Friday, April 24, 2009


Our mothers always told us, "If you can't say something nice about someone, don't say anything at all." Sorry, mom, right now I'm about to say something unkind that I know everyone else has been thinking all along: It's time for the Americal Idol powers that be to pack up Kara DioGuardi and send her back to where she came from. "Kara, you're going home." (Cue Carrie Underwood's season 8 exit song.) How sweet those words would be to these ears. I don't care how many hits she's played a role in or how many superstars she's worked with, as an Idol judge, she's added absolutely zero to the peanut gallery this season.

And worse, at times, she makes Paula Abdul look like the smartest woman on the planet. It's bad enough that she mangled the title of Saturday Night Fever during disco week ("Saturday Night Live"? Indeed!), but at times she comes across like an overeager intern who can't believe her good fortune. By now we're all used to Randy's mad pitchy non-critiques (a real review would never include the words, "I don't know..." and "It was alright") and Paula's wackiness (which, in a strange way, keeps me watching long after nasty megalomaniac Simon has begun to bore me to tears), but if you're going to bring on a fourth wheel, at least make it someone who is somewhat likeable with a strong point of view.

I may be in the minority here, but Quentin Tarantino comes to mind. His mentorship during movie soundtrack week actually surprised me because some of his musical direction was stronger than the lame advice given by performers who make their living creating music. When he told Anoop Desai to dirty up "Everything I Do (I Do It For You)" and Matt Giraud to keep it simple, stupid, when singing "Have You Ever Really Love A Woman," I nodded in agreement. And had Matt followed Quentin's advice, he may not have ended up the lowest vote getter, prompting the judges to prematurely use a save that may have been better served down the road on frequent bottom-three dweller Allison Iraheta.

Also in Quentin's favor: During his season three stint as guest judge, he dared to tell that red-headed stranger and Frank Sinatra manqué John Stevens that he straight up did not like him. Kara has had nearly an entire season, and she has yet to make even a fraction of the impression Quentin made at that moment. And now, due to the time crunch, we don't even get to hear from all three original judges after each performance. Would anyone even notice -- or care -- if Kara were to suddenly vanish never to be heard from (on Idol) again? Matt Giraud would probably be more missed.
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