March 12, 2010

"With the goosebumpily gravel-voiced Alex Lambert and the adorably indie Lilly Scott inexplicably and tragically out of the running..."

"... this show is going to get so shark-jumpingly bad that it might as well be filmed on location at Sea World from now on."

Oh, come on. It's not that bad. First, "jumping the shark" doesn't mean getting dull. It means doing something desperately weird and out of keeping with what was good about a show. That's not this. Second, Paige Miles survived, thwarting the theory that Americans are racist. Third, Alex Lambert and Lilly Scott were low energy and they're responsible for their own low vote tabulation. Fourth, we already had a Lambert last year. Fifth, it's "American Idol." It's always been in large part about being kind of bad and loving somebody who doesn't deserve it and failing to appreciate somebody else who was better.

54 comments:

Lem said...

Oh, come on. It's not that bad.

Don't forget to turn off the lights Professor ;)

wv - butifics

victoria said...

Thank god I never got sucked in to the bad karaoke that is "American Idol". Give me some "Housewives" that's real drama!! (Kidding)


Vicki from Pasadena

Penny said...

"... it's "American Idol." It's always been in large part about being kind of bad and loving somebody who doesn't deserve it and failing to appreciate somebody else who was better."

Does anyone do "clever" better than Althouse?

MadisonMan said...

I wasn't sad that Lilly got sent home. Her performance this week was blah, and she had no real voting bloc. Crystal has the female indie vote locked up.

But to send Alex home instead of Aaron -- destined for, what, 9th place? -- or Andrew who has done nothing for weeks? One scratches the head. But Alex leaving was spellbinding television.

Trooper York said...

I love Idol Vicky but you are right about the Real Housewives.

Because they are real New Yorkers and a lot of fun!

Lance said...

Um, the reason TV producers do "something desperately weird and out of keeping with what was good about a show" is because the show is getting dull.

Fonzie didn't jump that fish for the heckuvit.

Trooper York said...

Candygram?

PatCA said...

I think Alex was so uncomfortable on stage he made people nervous.

It is not the old AI, though.

Paula!

SteveR said...

Mostly the males were not distinguishable, Michael's performance was clearly better this week, but the losing margin for Alex Lambert was probably not that great. Same for the females, I wouldn't read too much into the eliminations at this point.

Other than Crystal, for the right reasons and Casey for the obvious reasons, I think its a close race.

Dangerous Dreamer said...

Or they could all just suck...which they do. Except for that blonde girl that's missing a tooth.

Trooper York said...

Dude I don't thing she sucks.

Unless you are talking about sucking on a fish taco.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Paddy O. said...

it's only a dolphin

Paddy O. said...
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Trooper York said...

Leave Larry Csonka out of this.

Trooper York said...

Come to think of it Cystal does kind of look like Larry. They are both missing a tooth in the same spot....how old is she.....I mean they played in Cleveland a lot and Larry liked to hit the jazz clubs for some strange hairy dirty hippie girls....yeah...it could be...it could be.

traditionalguy said...

How much longer will AI tease us? Baseball will begin, and March Madness will end, and the NBA will be in its plaoffs, and still the AI singers will want attention from us and fake wrestling type judges, and on, and on....At least the old Georgian woman does not have to watch a TV with FOX network on it.

ironrailsironweights said...

Sixth, it was a killer whale at Sea World, not a shark.

Peter

Trooper York said...

Still and all it is a lot shorter than one of Obama's state of the union speechs so count your blessings and pass the popcorn.

And let's all boo and hiss at Simon like he was a Supreme Court justice or something.

Paddy O. said...

"Come to think of it Cystal does kind of look like Larry."

My wife pointed out that Lilly Scott reminded her of the albino character from Princess Bride.

It was very hard to watch the rest of the show after that.

Trooper York said...

Well I would say that Michael Lynch looks like a famous person toobut I am afraid that he will kick my ass.

Joe said...

I've long concluded that no matter how bad a specific thing is, no matter how much it sucks by any definition, somebody, somewhere will think it's pure genius.

So it is with American Idol. This is exacerbated by the fact that the average person is simply unable to tell if someone is singing out of key (thus the Beach Boys became popular [who sang out of key even in the studio!].)

As with this specific complaint, the Alex and Lilly supporters are completely delusional. In case they couldn't hear, both were absolutely horrible singers by any definition. I could walk down to my local High School right now and find half a dozen people who can sing better. That they got this far was nothing short of a miracle; relish it while it lasted.

And besides, American Idol isn't about singing; it's a popularity contest. Moreover, it's so obviously fixed that I don't know why anyone takes it seriously.

Trooper York said...

I bet you think professional wrestling is fixed too.

Every party needs a party pooper.

Cedarford said...

Typical fan blogger who Hearted one contestant who then pronounces the show dead when her personal cutie-pie (Alex Lambert) got tossed early. (And ignores that this group has guys and gals well above Lambert II in performances)

Yeah, bad choice..but you can argue that Alex had loads of talent but had put himself at a real disadvantage by not working hard on his craft or trying himself before audiences to get seasoned.

