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The Conspiracy Theories

Couch Tomato

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Hi fellow paranoids,


I always believed that Reuben was chosen way before hand to be the Idol. And I noticed that a lot of show biz people said a mantra taught to them, "We don't want anyone who doesn't look like an American Idol." My friends thought Clay would win, but he didn't. Psychic, maybe?????

Why was Reuben's contract with big shirt company never revealed? I read that in one of the books on American Idol.

Why is Clay always called on to defend American Idol, eg. Corey Clark, instead of Reuben?????

Why wasn't Clay popular with girls before AI2? He had the same voice, charm, and sense of humor before. In LTS, they have a quote from Nick that said he didn't understand why women liked Clay now?? Clay has had a lot of friends that are girls, but no mention of a girlfriend. HS prom date was one of these friends that are girls.

Why is Clay so adorable that I get weak in the knees when I see his picture? :rolleyes:

Enquiring minds want to know. Oh, I'm sorry, slap myself.

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Hmmm I was all about conspiracies...but in the last three years my theories have changed somewhat. Specially after I started to rewatch the episodes.

I think AI tries to have a theme for every year. I think for season two it was going to be about contrast...Image vs talent, good girl/boys vs bad girls/boys...I think thats why they highlighted the fight between Kim and Julia and highlighted Josh and Corey and even placed them in the same semi final groups. The talent vs image came about when they were getting Clay, Ruben, Kim and Frenchie...they were people with definite image problems with huge talents. Now they needed to get people that would contrast that...that is why in the wildcard they brought in 3 very pretty girls with weak talent they were simply filling in their players.

I think they really wanted Ruben since hollywood. I think they wanted Clay too...I think they wanted to promote that contrast between the two. But they didn;t foresee Kim's little exchange with Simon in group 2. That was why she got in instead of Clay she was very memorable. I think Clay would've been in the top 12 for sure...if he wasn't the viewers choice I bet he would be Simon's.

I think the fact that Clay got a huge boost in the wildcard...they figure he didn;t need the anchor position for the motown show. They gave that to Ruben. They needed to remind people about him. But if you would notice, Clay was very prominent in every film clip they did.... So I think they were equal pimpee that night.

I do think they were a bit worried that Clay would dominate the competition. They know that the show would be better if there is a close rivalry. I think the rumor that Clay got like more than 75% of the WC vote was true. What is significant is that even in the Motown show, which is their first one with an audience...Clay already got the loudest reaction from the audience. Simon needed to counter that by giving him a lot of critique...while continually boosting Ruben to the public.

I actually suspect that they were pimping RUben not so that he could beat Clay but so that he could beat Josh. I believe Josh probably got a lot of support from people because of the military connection and the country style and they didn't see a Josh Clay final as compelling as a Ruben and Clay.

I personally believe, Clay was going to get a contract from RCA regardless...I bet they were all shocked when the congested phone lines resulted in a statistical tie giving Ruben a slight edge.

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Now that I am watching the beginning of season 2 again, I will definitely agree with you Ansa about the push for Josh. Because my memories of his sucky performances later in the season are more vivid, I had forgotten how much Josh's Marine background was played up. I think that points up a problem with the producers too obviously putting all their eggs in one particular basket, so to speak. You never know when a performer who starts out well will collapse along the way.

Also, while I am positive the producers manipulate the hell out of the show's content and editing, I have never believed they mess with the voting results. Never underestimate the power of incompetence and human error. <_< YMMV, of course.

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KAndre looks around with shifty eyes...

You know, there were monkeys missing from every tour stop on the JBT? Just sayin'....

There, that takes care of my sanest theory, now for the craziest...

I think the TPTB were flying by the seat of their pants for the first three seasons and everything up until that point was experimental...

Season 1 came out of nowhere - lightning hit, they ended up with a fair to middlin' winner (this commentary is just based on Thankful). And honestly, I don't think they had a clue as to what made it successful the first year, except real talent seemed to be a necessity and they thought their target audience was similiar to that of the Real World which is why they were pushing the Kelly+Guarini stuff.

Season 2 - real talent came out of the woodwork. They picked some current culture archetypes (big black soul singer, poor innocent "lamb", "punk" girl, fat black girl with attitude, skinny black diva girl, patriot dude, hollywood starlet type (KimMe), ghetto boy band type, transformation boy, two sweet guys, I'm not sure what Julia was supposed to be besides filler), stick 'em in a house and hopefully naughty hijinks will occur. Unhappily for them, the least cooperative as to naughty hijinks has the most talent. But they lucked up again, with a set of strong, compelling protagonist and antagonist and really interesting and strong secondary characters and very distinctive and strong fanbases. It was serendipity.

