Paula and Bruno, Danny Gokey and Lens Crafters, mansion ghosts, iTunes denial, and other American Idol stupidity

There’s been lots of random but vaguely interesting news floating around about the American Idol universe recently, like the fact that Paula Abdul has teamed with a dog food company to raise money for charity or the fact that the finalists “got free Gibson guitars,” as Matt Giraud told the Los Angeles Times. Here are a few of those stories.

Paula Abdul will apparently appear in the upcoming Sacha Baron Cohen film Bruno, based on his satirical gay Austrian fashion reporter. After Page Six said Paula was interviewed by Bruno and “bought into his character and to this day isn’t aware she was fooled,” she wrote on Twitter, “Ha ha.Joke’s on me. ‘Bruno’ tricked me. I have 2 say that Sacha is good at what he does. I’ll get him back:)”

Less than an hour ago, Reuters stumbled upon breaking news: if Adam Lambert wins, he “could become, possibly, the first gay or bisexual singer to be handed the ‘Idol’ title by millions of Americans,” its story said. That news is almost two months old, as that’s when photos and video that pretty much confirmed he’s gay surfaced–and when he said in response, “I have nothing to hide. I am who I am.”

In response to recent iTunes download rankings that were (apparently accidentally) revealed, executive producer Ken Warwick tried to deny those were real to Fox’s Los Angeles affiliate, but as MJ’s Big Blog notes, his “duck and cover” efforts fail as he used careful language such as “there are no download numbers from iTunes deliberately” and “it’s not released, and it hasn’t been released.”

The idiot who interviewed Warwick, Fox 11’s Jane Yamamoto, says “those numbers are not true,” because she clearly missed the day during j-school when they taught about skepticism and the day when they taught students how to Google. Of course, the whole segment is blatant Idol-whoring, so it’s not to be taken seriously, but it’s horrifying to think people actually watch local news and think they’re being informed by twits like this.

Speaking of specious news, the mansion housing the finalists may have a ghost named Phyllis. Anoop Desai told People, “Some people are convinced that there’s a ghost there, especially Allison. But I’ve never really seen her.” He calls Phyllis “just a friendly troublemaker. She bangs around and keeps people awake. Allison hears something in her room every night. I don’t know if someone’s just creeping around in there or what.”

Finally, for the past two weeks, Danny Gokey has ended performances by making a heart shape with his hands, which is identical to a Lens Crafters commercial, as Vote for the Worst and others have noted. Danny is known for his glasses, but he also has a charity called Sophia’s Heart that’s in memory of his wife, so it may just be a coincidence, or it may be an epic product placement conspiracy.

Paula Abdul Totally Fooled by ‘Bruno’ [New York Post]
Could Adam Lambert be first gay ‘American Idol’? [Reuters]
‘Idol’s’ Matt Giraud says he won’t be idle for long [Los Angeles Times]
Ken Warwick Disingenuously Covers His Tracks [MJ's Big Blog]
Danny Gokey: Douche or Lenscrafters Spokesperson? [Vote for the Worst]
BOO! Is the Idol House Haunted? [People]

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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.