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Music Matters

Is Nicki Minaj bad for ‘American Idol’ ?

/ 10:51 PM April 01, 2013

Nicki Minaj does more than speak her mind. I don’t think there has ever been a judge like her in ‘American Idol’ since it was first launched in 2002. One would think she is a good thing or a welcome change for the show. But ratings have suggested otherwise and feedback from viewers are not in her favor either.

It would be easy to compare her to another outspoken judge like Simon Cowell. But Nicki Minaj isn’t as prudent as he was before getting into heated arguments and disagreements with fellow judges and this hasn’t translated well with the viewers at home. Here in the Philippines, people still tune in to the show but in the States, it is a different matter.

One of the first things we heard about Nicki Minaj when she debuted on the show was her ongoing feud with Mariah Carey. However, it isn’t only Mariah Carey who feels scorn for Minaj. Even some of the contestants have gotten it from Nicki. Talk about being unprofessional. The latest contestant who got into an exchange of words with Minaj was ousted ‘American Idol’ contestant Devin Velez who felt the wrath of Minaj through her Twitter rant with most of the inflammatory remarks directed at the eliminated Idol contestant. One of the reasons that ignited the Twitter rant from Minaj was because Devin Velez complained that the judges should have saved him from being axed. Devin’s reaction didn’t sit well with Minaj and she made it clear she didn’t stand for it.


It seems even in social networking sites, Minaj can stir up not only controversy but a storm of hate from long time followers of the hit Fox reality show, who they feel is arrogant, cocky, pompous, annoying and immature–and these are just some words that I can mention here. Having followed the show since the season started, I can’t help but agree with a few of the negative remarks about her because Nicki Minaj really is one of the most perplexing judges ever on that show. I honestly think the producers of ‘American Idol’ may have made a mistake in replacing Jennifer Lopez with Nicki Minaj.

It is one thing to bring in ratings through controversies that can be deemed still suitable for the show to gain more viewers. But some of Minaj’s antics are no longer justifiable in her position in the show. In my opinion, there should be a certain code of conduct which should be followed by judges in the show. By arriving late for tapings, continually getting into heated arguments with one of your co-judges, and even going on a Twitter tirade against an eliminated contestant, Nicki Minaj is not only asking for criticism from everyone but she is begging for it !

We can enumerate and give a list of some of her misbehavior she has shown lately on ‘American Idol’ that has been deemed unacceptable– from walking out when she gets into a temper tantrum, hitting on Motown legend Smokey Robinson whether it was just to flirt or be playful, and even her choice of caustic words for Idol contestant Janelle Arthur for a particular performance where she had a duet with fellow Idol contestant Kree Harrison, and other things that are too numerous to mention. All these only reveal the kind of person she truly is. A lot of viewers have even compared her to having the maturity of a high school kid–making faces; giving out uncalled for remarks to some contestants that comes off as bullying; and constantly putting herself on a higher pedestal  even before giving her opinion on a contestant’s performance.

These are things that even viewers and longtime fans of the show have noticed and they have made it clear that they are unhappy and annoyed by her presence on the show. The novelty and amusement of seeing her there is starting to wear out. Once you tick people off with your behavior, they tend to change the channel and watch maybe another reality show. That right there raises a “red flag” for the producers of ‘American Idol’.

Even with all the haters Nicki Minaj has now, there is a part of me that does appreciate what she is doing even with all the ecentric behavior she exhibits. She does tickle the curiosity of some viewers to watch what she might do next which provides an element of unpredictabilty. There are times, though, that she is way too, too much. But what can the haters do if that is who really she is? People can’t expect all the judges to act the same and to praise all the contestants without any of the hopefuls feeling the “bite” of criticism from time to time. That would defeat the purpose of having four judges in the first place. Just imagine having four Randy Jacksons?

Gone are the days when you would see the likes of a Paula Abdul who a lot of fans considered too nice and judged so generously. I think the problem is with the fans also. If a judge is too nice, they don’t like it. But if there is someone who is like Nicki Minaj in the judging panel, they don’t like it either! There is something wrong right there. Fans can’t decide what they really want in a judge and I’m not referring to all the fans but a segment only of viewers. Because it is so easy to call people names and go on a rant online when haters hide behind fictitious names. But Nicki Minaj has the guts to say what she wants to say on national television and even in front of a live audience. That takes courage! Either Nicki Minaj is really behaving the way she trruly is, or she certainly knows how to rile up people and hit a nerve with viewers. Regardless of what it really is, she creates controversies but unfortunately, it didn’t show in the ratings.

However, Nicki Minaj is still new to the show. She hasn’t even finished one whole season yet, but rumors have started to circulate that she may not even be asked to come back for the next season. Ouch! You would think that the producers had an idea of what they were getting themselves into or had thought this over very well, even before deciding to bring her in. But maybe it is because she does act like a real “diva” even as she accuses Mariah Carey of being one. That alone is sufficient enough reason for people to hate her and want her off the show! Because if she can behave that way with Mariah Carey, just imagine what the crew and backstage personnel must be getting from her.

So, while Nicki Minaj continues to become a “headliner” in the wrong way and in a manner that continues to not speak well of her, and with Season 12 halfway near the end, don’t expect her to tone down the rhetoric and her knack to spark controversy. But “believe you me,” Nicki Minaj will ride this one out to the very end of Season 12 in her own unique and colorful way!


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TAGS: column, Entertainment, Josh Atilano, Nicki Minaj
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