So it seems that the producers didn't listen to our plea/suggestions a few weeks ago on how to rein this show into its allotted time, and now they've had a few weeks of egregious overruns. This is truly unacceptable and unnecessary. We've got a solid plan to condense this entire series down. Way down. We're talking 15-minute performance nights and five-minute results nights. They could air some of their other actual shows in the remaining time, or just fill it with Ford/Coke commercials like they are wont to do anyway. That way, there'd be no pesky show to interfere with all the product placements.
Minute 1: Obligatory introductions of judges and Seacrest so they can show off their outfits and smile.
Minute 2: The mentor of the week gives one big gushing speech about how everyone was wonderful. No footage of them standing lamely by a piano, or a history of their accomplishments gets shown.
Minutes 3 & 4: Adam Lambert blows away all convention again with whatever this week's theme is.
Minute 5: Simon's comments. None of the other judges get to talk; they just have to nod or shoot angry looks at Simon for calling it either wonderful or too theatrical.
Minutes 6 & 7: Danny Gokey does his predictable Danny Gokey thing to whatever this week's theme is.
Minute 8: Simon says it was a bit boring, but that he understands why America loves Danny. Audience booing.
Minutes 9-12: Highlights from the rehearsal footage of the other remaining contestants. It's pretty much a foregone conclusion that Gokey and Lambert will be the finalists, so why even pretend anymore? Just do a snippets reel and the audience can vote on who the worst person of the night was.
Minute 13: The non-Gokey/Lambert contestants stand on stage while Simon gives his thoughts on who sounded the most cabaret or karaoke and who was surprisingly passable.
Minute 14: Ryan gives out all of the dial-in numbers. Cautions that these are 866 numbers and that standard text messaging rates apply.
Minute 15: Seacrest wishes everyone a good night. Kara says "artistry," Randy says "dawg" and Paula babbles randomly, but her speech gets cut off by the start of the next show on Fox.
Minute 1: Introductions of Seacrest and the judges, so Ryan can make some snarky comment about Simon and the audience applause gives him his weekly dose of validation for having an opinion.
Minute 2: Seacrest calls all the contestants who aren't Gokey and Lambert down to the center stage and they look sad/surprised.
Minute 3: Ryan asks Simon who should go home. Simon tosses out the name of his chosen punching bag of the week. Audience booing ensues.
Minute 4: Ryan sends most of the remaining contestants back to the couch, then tells the bottom two who America hated the most.
Minute 5: The eliminee gets to sing their song, until it is cut off by a Ford commercial.
Thoughts on how to make Idol shorter? Anything else extraneous we can trim?
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