Mudd Slinging

I’ve never been a fan before, but the past two seasons my kids have coerced me into watching American Idol with them.  Well last night, I took great offense to how a particular contestant was treated.  Oddly, I shared this some of my friends at lunch today and one of them sent me a link to this story.  Since it captures my feelings so well, I thought I’d repost it here.

Mark MuddGuess what, American Idol. There are people all over this great country and there are all kinds of colloquialisms out there. Some might call it local flavor, but it’s all America so you’d do well to do a little bit of homework before you smear a guy’s name across national television. For those who were inclined to tune into the trainwreck portion of the newest season of American Idol, you might have caught poor Mark Mudd getting harassed by Paula and Simon after they rejected him from the show. As Mr. Mudd was leaving he said to the judges “Take care and be careful.”

At this Paula freaked out, accusing Mudd of threatening them. He tried to explain that it was just a general statement of farewell but she was having none of it and Simon was right there with her. Even more offensive was the Idol hype machine jumping all over this as well. We got teasers on Tuesday’s show and all the way up to Mudd’s performance about how he “threatened” the judges and was all crazy and dangerous. Horseshit!

See, I live in a small town in the Midwest and went to college in the Ozarks. I can’t count how many times I’ve been advised to “be careful” when I was leaving someplace, or someone was leaving mine. It’s used interchangeably with such phrases as “See you later,” and “Take care.” Oh wait, Mark did say “take care,” too. Guess what guys, he was being friendly. In fact, “Be careful” is often reserved for people you care about, because you don’t want anything bad to happen to them.

But of course American Idol should know all about that, right? After all, they truly represent all of America! As long as all of America talks like people on the West Coast. I guess it’s a shame that Mark Mudd was raised in a Midwestern rural community where he learned such values as caring for his fellow human beings and respect for others. Certainly the judges showed him very little respect during his audition as they do so many of the contestants.

Then they made a mockery of Mark Mudd, putting him on television because he has a certain look of danger (which he does, but so did Scott Savol and you let him through … oh wait, that’s more of an urban dangerous; I get it now!) and he said something that they didn’t understand. Hell, they were in Louisville. Couldn’t they have maybe asked a few locals what that expression was if truly none of them had ever heard of it? Or check it out on the Internet. Maybe folks were laughing at Mark on the coasts and maybe they think this poor guy was actually threatening the judges, but those of us in the Midwest know better.

Despite how his admittedly bad singing and his image was received by the judges, Mark Mudd was being a nice guy. He was wishing the judges well. And they were dicks about it. And then American Idol was an even bigger dick about the whole thing, trying to sully Mudd’s name over the span of at least a week. I say shame on you American Idol, and I say Mark Mudd deserves an on-air apology. Maybe something like this: “We would like to apologize to Mark Mudd for making him look like a crazy serial killer in our promos and hype for the show American Idol. As it turns out, he’s just a really, really nice guy. And we’re assholes.”

Y’all take care and be careful,



3 Responses

  1. I don’t know… Seacrest giving a high five to the blind guy might be one of the best American Idol moments ever.

  2. i felt sorry for Mr. Mudd since they obviously singled him out as the creep de jour

  3. I feel threatened!!!! 🙂

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