Monday, October 03, 2005

Malaysian, Australian & American Idols - A Reality Check

I normally don't blog on TV shows such as the Whatever Idol or its happenings. However, a couple of events have motivated me to do so.

A friend just arrived back from Malaysia where she bemoaned that the better singer, personality and performer didn't win the title of Malaysian Idol. Just in case you ask, my friend is Chinese Malaysian so there is no ethnic sympathies involved at all - in fact the contrary would be true.

The Malaysian judges commented that 1.2 million Malaysian voters couldn't be wrong. That's technically not correct because some would have each voted a few hundred times, but his general point has merit.

I happened to watch a few of the last series of the American Idol. I am not even a fan though I do enjoy good music and singing (provided someone, not me, sings). I did the viewing only as a group thingy.

What annoyed me initially was when one of the better singers was booted out from the top 8 or so. She was Jessie 'somebody', a sweet but short and slightly tubby looking lady. But her voice was terrific. There were others whose singing were far worse than hers, yet they survived. I thought the eventual No 2, a bloke, was the better singer but he lacked the fresh Charlie-Angel looks that the winner possessed.

Tonight in Australia one of the better singers, Roxanne Lebrasse, was booted out. I could easily pick 3 others who deserved to go, but alas, the phone voting has decided Roxanne won't make the last 8. Naturally some of my friends who were rooting for her were upset. And so were some of the judges and even the comperes. Roxanne has been fantastically popular within the Idol camp, always with a dimpled smile on her sweet face.

I told my friends that one of the others, a very mediocre singer, would make it at least to the last 3, if not winning the title itself. He is immmesely popular with the viewing audience, and unlike poor though better performing Roxanne, the bloke with the fruit salad hair, Lee, has a hugh support base who will ensure he is voted into the top 3 despite his very ordinary singing.

In the end, if we analyse the show properly and re-examine the title of 'Idol' again, and realising that it is not a talent time show, we should understand that the winner will be the one who has a powerful support base, and not necessarily the better singer or performer.

That's what 'Idol' means and involves. It is of course a show that is sponsored by telephone companies. So don't complain about fairness or lack of - the winner was, is and will always be the one with the maximum telephone or SMS votes - what the judges said have very little influence at all other than their entertainment value.

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