‘American Idol’ season 12 premiere review

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Photo from imdb.com

Kaitlin Humphrey, Staff Writer

Cat fights, name-calling and headaches are just a few words that come to mind when describing the new panel of judges on Fox’s “American Idol”. The two-night premiere of the 12th season of American Idol aired Jan. 16 and 17. Keith Urban, Randy Jackson, Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj comprise the new panel of judges.

      The chemistry between the judges was a 360 from last year’s panel and took some time to adjust to. Carey and Minaj were constantly bickering, to the point of utter annoyance. Carey mocked Minaj’s fake British accent and criticized her clothing, especially her bus driver hats.

       Minaj seemed in another world most of the show, barely even looking at half the contestants and giving meaningless comments at the end of each audition. Carey received multiple comments from contestants about her being their idol, all of which she brushed off, acting like the diva she is. Urban played the part of the polite judge by never laughing at the horrid contestants and even encouraging some to continue their dreams. Jackson tried channeling former judge Simon Cowell by being rude and often demeaning.

     During the Chicago auditions, Urban had to leave early for a concert in Las Vegas, leaving Jackson to keep peace between the two divas of the show. Throughout Urban’s absence, Minaj based her judgment of each male contestant’s talent on their abs and not their voices. At one point she even got one to take his shirt off.

     Overall the panel of judges is annoying and does not live up to expectations. Compared to other “interactive talent shows” such as Fox’s “The X Factor” and NBC’s “The Voice”, “American Idol” lacks truly talented judges and doesn’t focus enough on the contestants, who range from terrible to tear-jerkingly amazing.

     One particular contestant, Lazaro Arbos broke hearts with his story and voice. Having severely stuttered since the age of 6 Arbos’ only way to effectively communicate is through song. His rendition of “Bridge over Troubled Water” would bring anyone to tears. Urban summed up what all the other judges said simply with “just sing all the time, man.”

     Contestant Angela Miller made it through to Hollywood with four yeses. Miller has suffered with hearing problems her whole life, having only 40 percent of hearing in her left ear and 20 percent in her right. She successfully overcame her disability and proved to the judges she deserved a spot in Hollywood with her powerful voice. All the judges were in awe and excited over Miller’s unique tone and automatically said yes to her. Jackson called her “one of the best voices of the day”.

     The talent level of the contestants supremely overpowers the entertainment value of the judges. Overall on “American Idol” the judges may be slipping but the talent remains consistently breathtaking.