MTV's newest competitive reality show is basically the same thing as American Idol--some young singer wannabes perform every week for a panel of judges, the singer with the highest score wins immunity, America votes for their favorites of the remaining acts, the kid with the lowest score gets booted, and in the end the "best" performer gets a major label record deal.
But it's even better than American Idol, and here's why: These performers are not just some random people off the street thinking they can sing better than anyone in their town, these are the kids of famous musicians and singers.
Dee Snyder's kid is on it (with more make-up than his dad), Olivia Newton-John's puffy lipped daughter is on it (and she wants so bad to be Amy Winehouse), MC Hammer's daughter is one it (and she's not awful, actually), Al B-Sure's kid is on it... And none of them can really sing, yet they perform for a live audience, their famous parents, and four judges including Belinda Carslile and Larry Rudolf (yeah, Britney Spear's ex-manager). They get scored on a scale of 1-10; Larry is the Simon of the bunch, Belinda is the more-coherent Paula. The other two judges are people I've never heard off--one's a stylist and one's a choreographer. Or something.
It premiered last Thursday on MTV, and I've watched it in re-runs twice since. I can't not watch it when it's on. The first night's assignment was to sing a song that reminded them of their parents. When Bobby Brown's kid, Landon Brown, sang Seal's "Crazy" (fitting), he got some low scores (7.5, 5.0, 7.5, 6.5). His performance was flat, boring, the usual problems that plague amateurs. He played to the audience more than he sang the song. Rudolph said he had a problem with the song's runs and pitch, the choreographer dude said some stuff about how he has big shoes to fill and he performance is key. But the "Ouch" moment came when the show's host (a low-rent Ryan Seacrest) asked Daddy what he thought.
"I accept what they say," he said.
"You liked his performance?" asked the host.
"I love him."
You can watch the full episode at MTV.com. Do it. Please do it.