American Idol is officially returning for Season 14, but should it be? After shaky ratings all season, the long-running singing competition’s future could’ve gone either way. But last week, the news that Idol would be back became official and it sounds like judges Harry Connick Jr., Jennifer Lopez, and Keith Urban will be returning too. Is this the best decision for Fox?
After the cancellation of Fox’s other vocal challenge show, The X Factor, we think keeping Idol around was a good choice. While it’s true that Idol really can’t compete with The Voice, when it comes down to it, they’re two very different shows. American Idol has been a staple for Fox since reality TV first began gaining popularity, and we’d be surprised if it took just one badly rated season to shut down the whole institution entirely.
Besides, given the chance, we think the current judges could breathe new life into the show. We love watching Harry critique the contestants’ performances, and not just because he is actually one of the most adorable humans ever. With his first year of judging behind him, we think Harry is just what the show needs to suck regular viewers back in. And now that Idol’s voting and viewer interaction has gone almost 100 percent to social media, the chances that fans will watch and stay involved are bound to increase.
Our best advice for the next go-round? Be extra picky with those golden tickets, guys. This year, there was more than one contestant who made it to the Top 30 who had us scratching our heads. There’s a lot of talent out there, but we’re looking for people who make us want to keep tuning in week after week, and this season, we felt less attached to the contestants than we usually do.
More good news for the show? Our trusty host Ryan Seacrest has reportedly signed on for an additional two years (including the upcoming Season 14), which is a decidedly good sign. Would someone with as much Hollywood know-how as Ryan stay aboard a sinking ship? Nah, we don’t think so.
Do you think American Idol should have said goodbye this year, or are you glad the show’s returning?