February 27, 2007 12:01 AM by Joe Reality
During a recent American Idol performance show, Simon Cowell asked Ryan Seacrest if
he was trying to date one of the contestants. The question came as the
result of Seacrest heaping some very complimentary praise on American
Idol semi-finalist Alaina Alexander. Seacrest said that Simon Cowell
didn’t even deserve a response, but afterwards Seacrest grabbed
Alaina’s hands, looked into her eyes, and wished her good luck.
Based on Cowell’s comment, Reality TV Magazine decided to conduct a study to see if there were any differences in the way that Ryan Seacrest treated the top twenty-four American Idol semi-finalists. Our very unscientific research study basically involved re-watching the two top twelve performance shows and looking to see if Seacrest put his hands on the contestants after they performed. One thing that we noticed is that Seacrest was very touchy feely with some contestants, and with others not so much. While Seacrest offers handshakes and pats on the back to many contestants, his most aggressive move appears to be the arm around the back of the contestant with the added shoulder rub.
Among the top twelve boys, Ryan Seacrest gave the arm around and shoulder rub to Brandon Rogers, Sundance Head, Nick Pedro, and Blake Lewis. In a surprise reverse move, Paul Kim was the only contestant to be the aggressor and put his arm around and grab Seacrest’s shoulder. Seacrest only gave Paul a pat on the back in return. Considering that Paul Kim was the very first of the top twenty-four to be kicked off the show, one word of wisdom to future contestants is that while Seacrest can touch contestants’ shoulders, contestants should not touch Seacrest’s shoulder.
Many other male contestants like Rudy Cardenas, Chris Richardson, Sanjaya Malakar, AJ Tabaldo also qualified for a pat on the back from Seacrest but no shoulder rub. With Phil Stacey however, Seacrest didn’t even bother with the arm around warm-up and just went in straight for the shoulder grab. The least touched male contestants by Seacrest were Jared Cotter and Chris Sligh. Jared Cotter only received a handshake, while Seacrest didn’t appear to make contact with Chris Sligh with his hands at all. Of course, Simon Cowell had just called Seacrest “sweetheart” after Sligh’s performance, so maybe the host avoided contact with Sligh in a show of manliness.
Among the American Idol girls, Ryan Seacrest was noticeable less touchy, feely. Stephanie Edwards, Amy Krebs, Leslie Hunt, and Sabrina Sloan only received a hand to the back, while Jordin Sparks, Nicolle Tranquillo and Haley Scarnato didn’t appear to be touched by Seacrest at all. Among the girls, Melinda Doolittle, Gina Glocksen, and Lakisha Jones all received arm arounds with shoulder rubs. While Alaina Alexander, who was the catalyst behind our research project, did not get a shoulder rub, she was the only contestant to have Seacrest face her on stage and grab hold of her hands.
All in all, Ryan Seacrest was more hands-on with the male contestants than he was with the female contestants. However, if we had to pick the contestant that Seacrest shared the most physical contact with then we would have to go with Lakisha Jones. When Seacrest put his arm around Lakisha, there appeared to be some of the most aggressive shoulder rubbing and squeezing of the competition. Maybe, Seacrest has already picked out Lakisha as the frontrunner in the competition and is trying to get in good before she makes it big.