Idol 5 contestants “have more attitude”; Kelly Clarkson won’t let her songs be used

American Idol executive producer Nigel Lythgoe talked to the press yesterday, and said that, the contestants “have more attitude this season.” Specifically, some contestants quit on-stage, and others are “willing to shit on other people.” (He means that metaphorically, of course, lest FOX get all scatological on us for the fifth season; hysterically, the LA Times’ account changes the s-word to “dump” in brackets.)

During the call, Lythgoe said that first-season winner Kelly Clarkson, who has detached herself from the series entirely, “isn’t clearing some of her music for American Idol.” He called this “very strange.”

He also took credit for the “exceptionally mean” way the show tells contestants they’re safe or not safe. “It’s one of the meanest things we did, and I put my hand up. I’m to blame for it. … It would be very boring if we just say you’re in, you’re in,” he said. “I’m not making anybody eat bugs or stand on their head in the middle of the jungle. It’s only mean in a good-hearted way.”

Oh yes, that good-hearted, crush-someone’s-dreams way, you heartless ratings-whoring bastard.

No more nice ‘Idol’ [LA Times]
American Idol 5 To Have More Attitude [Reality TV Magazine]
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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, 37, 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.