Filling judge Paula Abdul’s seat was no easy task. After all, the petite, bubbly pop singer and choreographer has a personality that is hard to match. Always positive and encouraging, Abdul was the softy of the bunch. Contestants knew they could count on Adul for some worthy praise.
Comedian Ellen DeGeneres came aboard American Idol, arriving well after the heralded auditions. She’s a bit of a soft touch, too, trying to fit in and find her way on the show that showcases talented singers. People didn’t know quite what to expect from the funny lady who hosts her own talk show, Ellen. Jokes seemed out-of-place under such competitive circumstances and sometimes bad performances.
DeGeneres feels she was walking a fine line during this year’s run of American Idol. Adapting to a new job can be challenging. There is much to observe, so much to learn, plus you want to do things right. Fitting in with the rest of the panel of judges is also important. Her new gig has definitely been interesting.
Image is something for Ellen to consider. Can you picture someone who makes their living being funny having to lower the hammer on a lackluster performance from one of the Idol contestants? Figuring out what role to play hasn’t been easy. Ellen pledges to be herself for the upcoming season, a combination of comedy with a serious side, sans the rudeness of “you know who,” Simon Cowell.
With the focus being on Simon’s departure, (this was his last season on Idol), there wasn’t much emphasis on developing Ellen as a judge. No doubt about it, next year will be different without the frank, abrupt, and curt comments that only Cowell can make. Let’s face it, people, it’s Simon’s show.
The search for Cowell’s replacement continues. It will be difficult not to make the comparisons when the new judge is finally named. After all, Kara Dioguardi has to have someone to side with on the more critical end of the spectrum. Randy and Ellen were more encouraging, even when they disliked a performance.
As a judge on American Idol, Ellen has an opportunity to develop fresh talent for her new record label, eleveneleven. In addition, she’ll be surrounded by musicians, (Randy and Kara, for starters), who can show her the ropes and help her learn about the record business. DeGeneres has signed her first artist, YouTube sensation Greyson Chance who rocked on his cover of Lady Gaga’s “Paparazzi.” (To see Greyson on Ellen, click here.)
Ellen plans to attend Season 10 auditions for American Idol this year. She knows what she’s looking for in a contestant: singers who are unique and need a break. Musicians searching for a forum to display their talents. Performers with personality. These are the artists who could make and sell good records. Draw hundreds of fans. These are the ones who can become superstars.
See DeGeneres on her TBS special, Ellen’s Somewhat Special Special, airing June 27 at 9p.m. ET/8C.