American Idol announced a major change to its rules last night.
So far, though, it's merely served to double the pain of Jasmine Murray and Jorge Nunez.
Early in the hour, Ryan Seacrest said the competition would enact the "judges' save" this season. Under this rule, Kara, Simon, Paula and Randy have an opportunity to keep a contestant around, even if he/should received the lowest number of viewer votes that week. The rules for the save are:
- The judges must agree unanimously on the singer;
- It may only be used once all season;
- And it must be used prior to the final five.
While this twist gave Murray and Nunez - the two singers on last night's chopping block - a chance to audition again for the panel, it also gave them the chance to be voted out... again.
Which is exactly what happened. Both Jasmine and Jorge performed the same songs as they had the evening before, only for the judges to confirm that, yes, it was time to go home.
Did the viewers, and judges, make the right decision last night?
Seacrest pointed to the early eliminations of past crooners, such as Chris Daughtry and Jennifer Hudson, as the motivation for the rule change. It sort of makes sense, except: Daughtry and Hudson are two of the most successful artists in show history.
Perhaps an early, surprise elimination actually helps a contestant, as it enables he or she to receive sympathy, attention and an early shot at a record contract. What do you think?