‘American Idol’ Alum Blake Lewis on the Show’s Return

Michael Doucett
Courtesy of Michael Doucett

Where do I begin? “American Idol” finally had its final finale last year, and now it’s coming back.

I’ve been talking to my fans about the show’s return over the last couple of days and the responses have been polarizing. Half of them are excited and the other half say, “Let it be — it made its mark.” I’m somewhere in the middle.

This show gave me an amazing opportunity to share my craft at a time when the world didn’t really know what beatboxing was, so I’m extremely grateful for that limelight. The journey had its ups and downs, but I grew in every way imaginable and the aftermath was nothing short of amazing for my career. That being said: Does America need this show back?

I personally thought that when Simon Cowell left after Season 8, the show was done. I still watched because the talent level on some of the seasons was undeniable, but then it started revolving around the judges and wasn’t so much about the talent anymore. That’s when I gave up watching and only would tune in from the top 8 or so, on. I personal didn’t care about the new judges until Harry Connick Jr. came in and gave some serious critique, even though I loved J Lo.

It’s sad to me as a fan, and as someone who’s been through the whole experience, that viewers never got to see enough of the actual behind-the-scenes process of the show. On “Idol’s” last run on Fox, they finally decided to bring contestants from the past 15 years back to the stage but it was only a half-season long. I had been saying for years that the show should bring back the people that made “Idol” a phenomenon for years.

Creatively, I think a smart move going forward at ABC would be to lift the curtain on the true “reality” of competing on “Idol.” I can’t count how many times I’ve been asked by fans: what it was like every day? How was it to sing in front of the judges? What did filming the Ford commercials entail? What went on behind the scenes as we were rehearsing and learning choreography. I think all those things should all by included more. Don’t you? Or are you excited for the month-long tryouts where they make fun of countless people auditioning? Because I’ll take a pass on that.

Not enough is known about the new “Idol” for me to wrap my head around it quite yet — who will the new judges be?? — so I’ll stop here and say: Yes, I think it should come back! I love “American Idol,” but why now? Are the people upstairs running out of all the money they made? What makes them think they can compete with the NFL on Sundays?

I have all these questions and I need answers.

Blake Lewis competed on Season 6 of “American Idol” and came in second to Jordin Sparks. Check out his music, videos and tour dates here.