Season3 - they start playing with people minds.

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I really agree Kandre...that is why they had all these different characters. They wanted to experiment with contrasts and that was how they casted it. Not knowing what combination would work, hoping for some fireworks. I think Julia was there to continue the drama with Kim. Remember the original plan was to have a Big brother type show with kristin holt living in the mansion. As I said I think the only thing they tried to conrol is Clay running away with the competition. They needed to keep Ruben in the running that is why they created the RUUUUUUben cheers and really gave him lots of props outside the competition. I really think the judges simply loved Ruben's performance style and thats why they never seem to find anything wrong with him. He was really pretty professional in his approach from the very beginning. I saw the manipulation of the audience in how Paula covered the story for ET...how the did the performance reviews and I think the way the used celebrity endrosements to boost up Ruben's popularity.

Season 3...they did try to manipulate the outcome. They did this by choosing less talented people that would make their chosen ones stand out more. that is why that was the most horrendous season ever.

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Ah, my favorite topic, how sad to that I find it as my dog wants to play fetch with an ear off a stuffed toy. I can barely see the dumb thing and I have to tug it and throw it. Sheesh the things we do for the things we love.

OK switched her to a rope, this I can see.

Recruiting - I think there have always been some salting of the talent in this show - some people who were brought in to audition. I.e. professional ringers - this may not be a popular thought, but I know a lot of reality programs cast and don't get all their people from applications. I think AI went as far to request some people to audition without standing on line. I think the people are sworn not to speak of it. (PS, The only person I think they could have recruited from Belly's was Corey <-Big brother, TAR and Surevivor joke here, but mostly Big Brother)

Season one - they had pop idol and they looked for attractive young people - no fat people, no really ugly people. They were looking a the Will young factor, except that Simon did not want GAY. Kelly won and they found taht she could sing on key. They were trying to package the whole AI thing, so they thought a romance was just the ticket, hence the movie, etc. I think they wanted Tamyra, but went with Kelly when she won. I don't think that the counting ofthe votes is off, but the way they are called in is still a question.

When they started season 2, they still thought they had winners with a number of people signed to contract, but without CDs out yet. I think they were ready to do pretty, young and healthy again. I think they were a little surprised at the people who came out this time. Since Kelly, Justin and Tamyra had appeared on TV,etc people accepted that they could become famous because ofthis show and more talented people came out. I think they knew from day one that manted a male, which male is up for question. I think they were surprised at the talent and decided to stretch what they believed in to accept some less than beautiful people apply.

I think they did like Ruben from the moment they saw him - I have seen clips of him where he comes alive and is very funny,. so I think that is where the personality comments come from, unfortunately it did not come across on AI possibly because he may have trouble with scripted remarks. I think they liked a lot of people when they saw them and they tried for a variety for Hollywood. I think in Hollywood they decided what characters these guys would be cast in - the bad girls and boys and the innocents and the very talented. Julia got by on her auditions, I think her problem was the cameras, she just could not seem comfortable in front of them and the audience at the same time, perhaps she was made overly concious of it, but I do not believe she would fall into to the class of semi-pro like Ruben. I think Ruben had a little trouble with camera work and not with audiences, but improved a bit each time, just not a lot. think that they wanted a boy and girl from every group and they stacked the groups to get the ones they wanted. Clay was supposed to be a very close third and I think that convinced them to bring him back, but if Frenchie had stayed in teh competition, Kim L would have been out - you only need one overweight woman in the competition. I thin t the people who were showed singing at the end were probably the chosen ones, the first singers were dismissable. Some of the chosen performed dismally and were lost, others just were not the choice of the people. I think that Nigel liked Clay more than the judges initially, I never thought Clay was ugly, so I don't understand why people thought he would be bad based on his audition, of course, I don't remember if I watched the auditions initally, so.. whatever. Kim L was told to insult Simon before the show, it could have backfired because it seemed a lot of people watching were turned off because of that.

