If you’re like me, you sat and plodded patiently through this past, awful season of American Idol knowing that at the very least we’d receive some sort of consolation in knowing that Crystal, the immensely talented busker from Ohio, would win it all and thus preserve the one thing this franchise had left: a thread of legitimacy. But alas, it was not meant to be. Lee DeWyze took the crown on last night’s show, thus serving up yet another upset in the hallowed history of American Idol. I wasn’t feeling the choice, but was I tremendously upset? Nah. Not really. Like many other people, I just didn’t really care who won ultimately. I was pushing for Crystal, but eh, Lee’s fine too, I suppose. Granted, he can’t quite hit any notes, and granted, he looks overwhelmed by the mere sight of a tulip, but hey, if there’s anything we learned about the reappearance of Taylor Hicks last night, it’s that star power isn’t necessary to win Idol. All you need is a strong blue-collar fan base, and you’re golden.
How else to explain Lee’s victory? It certainly wasn’t because of musicality or talent or any semblance of a dynamic personality. Clearly his Everyman from Chicago persona resonated a bit more strongly than Crystal’s Earth mother, feathers-in-the-hair, coffeeshop look. Besides, she lacked Lee’s humble nature (and perhaps some decent quality toothpaste), and that can work against you.