Tonight is the finale of American Idol.
A handful of years ago, the finale was must-see TV. Millions of viewers would tune in to see who America crowned as the next music sensation and the show delivered show stopping performances. The show also produced superstars such as Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson. Now the stars do not shine as bright and the ratings are down.
Has Idol lost its way … or is the audience just moving on? The winners are not superstars. From David Cook to Kris Allen, the singers do not have name recognition and would be hard pressed to sell out a local ballroom in my hometown.
So what went wrong? Here are a few of my theories.
1. The judges are stealing the show. For years, the focus was on the singing and the performances. Now, the media focuses on feuds among the judges and who is the next big judge. The judges are paid millions and use Idol as a platform to give their careers a boost. It should be called “American Judges.”
2. We are saturated with Idols. The show has been on 12 years. There are so many Idol winners, runner ups and also-rans that we are bored.
3. We miss Simon. Come on, we all have to agree that Simon told the truth but in a classy way with a beautiful accent. He, in many ways, was the voice of America.
4. The talent well is dry. I threw this one in because after last season this seemed to be an issue, however, this year’s talent was overwhelming.
5. Lastly, it has jumped the shark. If you don’t know this term, it comes from an episode of Happy Days where Fonzie actually jumped over a shark while on water skis. It is used when a TV show has reached its peak and is still on the air. In my, opinion the audience can seen how difficult it is to become a singing sensation and Idol is just the beginning of a journey. Mostly likely, we will not hear from the winner in years. It’s boot camp for singers and not a launching pad for Grammy greatness.
Well those are my opinions. Let’s hear yours!
Will Idol make a comeback or have we seen its glory days?
I have to confess … I’ve never been a huge fan of Angelina Jolie. Her films are interesting but her life seems to be an incredibly hectic journey where she must be everything to everybody. She is involved in several charitable issues, has numerous children and is engaged to a movie star. Sometimes I would like to see another side of her where she is much more laid back.
Today, Jolie made news by announcing she had a double mastectomy based on carrying the BRCA1 gene that causes breast and ovarian cancer. By having the mastectomy, she decreased her chances of having breast cancer from 85 percent to 5 percent.
That shocked me. Two thoughts ran through my head. First, I was proud that a woman was taking control and making her own choice about her body and future. Jolie wanted to be there for her children and by having the mastectomy; she increased those chances. My second thought was sadness.
Every day we see fundraisers for every type of cancer. Breast cancer awareness is everywhere. I wonder about the time, money and research going in to curing cancer. Is taking off our breasts the best answer?
Where are we in finding a cure? What does a cure look like?
So many women have chosen to have life changing surgeries speculating about forthcoming cancers. I understand their battle but is it a scapegoat to avoid finding a cure? Frankly, I don’t see men choosing to have surgeries to avoid testicular cancers.
I’m proud that Jolie had the courage to make her choice and had family to support her, but I don’t want the headlining grabbing actress to discourage the value of early detection.
Every woman must make their choice but let’s keep working on a cure.
Yesterday was a sweaty and stressful day but it was not as hard as it used to be. I woke up early to the sound of my door bell ringing. I was confused until I realized it was moving day for my mother.
The reason for this move is simple and life changing. About a year ago I met my true love, David. After date for 4 months, we were engaged and we are going to be married in September.
For the past 5 years I lived in a townhouse with my older sister and mother. It was a convenient and cost-effective situation that I knew would change eventually. Yesterday, it finally did.
My sister moved last winter and my mother made the move yesterday.
Surprisingly, it was not a difficult move.
Here are my top 5 tips for moving efficiently:
1. Be sure to pack everything and do it early. If you do this the movers just have to pick up the boxes and move the furniture.
2. Stay out of the way of the movers. Let them do them do their jobs. This includes moving and organizing the furniture.
3. You don’t need to unpack immediately. You can do this over the course of a week or two.
4. Be sure to pack an overnight bag. That first night can be hard and you will not be able to find anything. The bag ensures that you have everything you need within an arm’s reach.
5. Get pizza! Call the pizza delivery guy at the end of the day and rest!
I’m back from the Romantic Times Convention.
It was in Kansas City at the Crown Center. It is very entertaining.
I’m a huge romance fan and was very overwhelmed by seeing all the readers and writers as well as cover models!
I did a workshop about PR and authors. It was a lot of fun. If any of my attendees are reading this, feel free to write to me and get a 10 percent discount on products. Just mention to me what was the most important lesson you learned in my workshop.
Here is a photo of me with my favorite author cover.
Love Lora Leigh!!
I’m off to the Romantic Times convention tomorrow. It should be great fun and I’ll meet some of my favorite authors. I’ll post pictures.
I’m speaking Wednesday afternoon about common mistakes authors make when dealing with the media.
I am making products available on my web site starting in June. For anyone who attended the convention, there is a 10 percent discount.
Email me and we will chat: firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s that time of year again. On Tuesday, People Magazine released their Most Beautiful Woman issue. The choice for most beautiful is Gwyenth Paltrow. Paltrow is an Oscar winner, wife and mother. She has been open about her struggle with weight, her famous marriage, as well as her journey to motherhood. She just released her second cook book. Paltrow also just turned 40. Congrats!
