American Idolatry

Weeks ago I was listening to my local affiliate of NPR while I drove to work. I listen to NPR because I am pretentious and also because I have yet to find any non-country radio stations up here. The guys were talking about how even though there are all kinds of things going on with the state legislature, KSL News in SLC reported that the highest number of hits on their website were to do with the American Idol auditions.

The NPR guys were pretty funny about it in their dry, dry voices. "So, it seems that even though the state legislature is in session and there are actually quite a lot of things going on that will impact the people of this great state, all you actually want to hear about is this American Idol program. I must say here, publicly, that I do not watch American Idol. Perhaps I'm not the best person to discuss it. However, that appears to be all you unwashed masses care about, so, fine. Let's talk. Let's put our years and years of experience in journalism, broadcasting, and politics to this task. Let's talk about stupid, stupid American Idol and how that one guy from Utah got on there and brayed like a donkey. Let's talk about that instead of discussing the part where your taxpayer dollars, which, really, from what I'm seeing out of you people, should pretty much all go to education. And possibly birth control." (Note: not an actual transcription, but you know that's what they meant.)

It was pretty funny, only tonight? I am not even laughing. I am not laughing because I sat down at 8pm to watch House, which is the 1 television show that I watch. Except for The Office. And Masterpiece Theatre, especially if they're doing some sumptuous literary adaptation like they did the other week with Jane Eyre. Holy crap I did not know that Jane and Mr. Rochester made out on Jane's bed like that. Which . . . whew. I need to go watch me some of that again.

Anyway, want to know what's on instead of my beloved Greg House? Some stupid 2-hour-long version of stupid American Idol. Now I officially hate that show even more. Now it is affecting my life. It has become some sort of bloated whale on a beach somewhere that just needs to get stuffed full of dynamite and blown up like on that one video.


foodie said... [reply]

I have to also admit that parts of "that show of which we do not speak" have irritated me a little more this season than ever before. I am normally a fan, but I can see how it would be annoying when you are not, and it gets in the way of what you really want to watch!!!

Lady Steed said... [reply]

Amen sister.

Also, I really miss the Utah NPR stations. Their programming was much more interesting than the one that I get here in the Bay Area

Scully said... [reply]

I was most unhappy about the pre-empting of House when I checked out the TV Guide yesterday. I can't decide if I think American Idol is simply ridiculous or positively exploitive. Oh, and that adaptation of Jane Eyre prompted me to re-read the book. They don't actually make out on her bed, horizontally, but they do spend some quality time in his arm chair in the library or study or whatever. Vertically struggling not to make out. Still, pretty good times with Toby Stephens - I mean Mr. Rochester. Oh, and does our love of Mr. Rochester pre-dispose us to like characters like Gregory House? And would you be at all surprised to find out House's abusive dad once forced him into a marriage with a mad, drunk, lecherous, possibly syphilitic woman in the West Indies?

Sarita said... [reply]

AI (which can be taken as American Idol or Artifical Intellegence, take your pick....although, I'm pretty sure Paula Abdul doesnt even have the artifical kind)is all well and good for those who enjoy it once a week.

What I fail to comprehend is why it has to become an entire lifestyle for the whole country. It's like it's I'm being forced into idol worship. Which cant be a good thing.

You have your little scheduled programming, and I'll have mine. But heaven help you if you encroach on my territory.

Sarita said... [reply]

*gasp* I just had a crippling fear that AI might be interferring with my watching of Bones, one of my 2 shows I watch without waiting for the DVD osf the season to come out. Yes, so, Bones is to be postponed until MARCH 14TH so people can watch their precious AI.

Something must be done.

Kristeee said... [reply]

I don't understand why the show's so montrously popular. I'm just glad it's not on every night. You know people would watch it. But hey, while it's on, you can watch Ugly Betty re-runs on abc.com :)

Nemesis said... [reply]

I KNOW! Sarita, this is my point exactly. It's not content to be a regular show--it has to become this massive, sprawling, 3.5-hours-per-week thing that knuckles all the good shows under. So we have to trade intelligent, well-written, Emmy-winning dialog for the drunken, smacked-out ramblings of Paula Abdul.


kristen said... [reply]

Dude--you're trashing one of my favorite shows. Granted there's an overkill (drawing out what could be accomplished in a half hour to make it an hour, etc). That is why I've begun DVR-ing it--so I can fast forward through all the commercials and not waste so much time.

To me it's clean entertainment, a lot better than all the garbage and smut we see on television today.

I think it all has to do with ratings. They know how popular it is and they are capitalizing on it. A lot of new shows tank, so networks have to bank on their existing shows that draw in lots of viewers.

I have to say that I saw the first 15 minutes of an episode of House and was totally turned off; ALL the subplots had to do with sex. Plus, that guy bugs.

Saxon said... [reply]

They've started showing it on ITV3 over here in the UK. Even we can't escape it..

Although the third series of House and the 2nd series of Grey Anatomy start soon,

Azúcar said... [reply]

I've never been a hardcore fan, but I will occasionally watch a show.

I'll tell you exactly why it's popular:

1. You can watch it with your kids
2. You can watch it with your mom
3. It's a popularity contest
4. You get to vote


You'll find me over on the CW watching Gilmore Girls and Veronica Mars.

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