American Idol: Season 10, Episode 1 – “Let’s see what hatches”

American Idol: Season 10, Episode 1 – “Let’s see what hatches”

Tonight’s the night (please don’t start singing the Black-Eyed Peas – I hate that song…).  The wait is over.  The new season of American Idol is here, along with my insightful, thought provoking, and oh so sarcastic commentary on the journey.   It was with great anticipation that I picked up Mazzio’s pizza for the family, fired up the TiVo, and dove headlong in to season 10.

Right off the bat we were treated to a snazzy new opening.  Bigger graphics, past winners, and also the inclusion of those Idols that went on to be huge stars without the crown (I counted three non winners in the open title sequence.  Quick – who can name them all?)*  I was fully prepared to be underwhelmed by the show tonight.  Guess what?  I was wrong.

When I heard that Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez where the new judges I thought – “whhaaaat?”  That’s the best they can do?  No Harry Connick, Jr.?  After seeing them, though, I have to tell you  – they really work well.  I like the dynamic between them and Randy.  Sure – there’s no sharp-tongued Brit to cut the contestants down to size anymore – but then again, no one could fill Simon’s role.  Instead, Steven had a sharp wit and a playfulness about him that was just the right mix of giddy and gravitas.  J-Lo (God help me, I just typed the word “J-Lo” without a hint of irony at all…) was much more open and engaging than I thought she would be.  I found myself wanting to like her…and succeeding.  Randy inherited Simon’s seat at the end of the table, and seemed to take on the mantle of elder statesman on the panel.  Time will tell if he can truly fulfill that role, but the star power of Tyler and Lopez ensure that he won’t have to carry the show on his own.

All in all, what followed was an entertaining two hours. The night had its share of memorable moments, with a few misses as well:

  • The entire opening was just a BIT overwrought.  I understand the art of self promotion, but to watch the opening piece on the new judges, you would think the American Idol producers had chosen the next Pope, elected our 45th president, AND resurrected Michael Jackson from the dead for a sold-out, one-night show at the Boys and Girls Club of America national convention.  (What…too soon?)

  • Just as we sat down to watch, my wife turned to me and asked if I thought Steven Tyler would be able to control himself on the show.  Not two minutes later, he throws down the following words of wisdom from the judges table: Well hellfire, save the matches, @$&# a duck and see what hatches.” Good God, I’m glad Ellen is gone.  This is going to be a lot of fun.

  • I have to know if the backflip guy got charged for the HD camera he destroyed, and the cameraman’s appendix he burst, during one of the opening clips.  EPIC FAIL.

  • Caleb Hawley made the most of his 2 minutes and rocked a distinct Constantine vibe while drawing Steven into a bit of a jam session during his song.  It was a nice moment for Caleb and highlighted the fact the Steven is a real musician – he doesn’t just play one on TV.

  • Robbie Rosen from New York – I’m glad that you made it out of the wheelchair.  This kid had a great voice, and a little Travolta leaking out around the edges of his smile.  A bit of advice Robbie – if you make it to the big show and 70’s week, do NOT let them put you in a white leisure suit.  It won’t end well.

  • Chris Cordiero from NJ – congrats on getting your eagle scout badge soon.  I hope you have another project you can work on.  After this appearance on Idol, I think you will find you have a lot of free time on your social calendar.  Ditto for Michael Perotto from Worcester.  Nervous belching = limited dating options.

  • How can you not love Ashley Sullivan?  She made her national television debut walking out of a port-a-potty.  I don’t care if she can sing – she’s got balls.  She was hilarious, full of energy, and impossible to ignore.  Here’s hoping that she can “help mainstream get with Liza Minnelli”, and that Steven can “personally work that into something good”.     

  • At one point in the show, Steven made an awkward joke about the length of Victoria Huggins from North Carolina’s skirt.  Showing what GRITS (girls raised in the South) are made of, she gestured to her legs and said, “I gotta appeal to the boy audience”, then without missing a beat, gestured to her skirt and said, “but yet, I want to be a lady.  Just the right amount of leg”.  Score one for Victoria – I love her already.

  • Kudos to the producers for deciding to up the ratio of good singers to bad singers on the premiere episode.  There were still a good number of train wrecks for us all to gawk at – but we got to see far more of the talent that this season has to offer.  I hope they keep it up for the rest of the season.  I had enough of my children singing “Pants on the Ground” last year, to hold me over until retirement.  On the other hand, they are now singing “Party in the USA” by Miley Cyrus.  One could make the argument that I’ve merely traded one icepick in the ear for another.

  • We were treated to more inspirational stories about hardship and following dreams.  The story of Melinda Ademi and her family’s flight from Kosovo to the US was both touching and inspiring.  It’s great to see someone come to this country and give their children the chance to live the American dream.  Still, it would be nice to see one of the backstory pieces on someone – highlighting their hopes and their dreams – end with their epic crash and burn at the audition, and a final slow motion shot of them flipping off the camera’s as they barrel their way out of the convention center shouting about being the next Whitney Houston.  (Hey, I said I was glad to see less of the bad singers – I didn’t say that I wanted to completely eliminate them.  I enjoy a little emotional carnage as much as the next person.)

So there you have it.  The show closed, surprisingly, with a singer who had a sad story and a good voice.  What are the odds?  (I guess some things aren’t going to be different this year…)  All in all, though, this was a solid first show of the season.  I hope they keep the momentum rolling and find some good talent this year.  We’ll see, every Wednesday and Thursday for the next few months.  Tomorrow night – New Orleans.  I can’t wait to see the Kid Rock/Vanilla Ice love child with the Michael Jackson glove.  Until then, stay tuned and I’ll stay sarcastic.  Word Zombie out.

* Chris Daughtry, Adam Lambert, and Jennifer Hudson

© 2011, The Word Zombie. All rights reserved.

One Reply to “American Idol: Season 10, Episode 1 – “Let’s see what hatches””

  1. Hello, I am the tumbler on idol… there is an extreme story behind how and why that happened… If you interested, I would love to share… its epic!!!
    but to answer your cameras.
    The camera man was not injured… one foot hit his face, and the other hit the camera… he was mad at first, apologized, and thanked me because he had been working for idol for years and never had the opportunity to be on camera…
    Right before i auditioned for the executive producers, they exclaimed to me that, ” you know the camera man is going to sue the shit out of us, and you may be liable… Then I was expected to audition.
    You can see me on facebook, or youtube. beltitout101… there are some old videos of me singing.
    feel free to contact me at
    Thanks, Timothy Willy

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