy to despise. The thing is, he said what people were really thinking. Simon was never afraid to tell someone they were "dreadful" or "the worst." He said it so matter-of-fact, you couldn't disagree.
Simon's honesty has always been a refreshing change of pace. Candor is not something that comes easily in the world of reality competitions. We live in a society so obsessed with being politically correct all the time, it's frustrating not to be able to tell someone to their face that they are "dreadful," and Simon does the dirty work for us. We can live out our fantasies of being brazenly honest through him. Simon is never sorry for being right. Without him, I'm afraid, 'American Idol' will become just plain boring. Randy, Ellen and Kara are fine judges, but they aren't direct. They beat around the bush, vaguely telling someone they kinda-sorta didn't really like their performance. 'Idol' will become a love-fest, and I don't really want to see that. I want to see people get told the truth. They need to face reality. Without Simon, that just won't happen.
Watch the Girls on Pop wonder if Simon's departure spells the end of 'American Idol':
Benjamin Williams says:
Simon Cowell is about to bid farewell to the show he helped build. Long gone will be the days of seeing Simon in the spotlight, letting contestants know what he truly thinks of their performances. Hate him or love him, Simon is a pompous pain in the rear end (something he's never denied), but isn't that the reason we embraced him to begin with? He's the backbone of the show.
I'll miss the old grouch bag. Losing Simon will certainly cause the show's fan base to rethink tuning in for each episode. Come Wednesday, when the winner of season nine is declared and the final credits role, the circus that was Simon Cowell will be gone forever. No matter how absurd it gets, the show will go on -- 'American Idol' will still have more artists gracing the stages with both breathtaking and lackluster performances, and millions of adoring fans will still watch. America will always embrace the show for discovering new talent and allowing ordinary people, like myself, to have a say in who we believe deserves to be crowned the next 'Idol.' But when the engine fires up next season and the auditions begin, Simon and I will both be continuing our lives without 'American Idol.'
Kate Chapman says:
Let's face it: No one watches 'American Idol' each week to see if Ryan Seacrest will finally be taller than a contestant. (That's a little game I like to play, but it's on the sidelines.) A faithful Ellen DeGeneres fan, I hoped swapping Paula for Ellen would bring more of a comedic perspective, as well as some much-needed honesty, but I quickly discovered Ellen is quite the tenderhearted one. The honesty from the judging panel continued to come -- as it always has -- in undiluted fashion from Simon Cowell.
From the start, critical viewers have painted him the insensitive, heartless bully, but Simon has undeniably made 'American Idol' what it is. Viewers return each week to see what crass comments will emerge from Simon -- not to count how many times Randy Jackson says "yo" or "dog." Simon is the show's most recognizable figure, and as much as some viewers may yearn for the "jerk" label to stick, when Simon critiques a performance as "dreadful," it's because it is. Simon's critiques lend credibility as well as entertainment. Balancing causticity, hilarity, sincerity and probably some other -ities is classically, exclusively Simon. I think the producers know better than to attempt a cheapened imitation replacement. I dare say Simon is irreplaceable. The loss of someone who rivals the maudlin auditions in terms of sheer entertainment value ... that's something I don't think I can recover from.
Read more from The Pop Chorus: Paula Abdul's Absence Leaves Major Void in 'American Idol'
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