Australian Idol: Verdict Show

“Idol’s Monday night was always a bit of a naff for the audience because it was really just 15 minutes of content rolled out over an hour, but we’ve recognised that and strengthened it,” Dicko said two weeks ago.

To borrow a Big Brother phrase: I don’t think so.

Instead, Monday night’s Verdict edition consisted of 15 minutes of content rolled out over 70 minutes.

This year Idol decided to flag the bottom three at the top of the show and re-open the voting lines (ker-ching) to close at 8pm AEST. Viewers in WA had previously been encouraged to check the Idol website to learn the name of the bottom three for voting that closed at 6pm WST. In South Australia and Northern Territory, the voting closed at 7pm CST -which is actually 30 minutes earlier than the equivalent time elsewhere, of 7:30pm CST. Sorry, Adelaide & Darwin.

That process has only dragged out the results even more.

The show resorted to interviewing its ‘bottom three’ no less than three times: when they were announced, after they had sung a second time by Ricki-Lee backstage, and then on the couch a third time. How many times can you say you weren’t happy with your performance

Meanwhile the show played ‘journey’ video packages, interviewed some of the other finalists, saw the Idols share their week in video packages (including a plug for a car), a song from American Idol winner Jordin Sparks and finally – finally – at 8:30pm, returned to the point of the night: revealing the results.

Meanwhile viewers of 90210, Burn Notice and Torchwood were forced to wait an additional ten minutes for their shows – a risk indeed when some of them are barely registering decent numbers.

Clearly the Verdict show is dependent on two immovable things: its 8pm voting cut-off and tallying the votes. But after six years there was far too much excess.

On the basis of this it would seem TEN is indeed more interested in dragging its viewers across to 8:45pm (when it finally ended) and avoid losing viewers to City Homicide or alternate programming.

For the record, Idol‘s first contestant voted off was Jonny Taylor, ahead of Teale and Sophie.

Australian Idol Show Watch


  1. The verdict show should be 30 minutes. The interviews and responses by contestants is always the same answer. Who cares?

    For me though Idol HAS TO GO. It’s way past it’s use-by date. The singers are completely out of touch with what’s popular as they’re all ‘pretend’ musicians who don’t have a clue about the music industry and what is actually a good song.

    Seriously – would you buy a record made by any of these contestants???? Combine them all together and their combined talent wouldn’t even be equal to the talent in Elvis Presley’s left toe.

  2. Well I don’t want to stop coming here each week. There’s just certain things I don’t like being spoiled about.

    I’m not saying anything against you David. It’s your site and you can do what you want. I just thought I’d ask so I don’t catch any unwanted spoilers.

    Thanks for taking the time to reply.

  3. There’s no easy answer to this sort of stuff for shows like Idol, BB, Dancing, It Takes Two etc.

    I avoid front page spoilers for things that haven’t aired, but once something has aired, yes it’s fair game. Viewers on the East Coast want the info instantly, and there are even viewers on the West Coast who want to know ahead of time. One of the problems is if I hold off posting the news there are other sites (including networks and newspapers) that freely publish it, so it risks this site lagging behind.

    As such I’ve decided to continue to publish with an East Coast skew and once something has aired it’s newsworthy including on the front page. ie. Eurovision happens earlier in Europe but I didn’t publish the winner til it aired via SBS. Emmys are live next week so they are fair game.

    If you want to hold off coming here for an 2 hrs to avoid hearing a winner or loser that’s your call I guess.

    In TV land, a winner is news worthy.

  4. David, when you post the results each week, you won’t put the picture of the one that’s voted out on the front page will you? I know you didn’t this time and you can see who’s voted out by clicking on the article but I just want to know for sure so I don’t accidentally spoil it. I’ve avoided this site for a couple of days just in case I found out by mistake.

    On another note, I really hate how long the verdict show is. It’s ridiculous! I like how the bottom three are announced at the beginning and they perform again but after that, it’s just way, way too long.

  5. In reply to Ben Tree, they official site did have the results, as they were announced. They just didn’t place them on the front page. You had to click on ‘Voting’ on the menu.

  6. The Wikipedia listing puts the top amount for SMS revenue at $16m in 2004. Its subsequent estimates for later years aren’t sourced from anywhere other than this 2003 article. It is probably also gross revenue estimates so not all going to TEN.

    That said, I’m sure it remains a money spinner for the network.

  7. Worst season ever. For all his faults, at least Mark Holden recognised talent (and the lack of it). He was the only judge last year who constantly urged the contestants to step up (until it became obvious that most could not). This year’s Top 12 is even worse, and much of the blame has to go to the three wimps posing as judges. Seriously, who thinks Tom, Sophie, Teale, or even Luke can actually SING? And can someone please tell Chrislyn that every night isn’t Aretha Franklin night. I thought 2006 was a standout year, but it’s been downhill ever since. No David Cooks here, I’m afraid.

  8. I like to see Who’s in and out but I could see the writing on the wall when you mentioned the announcing of the three lowest at the beginning of the show.

    Not only do I feel this is a money making exercise as I have mentioned before and I can see you agree David, but I decided to tape the lot and edited their show to a little over 10 minutes – no commercials, no repeats of last nights performances, and definitely no vote casting on my behalf 🙂

    All in all a good result for me – A loss for TEN – and an hour of my life back!

    All good 🙂

  9. I always thought it cost to vote for american idol, but you’re right that it doesn’t. I guess being the number 1 show means they can afford not to make income from votes. Must be a lot of people over there getting rsi.

  10. Todd and the rest (nice to see a contingent from the Official Idol Forums here…) methinks you’re being a teeensy little bit defensive. “Haters”? Give me a break. I watch the show because I like the show, but I don’t blindly think everything they do with it is the best thing ever. The Australian version of Idol has historically made *extremely* bad decisions with the format of its Monday night verdict show, and this year’s is no exception. It could be a lot better. What’s wrong with expressing that opinion? And why does that make me a “hater”?

    Tony: Holden “trademarked the Touchdown”? Unlikely, but also incorrect to credit the poor doofus with inventing the idea. At least one judge on American Idol had done it before Holden magically came up with it.

    As for the money Ten makes off voting, let me remind everyone once again that ALL voting on American Idol is completely, 100% free of charge to the viewers.

  11. I haven’t watched the show this year. I’ve discovered that I really don’t miss spending that 2 hours a week every week for 3 months with Idol anymore. The show’s more or less the same every year. Funnily enough, I’ve watched every season except this one. I did enjoy Battle of the Choirs and the Aussie SYTYCD earlier in the year, but now I guess I’m finding Idol just doesn’t interest me. It’ll probably still be around for another 5 years minimum, its one of Ten’s most successful programs and if they axed it they wouldn’t have anything to take its place, other than hour-long editions of Taken Out

  12. I think you under-estimate the success, Ladette – especially in the US where most of the Idol winners remain huge stars.

    In Australia, Guy, Shannon, Anthony and Damien have all carved reasonable careers. A few others, like Rikki-Lee, are also making their mark. Even the “over-exposed” Axel Whitehead has just released a critically-acclaimed cd.

  13. Sly Doggie you are 100% WRONG

    The show makes approximately 26 million dollars (a year) in profit from the voting alone. THAT is the reason why the bloody thing is still (and will continue to be) on air.

    The more you see of these people behind the scenes, the more you become attached. Which equals more votes. Why do you think everyone on the show has a sob story?

    There have been 2 or 3 genuinely good singers with staying power come out from idol in the whole world.

    The show is not about making a star, it’s $$$ all the way.

    Good on em I say.

    Wise up people! Vote with your remote!

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