Part of Idol’s live results show was taped

A segment during Wednesday’s American Idol 7 live results show was actually not live. Specifically, Katharine McPhee’s performance and the phone calls from viewers were both pre-taped.

That segment “was taped before the show started, requiring audience members to be there at 4:15 p.m. before the live part of the show started at 6 p.m.,” Billboard reports. In other words, it’d have been impossible for someone to call in and ask an embarrassing or offensive question, since that segment was not live.

The magazine looks at nine other “secrets” of an American Idol taping, including that the musicians don’t need to wear pants. “The orchestra wears sparkly blouses and proper dress shirts; their upper bodies are all that can be seen on camera. Below the line of sight they’re wearing jeans and Uggs,” Billboard says.

In addition, the judges leave their table during breaks, and “each have their own bodyguards who escort them in and out of the stage area.” They stand by the judges’ table during the show to “[make] sure no one takes a dive towards the judges.”

Ten Secrets About An American Idol Taping [Billboard]

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.