Parents' Guide to

American Idol

By Pam Gelman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Long-running music competition is consistently entertaining.

TV Fox , ABC Reality TV 2002
American Idol Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 9+

Based on 37 parent reviews

age 10+

Best Show on TV

I am finally writing this long overdue review - there is too much negativity in the world and time for us to all come together. The positivity, fun, caring and kindness the cast of American Idol display every episode is what we need more of in the world. The chemistry and real fun Katy, Lionel, Luke and Ryan share is a breath of fresh air. They are fun, funny, caring and show us every episode how much they love what they are doing. I have been a huge fan of each individually as artists - their work on American Idol brings it to a new level. So excited for the new season and want to let ABC know what great casting choices!
age 18+

Maximum age limit should be raised to 99

This is a TV show that has some of the most disgusting forms of management. It teaches the public how to age discriminate, it teaches children to disrespect their elders. Only during the show's 6th season on Fox did they do one thing right by allowing Sherman Pore at the age of 64 to audition. When he sang very well, that was the signal to get rid of the maximum age limit of 28 and to give that maximum age limit a mighty boost clear all the way up to 99. If I was the top manager of that show, and heard Sherman sing and loved his singing, that maximum age limit of 28 would have been out with the trash.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (37 ):
Kids say (99 ):

The hugely popular series, which has been on the air for over 14 years on two different networks, has become a staple in reality competition entertainment. Some of judges' often over-the-top personalities have become infamous, as well as reality-show benchmarks. Meanwhile, the contestants' emotional, sometimes astounding performances grab those watching at home, who also feel involved in the process, since their votes determine the show's outcome.

Many contestants are clearly looking for their moment in the spotlight. But plenty of the Idol wannabes are in it because they're truly talented singers who are dreaming of a big break. Many winners and runners-up have also gone on to become true pop stars. Like it or not, American Idol's show formula -- as unforgiving as it can sometimes be-- really does work.

TV Details

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