How big reality TV shows like American Idol and The Voice alter society’s perception


Gabriel Silva&Silva [CC BY-SA 4.0 (]

The Voice judges to not look at the contestants while they perform. This image was taken in July 2016.

Kaitlyn Talenti, Guest Writer

What it takes to be a “star” in the modern music world

From tabloids and talk shows, all the way to television, we constantly dwell on this underlining factor of stardom and what it really takes.

What does it really boil down to? Is it the way you dress? Are you a certain age? Do you fall within a certain demographic, bracket, or class? All of these overwhelming factors that tie into stardom have shaped the music industry as a wholedrastically throughout time.

American Idol was one of the first reality musical television shows in the United States to break ground. American Idol is in fact one of the most successful talent shows in American history according to The Washington Post.This show, first airing in 2002, set the platform for the other various talent series to follow. The musical talent show gave us stars such as Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson, Clay Aiken, Adam Lambert, etc. Shows like American Idol specifically, have created an unhealthy and stereotypical ideology of stardom in modern day music.

Ideology in terms of fan base and stardom can really have an impact on the viewer, especially the younger more impressionable generation. Seeing the same star come out of a musical talent show can create a negative stigma or stereotype for the viewer. The issue with American Idol is that there are judges who pick these stars and decide who essentially comes out on top. The Voice and America’s Got Talentare breaking this stigma.

In this past season of America’s Got Talent, the winner was a young-man named Cody Lee. Lee was born deaf and autistic, but despite these struggles, he is nonetheless a fantastic entertainer.Lee was able to try out for the show, leaving the nation in awe. He ended up receiving the Golden Buzzer for his audition, his one and only audition, bringing him all the way to the final round. He then came out on top as the winner of season 14 of America’s Got Talent. This creates a sense of inspiration and aspiration for our nation as a whole. It shows us that anything is possible in this life, even if there are odds that have not been in your favor.

The Voice is another example of a musical talent show that has gone above and beyond in terms of set up and execution of determining talent in an unbiased way. The show has a total of six judges who are placed in giant, motorized chairs that are turned from the stage; so, they cannot see the performer. It is then their job as talented musicians themselves, to solely base the performer off of their “voice,” hence where the show gets its name.

The judge then takes in this contestant onto their team, where they then gain lessons from the judge or musician, and compete with the other teams through a series of rounds. All of the show’s terms and logistics aside, what The Voice has done in reference to auditioning and overall execution as a whole, is truly remarkable. There is no room for stereotypes or judgement to be passed off of appearances. The show solely bases the decision of winning on the actual talent, which for this specific show, is the artists voice.

Our generation is becoming more and more affected by main stream media each and every day. From marketing ploys, these big companies are trying to fulfill with their agendas to world altering politics, presidency’s, idolization of pop stars and people you have never even met. It is a lot. Any type of media or medium that is being used to represent musical talent or talent in general, bottom line needs to be more conciseness and aware of all the talent that exists out there.