And at least we should hope that Crystal is the unholy union of Larry Czonka (he was way back in the 60s and on the 72 team people of that era still talk about - looked like a prizefighter) and a dirty hippy girl. As the only person left in Cleveland whose job was not sent by the free traders to China is one guy making duck caller. Crystal if she goes far on Idol, could double Cleveland's exports, as Obama hopes.

Cedarford said...

Joe - "So it is with American Idol. This is exacerbated by the fact that the average person is simply unable to tell if someone is singing out of key (thus the Beach Boys became popular [who sang out of key even in the studio!].)"

WTF?

Of COURSE the Beach Boys had singers "out of key" - that is how you do layered harmonies.

The lead was in key. (Except Brian depending on the coke situation some days).

You want perfect, listen to Carl Wilson on "God Only Knows", "I Can Hear Music", his part on "California Girls".

Joe said...

Of COURSE the Beach Boys had singers "out of key" - that is how you do layered harmonies.

I think this just proves my point. Harmonies still have to be in key, idiot.

MadisonMan said...

Joe, are you trying to sound pompous?

MadisonMan said...

Ah, so you are.

I'm curious who here is saying AI is Pure Genius, as you proclaim.

Trooper York said...

Jeeez Joe, no wonder your neighbors don’t like you.

Mr. Wilson is not a good role model. Just sayn

Trooper York said...

Hey Cedarford, I found a picture of Cystal's parents....do you think....could it be...I just don't know?

Trooper York said...

And then I found out that Larry liked to hang out with a sketchy crowd!

In fact I heard he left his wife and moved in with Mercury Morris in a flat in Malibu....or maybe that was "Two and Half Men"...I don't know I watch too much TV.

Penny said...

"... it's "American Idol." It's always been in large part about being kind of bad and loving somebody who doesn't deserve it and failing to appreciate somebody else who was better."

Sorry about replaying this from Althouse's intro to this thread, but I'm gonna do it anyway if ONLY to show that once we get "passionate" about an American Idol singer, or say, even an American idol politician, we often put our subjective blinders on, moving full throttle forward to convince others of our own passionate and personally enlightened position.

There's no dialogue at this point. No questions asked. No change of position considered. We have our "sales hat" on, and when that doesn't work, we put on our friggin' "combat gear". lol

At least when I watch the "Housewives", and I watch them all, I'm changing my mind, week to week, as to who was top bitch.

Joe said...

I'm curious who here is saying AI is Pure Genius, as you proclaim.

Huh?

I was merely pointing out that pick anything and someone, somewhere, will think it's pure genius. In the case of talent shows, such people can get quite upset when their favorite, no matter how bad, loses.

I'm quite sure there are people who quite seriously believe William Hung is a good, if not great, singer.

(Does anyone really believe Alex Lambert or Lilly Scott were good enough to win American Idol? Seriously?)

Methadras said...

Actually Jump the Shark stems from the Happy Days episode when The Fonz water ski jumped off a ramp over a shark in his leather jacket. That's epitomized when the show finally took a turn for the worst. That's what Jump the Shark means.

Trooper York said...

That's only one meaning.

It also refers to a drunken evening when Bill Clinton pushed Greg Norman down the stairs and jumped over him to get at Chris Evert.

Everybody knows that.

SteveR said...

I'm quite sure there are people who quite seriously believe William Hung is a good, if not great, singer.


I'm quite sure you're quite wrong.

BJM said...
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The Crack Emcee said...

'It's always been in large part about being kind of bad and loving somebody who doesn't deserve it and failing to appreciate somebody else who was better."

And we wonder what's wrong with America today,..

BJM said...

@ Penny - Ain't that the truth? (Vicki is still top Housewives bitch, but Bethenny is closing fast.)

Can we vote Ellen DeGeneres off next?

Trooper York said...

Dude you are drunk. There is no bitchier bitch than Nene from the Real Housewives of Atlanta.

You look up Bitch in the dictonary and her picture is there.

Penny said...

Crack, I'm really proud of you right this minute.

Penny said...

Hopefully the shows' producers never see their way clear to set up some kind of voting mechanism for "Housewives". I'll be damned before I put on a pith helmet once a week.

Hat head is bad enough, but pith head?

peter hoh said...

I know the origins of the phrase, but it seems to me that "jumped the shark" has taken on a linguistic life of its own.

The gimmick, the stunt, the desperate attempt to revive interest in a flagging show -- that's part of the history of the phrase, but it's not essential to the meaning that has developed.

As I hear it being used, "jumped the shark" means "has become dull."

Lem said...

I never watch Real Housewives.. but if the websites are any indication there is nothing real about them.

Real housewives are not that thin.. as Tropper very well knows ;)

Lem said...

Apparently there is another analogous term (to jumping the shark) called "Nuking the fridge".

