In the wake of the news that Simon Cowell will be leaving American Idol next season, rumours have already begun swirling in regards to his potential replacement. The first? Ryan Seacrest. Now, let’s take a moment to collectively cringe.
Firstly, though Ellen Degeneres is undeniably awesome, with Paula and Simon off the panel, the show will be lacking some serious musical clout. Sure, Kara DioGuardi is a music producer among other endeavours and Randy Jackson is, well, Randy Jackson “ but without the brains behind the organization, what’s the point? Don’t the majority of audiences tune in solely for Simon’s offhanded remarks? (Or maybe I’m just shallow.)
Second of all, while Ryan Seacrest has been hailed as a modern day Dick Clark (debatable), what will be he bring to the judge’s table other than his typical manufactured charisma? Sure, he’s built a career based on personality alone, but what gives him the authority to judge music? Sure, Ellen may not have the background, but at least she’s universally liked.
The moral of the story is that the show needs to maintain somewhat of its relevance or it will continue to lose the already waning interest that remains. In the wake of two crucial departures, the Idol machine will either continue to produce the occasional success story, or contestants will have to join the ranks of most musicians who rely on talent and talent alone.