Ellen DeGeneres made an earnest debut as a judge on American Idol Tuesday night. The light-footed day-time talk
show host won over some critics for her humor and passion. Could she
carry the show after Simon Cowell
leaves? Here's how critics weighed her debut:
- Bravo! writes Jim Cantiello
at MTV: "I can now say that Ellen DeGeneres is exactly what's been
missing from the judge's table since the fourth season: Passion.
Unlike Randy (who doesn't bother to stretch his vocabulary beyond
the word "interesting"), Kara (who doesn't even have the brain power to
recall Kris Allen's name when appropriate) or Simon (who checked out
right around the time Ace Young showed his scar), Ellen treated her new
gig as a job worth taking seriously."
- So-So writes
Jennifer D'Angelo Friedman at Fox News: "The comedienne did make us laugh a couple of times, like when she
teased the nervous contestants by asking them to step forward, then
step back, then step to the side, then finally told them they'd all
made it through. She also gave a great sound bite when she told a
barefoot contestant to 'put some shoes on ... it's filthy here. Hollywood
is a disgusting town.'"
- A Yawn Fest, writes Jim Farber
at The New York Daily News: "While Ellen's quips last night could
hardly be considered laugh-out-loud funny - at times she was downright
- An Earnest Effort, writes Michael Slezak at Entertainment Weekly: "The comedian/talk-show host seemed to take a deliberate back seat to
the contestants. Eyes forward, focusing on the performances. Expression
serious, reviewing her notes. Demeanor firm, sending contestants home
with constructive advice that could serve them well if they return for
season 10. And never once stirring up contrived drama/chumminess/
hijinks with Simon, Kara, and Randy in an effort to make sure all
cameras were on her."
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