This comes so far out of left field, it’s guaranteed to be a home run. As we were all sitting around, shaking our heads and wondering how on earth American Idol could continue to be interesting during its post-Paulum depression, the FOX executives were doing something absolutely genius: They were hiring Ellen Degeneres.
Ellen will take the fourth judge’s seat after its preliminary auditions phase (so basically she gets to miss out on the worst part.) “I’ve watched since the beginning and I’ve always been a huge fan, so getting this job is a dream come true,” said Ellen.
It’s funny this should happen today. I’ve been absent from around here for awhile — I was at a cabin in the middle of Idaho, for anyone who’s interested — and this morning I found myself sitting in front of the TV as it happened to be tuned to Ellen. It’s been years since I’ve watched her show, and I was just struck with how creative and entertaining and all-around brilliant her show is. I was like “I wish I had the opportunity to see more of her.” AND NOW I WILL!
Ya know, I really thought Paula was irreplaceable on that show. I bet she thought that, too. But they didn’t try to find another Paula — they found her polar opposite. I think Ellen will continue Paula’s tradition of treating the contestants with kindness, but she’ll be perceptive and (intentionally) funny and sober in the process, and I think it’ll be fantastic for the show. Ellen seems to have lately really embraced her inner butch lesbian — and I’m loving the look on her — and I think it’ll be fantastic to have an openly gay presence on the show. I’m certain it’ll prevent Ryan and Simon from hinting at one another’s homosexuality as an insult, which was getting really really old.
Well-played, my friends at FOX.