However, this news was met with high criticism. Even my mother did not agree. She said, “How horrible. She is so plain Jane!” Now, I do think she is very pretty but I think our idea of what is pretty has changed over the years. The days of glamour queens like Ava Gardner and Elizabeth Taylor are over. So I decided to list some women in Hollywood who I consider beautiful. Tell me some of your choices.
Here is my list of Hollywood’s most beautiful:
1. Debbie Reynolds-stunning in her later seventies.
2. Jennifer Lopez-she is exotic and a true beauty.
3. Jane Fonda-she is confident and it shows.
4. Halle Berry-gorgeous!
5. Charlize Theron
6. Reese Witherspoon
7. Julia Roberts
8. Blythe Danner
9. Sandra Bullock
10. Mila Kunis
Friday night Reese Witherspoon committed the ultimate celebrity crime: She used the phrase, “Don’t You Know Who I Am?”
When I read the news of Witherspoon’s arrest on Sunday night, I was shocked. Reese Witherspoon is the Doris Day of Hollywood. Her reputation has been solid since she appeared in her first movie, “A Man in the Moon.”
She won an Oscar for “Walk the Line” and has three kids who are adjusted. They live a quiet life and seem to operate as a traditional family.
Being arrested for disorderly conduct is a 180-degree departure from her reputation.
However, this is a study in PR. Her reputation has been damaged but she can revive her career.
Below are my suggestions for Witherspoon’s recovery.
The Good Girl image is gone. It will not come back because journalists will continue to bring this up until she addresses the arrest.
I suggest she embrace it.
1. Tell your story. What happened? Was she confused about their alcohol level? Why didn’t she call a taxi? Educated others about her mistakes.
2. This makes her edgier. Take advantage of this to get more radical roles. Become a superhero. Make dramas. Embrace the change.
3. Admit to the “Don’t You Know who I Am” remark. How does fame change a person and how can someone deal with it.
In the end, she is just a person and we all make mistakes. However, this is something that will not go away and Reese needs to address these issues.
I’m excited to be blogging and talking about all things pop culture.
I realized my comment section was turned off. It’s now on, so feel free to comment.
Now on to the fun stuff!
For months I have been confused about something that everyone seems to understand.
Why do we care about celebrity pregnancies?
Every day there is a new celebrity baby bump alert. This month it has been Halle Berry, Fergie, and Kim Kardashian.
My opinion is simple. It’s a pregnancy! Women get pregnant every day. It don’t understand why when a celebrity gets pregnant, it’s news.
In the past, Hollywood tried to hide it. Movie stars were not supposed to let the public know they were human. Studios did everything possible to avoid it. They placed props in front of the stomach and hid it under layers of clothing.
Now celebrities make the bump more prominent.
I don’t have an issue with that but a pregnancy should make news for one day and then be done with it.
Why do you think we are fascinated?
Next, why do we care about celebrity babies?
This is an issue that makes me very angry. Once celebrities have their babies, they profit based on selling images of the child to gossip magazines like People and US Weekly. The purpose is supposed to be a tactic to deflect the media. However, in my opinion, celebrity babies like Shiloh Pitt-Jolie, Brooklyn Beckham, and Suri Cruise become instantly famous when on covers of these magazines. Magazines like Us Weekly even have sections for “Who Wore it Best” for celebrity babies.
Although celebrities wish to shield their children from paparazzi, they seem to want their children to be encouraging them to become famous by developing fashion lines, photo layouts and musical careers.
There are some celebrities who keep their children out of the public eye. For example, Christian Bale never released the name of his daughter to the public.
I’m not saying nepotism is not valid. Children of celebrities have talent: Mia Farrow, Drew Barrymore, and Jamie Lee Curtis are positive examples of nepotism. However, each earned their fame without their parents’ involvement.
Let’s put down the stories about celebrity nonsense and consider what is important in our everyday lives.
Give me your Pop Op!
My thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing.
I’ll be posting a new blog on Thursday.
Sara’s Pop Op
According to Wikipedia, popular culture is the entirety of ideas, perspectives, attitudes, memes, images, and other phenomena that are within the mainstream of a given culture, especially Western culture of the early to mid 20th century and the emerging global mainstream of the late 20th and early 21st century.
In short, pop culture is the study of popular ideas and culture. It may be influenced by media, opinion, and even family and friends. Our pop culture is constantly changing. We swing from being bobbysoxers screaming at Sinatra because of a harmonious singing voice to being obsessed with the Kardashians for no reason.
Today I’m introducing “Sara’s Pop Op.” My name is Sara Lien and I am the owner of Lien Public Relations.
I work with the media to tell stories. I have a history in journalism and law. However, since childhood I have loved film, books, celebrity, and media in general. I confess. I wake up in the morning, grab my iPhone and check TMZ and USA Today. I enjoy stories about Halle Berry’s pregnancy and the latest movie reviews.
With my new blog I want to not just report these stories, but discuss these stories. I am a journalist at heart and love to talk about people. What makes them fascinating and why are we interested in some stories and not others.
For example, I want to talk about the latest baby bump but also why we are obsessed with pregnant celebrities. I want to start a conversation about popular culture.
I plan to write two times per week about what is hot, what is not, and my opinions about those stories. I could be about beauty, fashion, media, film, books or even hidden great date ideas and restaurant reviews.
Feel free to write to me and tell me your stories, ideas, and why you think everyone is obsessed with Pop Culture.
I’ll share my Pop Op, if you share yours!
Let’s get started.
April 11, 2013