vote was the closest in Idol’s history; was it because of a power outage, racism?

vote was the closest in Idol’s history; was it because of a power outage, racism?
The shocking American Idol 3 vote that showed Jennifer Hudson the door was the closest vote in the show’s history, Reuters reports. So why was it so close and so shocking (to everyone except Jennifer)? Extra speculates “that storms in the Midwest may have played a role in the show’s outcome. More than 15,000 fans from Jennifer’s hometown of Chicago were unable to watch or vote because of a power outage. But the show’s producers say there is nothing they can do.” Meanwhile, The New York Post reports that it “was deluged with calls complaining that the voting was racially motivated since the three woman with the fewest votes were black.” E! Online summarizes some of the other (conspiracy) theories, ranging from computer hackers to prejudice against Fantasia because she’s a young single mother (her daughter was on stage Tuesday).

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.

A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.