American Idol Coming to an End?July 24th, 2012
By Dan Reagans
For some, actress/singer Jennifer Lopez’s name has become synonymous with breakups and departures over the years. Whether it’s her tumultuous on again, off again romances or parting ways with a record label, it’s clear that Lopez is a phenomenal woman who comes and goes at her own will. The latest entity to see J. Lo’s backside was the less and less popular reality competition American Idol.
The Bronx-bred triple threat announced she’d be leaving her post as an Idol judge at the end of the season to pursue film among other things. Wasting no time for viewers to scratch their heads and wonder why, the show’s producers quickly filled the vacated slot with R&B songbird Mariah Carey. While there are undoubtedly more folks happy than sad by the switch, the success of this latest development remains to be seen.
Ten years removed from its booming 2002 FOX debut, Season 11 has brought the biggest ratings drop in the show’s history. Down by a whopping 23 percent, many are left pondering if it’s time for a final curtain call for the long-standing reality competition. Although it’s certain that the acquisition of MiMi will guarantee a spike in ratings, it may not be enough to compete with hot shot Idol replicas like The Voice or X-Factor. No longer the hip “new” talent search series, Idol is far from the TV juggernaut it once was. Banking on Carey’s star power to help bring things back to normal may be a sign of the times for the program.
While a cancellation may or may not be in the show’s immediate future, viewers shouldn’t be surprised to see a time slot change as playing musical chairs with judges will no longer suffice. Unless network producers embark on a total Idol revamp and perhaps make it more engaging like its two-season-old competitor The Voice (where contestants are drafted and coached by celebrity judges), the American Idol dynasty will continue to wither and eventually fall.