Simon Cowell speaks out about the current season of 'American Idol' | EW.com

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Simon Cowell speaks out about the current season of 'American Idol'

Simoncowell_l

Simoncowell_l
EW.com had occasion today to speak with American Idol judge Simon Cowell, and we took the opportunity to ask him about the show’s current, unpredictable season. As always, Simon had strong opinions and was not afraid to share his thoughts on David Cook, “God Bless the U.S.A.,” and those “annoying” waving hands.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How do you feel the show is going this season?
SIMON COWELL:
It’s interesting. I think the audience are much more savvy than I’ve seen them in previous years, and much less forgiving, which I’m happy about. I’ve got a feeling this year something strange could happen, particularly after what happened with David Cook last night. Because, I’ve got to tell you, watching it back, this performance he did on “Billie Jean,” in my opinion, was in a different league to anything we’ve heard on the season so far. It was so much better, [chuckles] he kind of made some of the other performances seem ridiculous. But I’m glad! He was smart — I know where he got the arrangement of the song from, but that doesn’t really matter. He was brilliant! And I was concerned three or four weeks ago that this was just going to be a coronation for David Archuleta and it’s just a question of who comes [in] second. I’m not so sure anymore. And, you know, with Jason Castro last night — there’s a guy who thinks he’s just sailing along, and I thought it was a bad performance. You give somebody like him a kick up the ass, let’s see what he can deliver now. But I thought it was, um, an interesting night last night.

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To be sure. Some very odd song choices.
And very clever song choices. That “God Bless the U.S.A.” [sung by Kristy Lee Cook]  — smart girl. Gotta tell you [laughing]
when your back’s against the wall, she knew what she was doing. I
thought that was very smart. I’ll be amazed if she gets booted out on
the back of that [song].

What is it like to be surrounded by people just standing there, waving their arms and clapping not in time with the music?
It’s a little bit annoying at times, because you kind of think that it’s like they’re all hypnotized! [Laughs]
That’s probably the best way of describing it. It’s like they all wake
up after it’s finished and think What have I just been doing? I used
to like when people were sitting down to the left and right of me,
because I like to see what the audience are doing [during a
performance]. I think it’s as important to watch the audience reaction
without them being aware of being watched as it is listening to the
song yourself: You see them get excited; you see them bored. With this
lot in front of me [now], I haven’t got a clue what’s going on. So we
may have to sit them down in the future. I think it’s good idea for the
final; I’m not sure it’s a good idea for the [regular shows].
Particularly, when you’ve got someone at the piano doing a Sting song,
there’s nothing much to wave about, is there?

No. And I have to say, as a viewer, it’s quite obnoxious when the arms are often taking up, like, three quarters of the screen.
Yeah, I know what you’re saying. It’s a bit childish as well, isn’t it? Yeah, I think we may have to do something about that.

I have to tell you, that would be much appreciated at EW. Our
readers aren’t fans of it either. If you could somehow stop the waving…

[Laughs] Well, we’ll start a campaign together on that! I’ll do my best. As you know, they don’t listen to me, that audience!

To be sure. Some very odd song choices.
And very clever song choices. That “God Bless the U.S.A.” [sung by Kristy Lee Cook]  — smart girl. Gotta tell you [laughing]when your back’s against the wall, she knew what she was doing. Ithought that was very smart. I’ll be amazed if she gets booted out onthe back of that [song].

What is it like to be surrounded by people just standing there, waving their arms and clapping not in time with the music?
It’s a little bit annoying at times, because you kind of think that it’s like they’re all hypnotized! [Laughs]That’s probably the best way of describing it. It’s like they all wakeup after it’s finished and think What have I just been doing? I usedto like when people were sitting down to the left and right of me,because I like to see what the audience are doing [during aperformance]. I think it’s as important to watch the audience reactionwithout them being aware of being watched as it is listening to thesong yourself: You see them get excited; you see them bored. With thislot in front of me [now], I haven’t got a clue what’s going on. So wemay have to sit them down in the future. I think it’s good idea for thefinal; I’m not sure it’s a good idea for the [regular shows].Particularly, when you’ve got someone at the piano doing a Sting song,there’s nothing much to wave about, is there?

No. And I have to say, as a viewer, it’s quite obnoxious when the arms are often taking up, like, three quarters of the screen.
Yeah, I know what you’re saying. It’s a bit childish as well, isn’t it? Yeah, I think we may have to do something about that.

I have to tell you, that would be much appreciated at EW. Ourreaders aren’t fans of it either. If you could somehow stop the waving…
[Laughs] Well, we’ll start a campaign together on that! I’ll do my best. As you know, they don’t listen to me, that audience!