Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Idol Chatter

We’re down to the finals on “American Idol” this week.

The big winner? Everyone who quit watching already.

It’s now down to a “human beat box” (And the judges have been proving all season just how desperately out of touch they are when they call this white kid “unique” for doing something the black kids in my junior high P.E. class circa 1984 used to do in the locker room) vs. a seventeen-year-old that sings with slightly less soul than C3-PO.

This show is based on a British show with a British formula for finding the next pop star, all while overlooking one crucial element:

British pop sucks.

I was watching a show on BBC America a couple of weeks ago that was going for a “hip” feel by using a British pop song. When I heard it, I reflexively reached for my cell phone--- The intro to the song sounded that much like a bad ring tone.

The show was supposed to be improved by the addition of a real house band--- Yet with few notable exceptions (Those being when they played the songs wrong, such as Haley Scarnato’s rendition of “Brass In Pocket” and Jordin Sparks’ version of “Living On A Prayer”, a song so simple that a guitar, if thrown off a cliff, can play it by itself as it bangs against the jagged rocks on the way down), it still sounds like a bad karaoke CD.

Call me a pop culture curmudgeon if you must. But one thing you notice as you grow older is that increasingly, “pop culture” is an oxymoron, and the real purpose of “American Idol” is to give us something to chatter about between football season and baseball season.

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