I confess to being a whore for American Idol.  I have watched the show every year and every year it gets worse and worse.  The pinnacle of its awfulness is now Ellen DeGeneres — who wouldn’t know funny if it ran up and bit her on the ear — but I digress.  If you’re an Idol fan like me, you know the show is never about finding the best singer.  American Idol is all about packaging a face and a body that can sell records — and that’s why I am telling you this year’s obvious winner of American Idol 9 is Ashley Rodriguez.

All the indicators for an Ashley Rodriguez win are already remarkably in place — even though we only learned who the top 24 are last night.  We have months of thumb-twiddling until they give Ashley her crown. 

I’m not suggesting American Idol is fixed, but any fan of the show knows the producers have their favorite contestants and Ashley is, by far, their odds-on favorite, and here’s how I know:

She’s been hidden in the show so far.  That’s always a big indicator that the producers are holding her back to surprise us later.  When we have seen glimpses of Ashley, her face fills the screen.  Her undeniable beauty is both winsome and stunning.

It’s time for an “urban” female from the East to win.  The last two Idols have been men.  In the history of the show, we have never had one gender win three times in a row.  It’s also time for a non-Southerner to win.  Seven of the eight Idols were South of the Mason-Dixon line.

She has “the package look.”  She’s tremendously intriguing and her personality sings better than her throat.  Watch Simon try to make her cry by not liking her at first and then he’ll turn with her later in the show as “she proves” to him that she’s a worthy contestant.  Or, he’ll like her straight off, but then turn against her for a week only to be — surprise! — won back to her side the next.  Every winner of American Idol has had to face down the wrath of Simon Cowell — just to throw us off the scent of the eventual “winner” — and Ashley will be no different.

Ashley was “interviewed” by the Boston Fox affiliate before she auditioned for the final panel of judges.  Why spend so much time and energy promoting a local singer who wasn’t going to win big?

Ashley Rodriguez has suspiciously become “Puerto Ricanized” to take full
advantage of her ethnicity and cultural fan base and that’s important
in promotion and packaging to help uniquely define her in the context of
the American Idol brand.  She had been using the name “Ashley
Makailah” before her turn on Idol. 

Here’s a screenshot of Ashley’s current official American Idol 9 page and you can see the naming confusion right there.  In text on the page, she’s funnily both “Ashley Rodriguez” and “Ashley Makailah” — and in her video, she introduces herself as “Ashley Rodriguez” while a graphic appears labeling her “Ashley Makailah.”

Those inexcusable mistakes won’t last long on the website, but it is all
clear evidence we now know it is Fox who wants her labeled “Puerto
Rican” — by using “Rodriguez” instead of “Makailah” — and when Ashley
mentions in her video there has never before been a Puerto Rican
finalist on American Idol, all warrants and suspicions are confirmed.

If you do a simple internet search for Ashley right now, you will find she has been promoted as “Ashley Makailah” and not “Ashley Rodriguez.”  I’m sure all those links will quickly reflect the pressed name change.

Ashley Makailah Rodriguez may not be the best singer, but she makes up for any lack of rhythm and vocal talent with a blazing, yet charming, personality and a fantastic face you will not forget.  Place your bets now on Ashley Rodriguez because she’s already won American Idol 9.


  1. I couldn’t follow “American Idol” this year so I am yet to experience her voice but she looks gorgeous — no question asked.
    I agree with you David, I have my doubts about the real intention of these reality shows…what % of it is to promote/ find real talent and what % of it is to promote the entire pacakage is the question.

  2. American Idol is all about selling records. They want an image to promote and protect.
    My favorite contestant this year was Shelby Dressel. She was cut just before the final 24. Half of her face is “dead” because of nerve damage and yet she sings like an angel… out of one side of her mouth.
    So many people were rooting for her — including Ellen and Simon — and Kara and Randy follow Simon… so that tells me the decision to cut Shelby was the producers’, not the four judges’. I’m sure the producers were put off by her birth defect in the most shallow possible way…

  3. American Idol occasionally has flashes of inspiration but it seems to have gone from an amateur contest to already polished folk who come prepared with publicity teams and are just waiting for a contract.

  4. The show was much more fun with real people, Gordon. After the fantastic Taylor Hicks won — who Simon still loathes to this day — the show was never the same again and a “real” person was guaranteed never to win again. Now we have lots of flash but little substance.
    Simon’s X-Factor will be what Idol should’ve become — a search for really talented real people — and I hope Simon’s new show puts the horrible-grammar-named “America’s Got Talent” in its grave forever.

  5. UPDATE:
    Ooof! The first live show was painful last night. All the women were really awful singing.
    Simon cruelly thrashed Ashley for no other reason than to dampen her chances — he seems out to get her and to sabotage her effort.
    We all know Simon sometimes votes with a mean streak rather than an aesthetic sensibility because he’s intrinsically a vicious person. Let’s hope Ashley can escape his wrath the next week or two and survive — even though she’s already won.

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