This year marks the thirteenth season of American Idol and to celebrate we’re turning the tables on the show’s judges. See, those happy, smiling, very well-paid people on the other side of the judges’ table never actually get judged themselves during the show. Well, those days are over!

Thankfully, our pals over at Ranker are just as big of Idol addicts as we are. They put together a handy list of all the top judges from the last 13 seasons. We left off those guest stars who only put in an episode or two; you’ve got to do the day-in, day-out hard labor to make this VIP list!

Among the choices are the current Season 13 eye candy: Harry Connick, Jr., Keith Urban, and Jennifer Lopez. We also go way back to the dawn of Idol and the original judging panel: Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and, of course, Simon Cowell.

Other names might not be quite as well-known. Remember when Ellen DeGeneres gave Idol a try for a single season, or lesser-known music guru Kara DioGuardi found herself on the panel? Yeah, we didn’t either.

Now that you’re up to speed, sort through the 11 names below and pick where you think each judge belongs. Just try and keep Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey apart; they have a tendency to fight.

Favorite American Idol Judges


Elisabeth Kramer is an Assistant Editor at Wetpaint Entertainment and our resident Downton Abbey expert. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!