Avril Lavigne guest judging Idol as Neil Patrick Harris calls industry judges “a weird mistake”

Avril Lavigne is going to take some time away from being irrelevant to guest judge American Idol 9 in Los Angeles, according to EW. She’ll do one day, while previously announced guest judge Katy Perry will sit in the other day.

Meanwhile, Kristin Chenoweth sat in Paula’s chair in Orlando last week, and Neil Patrick Harris judged in Dallas, after which he told EW, “I shattered dreams.” If that’s not awesome enough, he also said that he thinks having music industry guest judges is a bad idea: “I think it has been a weird mistake to have people with their own music careers going on and judging people because when they’re too critical, it affects them. They don’t want to be that honest, because they need to keep their appearance up. If you don’t have any ties to the music industry, you just love American Idol, you can sit there and do exactly what you do in your living room, which is stare at them and judge them.”

‘American Idol’ exclusive: Avril Lavigne joins Katy Perry as guest judge in L.A. and Neil Patrick Harris on judging ‘Idol’ and bringing ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ to the Emmys [Entertainment Weekly]

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.