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American Idol

FOX 'American Idol' finalists party

Mariah Carey, Ryan Seacrest, Keith Urban and Randy Jackson headed over to The Grove last night to celebrate American Idol's finalists. 

Among those in attendance: Candice Glover, Burnell Taylor, Curtis Finch Jr., Amber Holcomb, Janelle Arthur, Angie Miller, Paul Jolley and more!  Absent from the festivities: Nicki Minaj.

In other Idol news, despite often being the top-watched show of the night, the ratings continue to decline each week.  According to Deadline Hollywood, the show took another dip on Wednesday night.  They shared, "that’s the fourth week in a row for the show to hit such a low and the worst Wednesday performances since Idol’s first season in summer 2002. Also down in total viewership with 12.7 million from last week’s 13.1 million." 

While 12 million viewers is nothing to sneeze at, the consistent decline shows that more and more people are jumping ship each week. 

TELL US – ARE YOU STILL WATCHING AMERICAN IDOL? DO YOU THINK ANYTHING CAN SAVE IT FROM SINKING?

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ducks

My faith in humanity has been totally restored.  Not only did the powers that be here at Reality Tea have me start recapping Duck Dynasty (score!), but apparently the rest of the world is finally catching on to reality's best kept secret.  The world loves the Robertsons, and that makes me love the world.

As if my love of Si, Willie, Jase, Phil, and their families isn't enough to keep me warm at night, now I am so excited to report that viewers everywhere are following suit.  Last night's ratings for Duck Dynasty were through the roof, and A&E can just sit back and pat itself on the back for a job well done.  The Duck Commander crew has arrived, and I hope they aren't going anywhere.

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Kelly Clarkson

While American Idol might be struggling to maintain its desired ratings, Idol's past contestants certainly aren't struggling to maintain their cash money. 

Forbes recently released its list of top American Idol earners from 2012. 

Kelly Clarkson tops the list – moving up from fifth place in 2011 – with $8 million in earnings. Kelly can thank her "gold" album Stronger, appearances on The Voice, Toyota commercial, and successful tour for her success. 

Kelly stole the number one spot away from Carrie Underwood. This year, Carrie shares the number two spot with Chris Daughtry's band Daughtry – with $5 million in earnings. Forbes reports that Carrie and Chris each earn six figures for one single concert. It must be nice to be an American Idol!

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american-idol

Even with dismal ratings, American Idol (please go gently into that good-night…) still remains in the news.  This time, the long-running reality show is facing a potential lawsuit brought by nine former contestants who are claiming that the show and its producers are giant racists.  So, there's that.

I'm going to go out on a limb right now and say that I don't think the show or its practices exude any type of racism.  If I'm wrong Jennifer Hudson is having the best last laugh ever.  Factoring in the voters, the fans, and the singers, it would take a lot to skew the show in the direction of racism.  To me it sounds like a bunch of sour yet talented former contestants who didn't find the fame they'd hoped when getting the boot prior to the finale.  Just fade into obscurity like the rest of them…heck, Taylor Hicks won his season, and who even knows what he's up to these days!  (Apparently, he's headlining his own show in Vegas, but more on that after the jump :) I know, right?)

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american-idol-ratings-slip-mariah-carey-nicki-minaj

American Idol's newest judging panel, Mariah Carey, Nicki MinajKeith Urban, and Randy Jackson, debuted last week to 17.9 million viewers.

Impressive numbers, for sure, but also a 19% drop compared to season 11. 

American Idol's ratings fell another 10% Wednesday night – with a total of 16 million viewers - despite Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj's feud being aired. If the footage of their showdown was leaked on purpose back in October (to create buzz) it certainly didn't pay off. 

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american-idol-season-12-ratings

Season 12 of American Idol, featuring new judges Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, and Keith Urban, premiered Wednesday night. While the new judges, namely Mariah and Nicki, gave us bloggers a lot to blog about over the past few months, they failed to increase ratings for the show. 

An average of 17.9 million total viewers tuned in to the premiere. That's down 19% compared with last season and a new low for the reality show. The decline among viewers age 18 to 49 – the most sought-after group – was also 19%. In fact, American Idol's ratings have been going down, down, down since 2009. 

Mike Darnell, the president of Fox's alternative programming, remains optimistic about American Idol's future. "We beat everybody last night, and we're way ahead of The Voice [season three debuted to 12.3 million viewers]. It’s by far the biggest reality show, [and] I feel like there's a real shot at closing that deficit over the next few weeks.” 

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american-idol-judges-mariah-carey-keith-urban-nicki-minaj-randy-jackson-host-ryan-seacrest

It's hard to believe that American Idol has been on the air for over 10 years. Around season eight, the American Idol judges started to change, which, in my opinion, changed the focus of the show. Sadly. It became more about the judges and less about the contestants. 

Clay Aiken, the season two runner-up, recently shared his thoughts on the American Idol judges. When asked if he will return to the show to celebrate the 10th anniversary of his appearance on the show that gave him his big break, Clay said, "I don't know that I would commemorate it on the show. I don't know that they did it with Justin Guarini and all those folks." 

Clay added, "But Idol back in those days was about the contestants. Kelly [Clarkson] and Justin and Tamyra [Gray] and Nikki McKibbin, they were all the stars of the show. And when I was on, Ruben [Studdard] and myself and Kimberley Locke were the stars of the show." 

Definitely not shy about his opinion, Clay concluded, "Now Idol is about the judges. I don't even know if they remember there are contestants anymore."'

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Lo and behold, it's already Hollywood Week (my favorite!) in American Idol time!

Considering the exhaustingly long search for judges and the drama that ensued once they were finally chosen, I'm shocked we didn't hear more about the American Idol auditions. I'm not complaining – just saying! Now that Ryan Seacrest and the American Idol judges aren't on the road, they're dishing about the mood at the judges' table thus far.

Despite the big egos personalities, Ryan manages to describe the American Idol judges with one word: Randy Jackson - huggable, Mariah Carey - soothing, Nicki MInaj - pizzazz, and Keith Urban - whiskery. What does "whiskery" mean? Eh, who cares, Keith is delicious.

According to Randy, we can look forward to lot of "funny" this season. He says, "Nicki is mad funny, and Mariah is mad funny, and Keith is very quick-witted and funny." Randy adds that he wants to be Simon Cowell when he grows up, "We're all kind of silly, but I guess maybe I'm the harsh one. I'm the quickest to say no."

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