Is the American Idol Finale Red State vs. Blue State?

The Drudge Report picked up on the New York Daily News pitching tonight's American Idol finale on Fox as a red state vs. blue state battle between Kris Allen of Arkansas and Adam Lambert of California. (As for just how blue Lambert can go, see the Best Week Ever page connected to VH-1, where Lambert's entire face is blue, and his antics are "blue" as well.) Media outlets like Entertainment Weekly have hinted at Lambert's "flamboyant" appearance -- and rooted for him because of it -- but will Fox be able to handle Lambert in full shock-jock mode? On a show that's been seen as family-friendly?David Saltonstall of the Daily News used former Clinton-Gore spinner Chris Lehane to add political spin to the Idol finale:

The way Lehane sees it, Adam is the liberal in this race, the hipster from big blue California with a certain progressive flair, including painted fingernails and copious amounts of eyeliner. Kris is more of a red-state country boy - a baby-faced, guitar-pickin', churchgoin' son of the land of Woo Pig Soiee, which voted solidly Republican in the last election. "It will come down to whether Adam is able to build on the blue-state, progressive wave we have seen building since 2006, or whether this is a last gasp for the red state viewer/voter," explained Lehane by e-mail. As a Californian, Lehane conceded he's pulling for favorite son Adam. "I am hoping that Dick Cheney comes out and tells people to vote for Kris, thus assuring Adam wins," joked Lehane, a father of two "Idol"-watching tots.

Will whoever wins this contest be seen as the winner on the musical merits? Or will it become a political/cultural narrative?

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis