The Karaoke Effect
Aspiring "idols" wait in line before American Idol auditions in Birmingham, Alabama. © Fox Television, 2006.
Like 37.3 million other Americans, I spent four hours of my life this week watching countless people make buffoons out of themselves on national television. The season premiere of American Idol
began, as is now its habit, by showing thousands of people lining up in cities across America, eager to belt their hearts out in search of a "golden ticket." No, this is not a reference to the Roald Dahl book about a chocolate factory
, but it might as well be, because like many of the characters in that beloved childhood classic, Idol
tells a tale of greed, improbability and illusion. Sorry: make that delusion.
Which may be precisely the point...