American Idol

ABC renews American Idol for Season 19

Katy Perry in a Dumbo costume to celebrate Disney Night on American Idol. (ABC Photo)

Katy Perry in a Dumbo costume to celebrate Disney Night on American Idol. (ABC Photo)


In spite of declining ratings for Season 18, there will be a fourth season of American Idol on ABC next spring.

That shouldn’t come as a shock since Idol has already been encouraging singers to audition online for Season 19.

According to Hollywood Reporter, the renewal doesn’t yet include new contracts for host Ryan Seacest or judges Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie.

The same was the case last spring when Idol was renewed before the announcement that the entire cast would be returning as well.

In terms of ratings, Idol started Season 18 below Season 17 (the premiere chalked up a 1.2 rating among 19-49 years olds compared to 1.4 the year before), but caught up to and surpassed last season by the time Hollywood Week rolled around.

Then came the pandemic, a halt to live tapings and the decision to air two mid-season clip shows to buy times.

Ratings for those clips shows plummeted and Idol has yet to recover. Last week’s semifinals scored a rating of 1.0 and drew an estimated 6.16 million viewers, down 22 percent from the 7.87 who tuned in for the Season 18 semifinals.

But Idol’s return for a 19th season could offer hope for singing show fans because ABC planned a full slate of live shows before the pandemic, unlike The Voice, which never planned more than three voting rounds.

And while it’d be nice to have Ryan back as host, does it really matter if the judges return? Would anyone miss Katy Perry? It’s not as though they offer much in terms of useful critiques.

Idol wraps up Season 18 with Sunday’s finale, starting at 8 p.m.

Still in the running for the Season 18 crown are Julia Gargano, Louis Knight Jr., Jonny West, Arthur Gunn, Francisco Martin, Dillon James and Just Sam.

Two of those will likely be eliminated at the start of Sunday’s show, leaving five to compete for the title.

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