Edited by playbiller
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To continue.... I think as the Hollywood rounds progress, they finalized what they wanted on thier TV show. Keeping in mind that they did not know how successful AI would be, it was a moderate success as a summer show and they rushed into the next season. They thought Simon was the star. Anyway they cast the show with talent and image-I would have to reqwatch the show to see who I thought ws picked and who ended up getting voted in, but I know one person who was not supposed to be voted in was Charles. He made a strong surprising show in his group - I think it was to be JD Adams instead. The female was to be Julia or Kim C. In group 2 it was Kim L and Ruben, In Group 3, I am not sure, but they must have liked Vanessa and Rickey, but others could have been the chosen and just did not appeal to people. Group 4 - should have been Josh or Corey and probably should have been Frenchie, but the other woman, not so exciting - this is where I think their plan startedto go astray. So that would leave 2 topick for wildcard. I wonder when they increased it to 12, when the ratings started coming in?

As far as choosing someone, I think they had people that they liked and were a mix of personalities in the beginning and that made them happy. As the show progressed, I think they tried to encourage a balance of male and female, by strategic criticism.

Favorites - I think they liked Clay more after the group 2 voting, supposedly it was very close and Clay received more votes in 3rd than any different group singers (1,3 or 4). I think they liked Ruben from the beginning and encourage him more as time went along. I think after a really bad performance they could not support certain people. Josh and Celebrate - was comically bad - there is no way they could praise him, no way at all. I think they had initally picked people they wanted to go far, but I don't know that they had a particular scenario besides offering choices. SOmewhere after the mail started coming in, I think that Clay became a favorite - but too much to get constant praise, do you think he could really be shown as runing away with it? I think KimL started off really weak and she was lucky that Vanessa got the snotty remark that week and got voted off, because it could have been her. I think Ruben became a farovite pretty quickly after he started getting a lot of votes, the fact that he weakend towards the end was not something they counted on, but they really worked that year like dogs and no year since then has had to learn as much or perform as much. I would say that they initially liked Trenyce, but after her scandal and the fact that she did not get along with some people made them want her gone and caused the Simon viciousness towards her.

I think the people they would push was set by the time the top 8 or 9 was done. as time went on, it was more and more in cement.

I fell by the time they were near the end, Clay was being made to look more like the underdog, perhaps they wanted it to look like a come from behind win, but I really decided taht they wanted Clay to win at the end. After Ruben won, I do believe the show had to discredit Clay some to validate the show. I have decided that there were ways to makethe voting fair, very simply. Jut have everyone call the same number and have them use a touch tone number for the person they want, but they wanted a close vote,hence the push for Ruben at the end with ET (3 nights of Ruben, no nights of Clay). I think at the end, they thought Clay would win and that is why he had a confetti song and Ruben had the wings song. I also believe they were both going to be given contracts no matter who won. If Kim had made it to the final 2, they may still have skipped her. Of course they may have given out 3 contracts, they still did not learn from season 1 yet, as only Kelly had her album out.

About the shirts and Ruben. I don't know if the show knew about the shirts and the payments until the law suit, I think Ruben just decided to stop wearing them under pressure from the show to tweak his image. I think when Ruben started he never expected to make it as far as he did and he took the money to pay the bills while he was on the show, figuring no one would ever know. I think TPTB were probably quite angry when they found out, it was money that they shouldhave been paid and you know how those people like to squeeze a dime. I do not think they did anything except yell at Ruben and try to settle the lawsuit quietly.

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Finally -

Season 3 - I think both Diana and Fantasia were recruited because their audition stories don't sit well with me, I think they were given advance invitations to fianl auditiuons, but no guarentees to Hollywood. There may have been other invitees, but I am not sure.

Seasoin 4 - I think they wanted a guy and I think that Bo and/or Constatine may have been recruited because their audition stories are strange as well, but I don't know. Others may have been as well. I think some people get invitations to try out and still don't make the cut.

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No realt argument with your theories playbiller.

When I watch the judges in season 2 they seem so different from how they are in the next seasons. I feel that they were more honest...reacting from the gut. Not Simon though. I think he always had an agenda. But after season 2...they became talking heads.

I don;t even hold it against the judges for being so happy about Ruben's win. I think Randy relates more to Ruben and was hoping he would win. I think the same thing for Paula. I ahve a feeling they knew that Clay would still get a contract anyway.

I think the most sickening season with regards to manipulation was season 3...not just with what the judges said...but the people they let through....they threw away a lot of talented people then.

I wonder what this season will be like. Already there is more fluff...and realisty show aspect than a legitimate talent show.