..an allusion to a scene early in the 2008 film Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. In the scene, the title character is hit by the blast of a nuclear weapon while hiding inside a lead-lined refrigerator in a desperate attempt at survival. The refrigerator is hurled a great distance through the sky and tumbles hard to the ground, while the structures surrounding it are utterly obliterated. A relatively-uninjured Jones emerges to witness the mushroom cloud miles away. Some film critics and fans of the series found the absurdity of this event disappointing and reflective of the decreased quality of the series. They then coined the term "nuking the fridge."

BJM said...

@ Trooper

Hey, I *hiccup* resemble that remark!

Nene is a piece of work, but she's more drama queen than stone cold bitch.

Vicki is toxic, you walk away from her type as quickly as you can.

Jim said...

My wife and I were watching this week and we've come to the conclusion that the judges have decided who they will praise and who they will knock before the performances ever take place.

There is no sane human being who could have watched Lilly Scott do that horrible rendition of "I Fall to Pieces" and think she either has a future in business or would have even passed the audition round with that performance. Yet the judges universally thought she did well. WTF?

And don't get me started on the contradictory advice they give to contestants week in and week around - go younger, that wasn't serious enough, take risks, you messed with the song too much, blah blah blah.

The producers have the right to override the phone calls with their own decisions (watch the closing credits) any time they want. The phone calls give the illusion of public input, but only so long as the public doesn't disagree with the actual decision makers too much.

BJM said...

@Jim

I totally agree, the judges have already telegraphed that it's the girl's turn this season. Why else would they choose such a weak field of guys?

I still don't believe Chris won solely on the vote last season, the producers couldn't risk Adam acting out and tainting the franchise.

Katie Stevens looks like the front runner in spite of weak performances, she fits the template.

Mick said...

Crystal and Casey are the frontrunners and will knock the Stones song out of the park next week. Although it's not really fair for them to do the Stones, since they will not have to even practice. They probably could have done one cold last week. They should have to do a Broadway number while the others do the Stones.

Andrea said...

"goosebumpily"? *stabs*

Stogie said...

Being the naive fool that I am, I do believe that the winners are selected by the voting audience; that there is no conspiracy theory at work with the producers or judges.

American Idol has been a great show and I have watched it without fail for the past five or six years. It is interesting to see new talent emerging from the pack of wanna-be's.

Joe, I think you are a snob and wrong about the average American not knowing when someone is in tune or not. I was never a fan of the Beach Boys, but I don't recall any serious out-of-tune situations in any of their recordings. If you know of one, be specific and point it out. I'll bet you can't.

I think I know music theory fairly well and have a good ear from playing bass with bands over the years, and I am active in music right now. I can sense the slightest out-of-tune condition in my bass. I can determine the key of a song within about five seconds after a band begins playing it.

Randy the judge at AI often accuses singers of "pitch problems" even when there are none. It has become a reflex with him.

Yes, AI is a popularity contest and the best singer doesn't always win. Look at Chris Daughtry. Look how long the awful Sanjay stayed on the show, perhaps because young teen girls liked him for other reasons than his voice.

However, the program does work well most of the time. Carrie Underwood is proof of that. Only someone with a tin ear would accuse Underwood of being "bad karaoke," Victoria.

Joe said...
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Joe said...

Stogie, I don't think you can accurately hear pitch, thus you dismiss what the judges say. Some people are born with this--one of my sons--but for others it takes time. I can tell if someone is off pitch, but not by how much. A trained voice teacher can tell you by how much. One reason Randy can hear pitch problems others can't is because he's a trained musician and tuning a guitar is an important skill.

By comparison, even though I did some dancing up to college, at best I can say a dancer is really bad, generally good or somewhere in the middle. Someone with more training could see both general mistakes and specific mistakes with specific dance styles. More importantly, someone with training can tell the difference between someone who is really good and someone who is great.

Another example that I'm quite familiar with is film/video editing. As I learned to edit and did it, I learned to see even the most subtle differences between frames in real time. Far more experiences film/video editors can see many things that I don't--it's part of their required skill set and is what sets them apart from the normal.

Calling people genuinely talented in a certain field snobs is simply absurd. I know that you are accomplished in some field and you would be a much more severe judge in that area than I, and most people, would be. I'm also quite sure that it annoys you when people in that field get a pass because they are good enough. (Or people not skilled in that field criticize you for being too harsh.) Does that make you a snob? No. (Now if someone says that their skill in a certain area of expertise endows them with superior judgment in all areas or somehow makes them superior human beings in general, than they'd be a snob. On the flip side, I'd say that simply dismissing the expertise of others is, itself, a form of snobbery.)

Methadras said...

Trooper York said...

Dude you are drunk. There is no bitchier bitch than Nene from the Real Housewives of Atlanta.

You look up Bitch in the dictonary and her picture is there.


My vote is still Vicki Gunvelson from the Housewives of Orange County. That pig faced bitch makes miss piggy look tame. Fuck her. NeNe is just cunty.

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