I think these choices are okay. First, Jennifer Lopez. I mean, Jenny From the Block clearly knows how to claw her way to the top, and I think that experience will lead her to give some good advice to the hopefuls. And Steven Tyler? Yes, please. I happen to love him in a way that is completely inappropriate given the fact that he looks a little like a monkey. BUT, can you think of anyone else who simply epitomizes rock star like this man? He seems to me to be a little kooky and unpredictable, and that always leads to good TV.
I have gotta admit, though, that I will miss some of the old judges. I was a little saddened when Paula left. I mean, she was the cheerleader for the contestants in a way that no one else ever could manage to be. Maybe J.Lo can take over this role? Kara, well honestly, I could care less about Kara. I never liked her. I LOVE me some Ellen, but certainly not as an AI judge. You could tell she just felt too bad to ever say anything critical.
And Simon...oh, Simon. I believe that the show will NEVER be the same without Simon. In fact, it wouldn't surprise me if his departure means the end of the show. We could always count on him to tell it like it is, without any sugar coating. Simon, you narcissistic, British bastard, you. You will be missed most of all.
And now for the format changes: me likey. The contestants get to focus on and hone their skills in THEIR genre. Enough bouncing around. We'll just call a spade a spade, every week. Carrie Underwood does not need to sing hip-hop, nor does Kelly Clarkson need to experiment with her country twang. Instead, each week the contestants will work to strengthen their own, unique craft.
Looking forward to January 2011!