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In Season 3 they attempted to find the next pop princess a la Hillary Duff but they fell by the wayside faster than you can say stagefright. They were all gorgeous girls but they couldn't 1. stay on key and 2. overcome their nerves. Even the ones who did just weren't all that special. They misjudged. So they went to plan B which was the divas. And then they got desperate with people like Red head John refusing to go away. The desperation was palpable because by the time it got to final five there was hardly any talent at all..not that there was much in the final 12...it's not like good people left before their time. So they worked overtime to make sure Fantasia won. It wasn't that hard because everybody else sucked. Latoya could sing but was one of the most boring finalists ever. I think if Diana or Jasmine had won American Idol, it would have turned into a joke.

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In Season 3 they attempted to find the next pop princess a la Hillary Duff but they fell by the wayside faster than you can say stagefright.  They were all gorgeous girls but they couldn't 1. stay on key and 2. overcome their nerves.  Even the ones who did just weren't all that special.  They misjudged.  So they went to plan B which was the divas.  And then they got desperate with people like Red head John refusing to go away.  The desperation was palpable because by the time it got to final five there was hardly any talent at all..not that there was much in the final 12...it's not like good people left before their time.  So they worked overtime to make sure Fantasia won.  It wasn't that hard because everybody else sucked.  Latoya could sing but was one of the most boring finalists ever.  I think if Diana or Jasmine had won American Idol, it would have turned into a joke.

Definitely...I think they lucked out that Fantasia was the real deal but the problem was...she was not mainstream. Her style and looks were not pop. But she was the only person who had any real IT in that group. I think Diana was like those frutis that were forced to ripen too early...they are never as good and you get sick of them right away. Same with Jasmine. She was talented but she was not ready. I don;t think she is special enough to really make it in a bigger market like North America. The rest was just forgettable.

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I think I disagree, not exactly sure how this fits in, but... I think they stacked the deck with women when auditioning and there were rumors of guy being told to audition again next year, although that could be a standard statement to those who do not make it. John Stevens was never meant to make it as far as he did, he was in purely for the "isn't he just adorable little kid singng old folks songs" factor. As far as the chosen, I think that TPTB would be happy with eiter a diva or princess, because neither were Kelly and both were female. I am sort of comint to the conclusion that they set up a few alternate choices. The thing that they never seem to count on is the fact that some people are similar and cancel votes out. I do believe that Fantasia and Diana received special treatment in auditioning. Fantasia because she did not stand in line/security guard gets herthe audition and Diana because she flew to Hawaii to audition rather than do it in the mainland and we never heard her standing on line story AND do you really believe her mother would have let her stand on line? The problem with season 3 is that they made it so female heavy, the guys did not stand a chance and the contestants became all female much too soon and there was just not much variety, after Amy was voted off there were only divas or princess to choose from.

Season 4, they adjusted that and made sure that they would have an equal number of guys and girls by a new elimination process, but they telegrraphedthe winner way too soon and allowed him to create his own career - or did he?

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I think the reason why they becamse so imbalanced in season 3 is because they were trying to make sure they get a female idol this time. This is what I mean by them throwing away a lot of good talent. Even in the WC...asking certain peopel not to even sing...was just stupid while letting people like bicboi on. They needed to get guys that will fill in thier guy quotas but not really be a threat to their chosen ones.

I think for season 4 there was no need to be careful anymore. They Ruben was two seasons behind so they can have another male idol...and for the girls...well fantasia was in another category so again...lots of opening there...so they can have a balacned show again.

This year, since Carrie is country...again their choices could be anything.

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I don't think it is wide open, I think they need another guy this time, they have 3 females and one guy and they don't talk about him very much. So I am betting it will be very unbalanced this year with better males.

IfI am correct, I also predict falling ratings when the top 12 are picked.

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Did Idol leak Trenyce's mug shot? What about Corey clark. Why was Ruben pimped? Or was he? Put your craziest or perhaps sanest theories here.

I think they did leak Trenyce's mug shot. it hurt her in the competition a lot. The show knows all those things going in about all the contestants. Many former contestants have said the show really investigates their backgroud. You will notice when things start to "leak" about contestants it's usually placed well for the show to increase ratings. Also TMZ seems to get all this stories about idols and it is (TMZ) one of the only tabloid type link allowed on AI.com

have no words for Corey Clark

Ruben I love him but he was pimped big time! thought Clay didn't win because the show thought he was gay in 2003 and still think it now (there is even a movie about it). But have always felt coming in second was the best thing that ever happened to Clay anyway so pooh on them

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