American Idol – X Factor : Different Attitudes

Simon Cowell will start his new show X Factor this fall on Fox.

American Idol seemed to be in line for a huge drop in the ratings after the departure of Simon Cowell last May. The ratings for the American Idol juggernaut have dropped but the show still is drawing more viewers than their competition by a large margin.

It was thought that Simon Cowell was the main attraction for viewers with his catty remarks about singers being karaoke, cruise ship singers and singers in a seedy hotel.

None of that kind of negativity remains with the current lineup of judges. With a few exceptions when Randy Jackson has made some scathing remarks about the contestants the show is mostly free of the cruel remarks that hurt not help an aspiring singer.

Jennifer Lopez showed her emotional side when she broke down after revealing to Chris Medina his road to being the American Idol had stopped in Las Vegas. I thought she had told him in a very kind way his dream of becoming the American Idol but she asked her fellow judges Steven Tyler and Randy Jackson if she had made her statement in the best way possible under the situation.

Medina was touched when he saw the replay on television of how she reacted after telling him the bad news. Some people have questioned his motives about having the story of his girlfriend told but I believe he only did it to try to help her since he had the chance and jumped at it as did the Fox network producers who featured the story and the judges had her meet them after Medina had sung at his audition.

That was only one example of a kinder American Idol this year. It isn’t fair to compare X Factor since it hasn’t even aired yet but with the presence of Simon Cowell viewers can expect the same vitriolic criticism he leveled at American Idol contestants but his fans expect to hear his pithy remarks to the contestants.

A major difference in the two shows is that while American Idol may award a recording contract to the winner the X Factor will reward a $5 million contract to the winner. It is possible a 12 year old could win that contract or someone more than 100 years old since the age limit is 12-whatever age shows up for the auditions as opposed to the 15-28 age limit for American Idol

Fox network will be a winner either way since they will carry both shows this year and both shows should be ratings behemoths that will enrich the Fox coffers by the end of they year.

The judges for X Factor are still not set the last I knew with Cowell the only one sure to be on the panel. Among names being rumored to have a chance to be judges are Cheryl Cole and Paula Abdul having a chance if her CBS show Live to Dance does not return for another season leaving her free to join the judges on X Factor. I believe Cowell would like to have Paula at his side since their chemistry before Paula left American Idol was volatile at times but I think they really get along well for the most part.


Author: Andrew Godfrey

Retired from newspaper work after 38 years. Had served in the Army in Hawaii and Vietnam in the 60's. Am now retired and living in Sulphur, Louisiana.

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