Tuesday, August 31, 2010

American Idol The Best Top 24 Ever Or Pure Marketing Hype

By: Rajdeep Brar

There will be no end in talking about American Idol. The buzz started sometime during the televised portion of the auditions - you must watch "the best top 24 ever." While I didn't completely buy it, after last year's disappointing group, I was somewhat inclined to want to believe it.

After these past two weeks of having the "best top 24 ever" crammed down my throat I finally had to stop and think about it. The final straw may have been when Ryan Seacrest announced Sony/ATV Music Publishing (a merger of Sony and ATV, which was owned by Michael Jackson) had given the go ahead for a Beatles night based on the "strength" of this year's contestants.

Are we really supposed to believe this? It's only the second week. Are we really supposed to buy that it's possible this all happened after the first week of performances? I'm sure these negotiations have been going on for a while. In fact I know they have because there was a Beatles medley in last the finale last year, and The Beatles were the catalyst for the British Invasion theme last season. Though we didn't actually get to hear any Beatles songs then.

I'm sure whoever was doing the negotiating with Sony crammed "the best top 24 ever" down their throats too.

So do we really have the best top 24 ever? Not in my opinion. It's true that this is only the third season of the show I have watched, but I can say just going off that limited knowledge that season 5 had an all around better group of contestants. I will also venture to say that there is no one this season that can touch Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood.

So why are they saying it? Why do they have to say it so much? The answer to the second question is probably because it's not true, but if they say it enough people will believe it. I have heard people repeat it around my office and message boards about the show, as if it's true. That's how marketing works.

The top 24 is already down to 16 and is anyone lamenting the loss of Colton Berry or Amy Davis? In two weeks most people probably won't remember who they are. Simon even told poor Colton that he should give up singing and get a real job. So if he's one of the best singers the show has ever had, then why would Simon say that?

In fact Simon's comments have been the same, if not more cruel, as they always have been. "That was ghastly," "you're boring," "that was like some horrible wedding performance," "it's old fashioned," etc etc. Simon certainly doesn't seem to believe it's the best ever, so why should we?

Simon has only shown real enthusiasm for one contestant. He seems to like Carly Smithson a little, but not as much as David. Simon says David is the one to beat, and he doesn't seem to care about anyone else even being in the competition. As David White from The Advocate writes - David Archuleta is the only male contestant I have any reason to be writing about. And unfortunately that seems to be true.

It's like the show is already gearing up for a Carly Smithson/David Archuleta finale and the rest of the contestants can slowly get eliminated one by one without a second thought. Maybe the rest of the contestants aren't really as strong as the show purports them to be, and perhaps the "best top 24 ever" is just a smokescreen to get the show to it's final intended destination.

Am I saying the show is fixed? No. But marketing is a powerful tool, and it can be hard to see around it. The viewers have the ultimate power, but Simon knows whose word matters the most. His.

Source : http://www.floweradvisor.com.sg/lifestyle/technology/television/30712/american_idol_the_best_top____ever_or_pure_marketing_hype/

See Also : Mooncake, Mid autumn festival

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