American Idol has rules to keep the live show running on time. It's required members of the audience arrive to the studio three hours early. No cell phones. Food isn't allowed either. And the staff? Well, most of them are expected to be at the show early in the afternoon or even morning as a lot of preparation goes into making a live show work. So when Nicki Minaj blew into the studio late for the first live show, loyal fans started questioning the upcoming season.
While Ryan Seacrest joked about the freeways being full, keep in mind the studios aren't near any big highways like he suggested. Add that the show is taped at 5pm in Los Angeles so traffic wouldn't have been at the peak either. Those hollow jokes covered an unknown problem that is much bigger and kept Nicki Minaj from the set.
So what does this mean? There was something else going on with Nicki Minaj on Wednesday night when she was the last judge to arrive. Being late to a massive project like American Idol isn't just an accident as every moment is planned down to the second. Showing up late and not apologizing might be the beginning of the end.
Fans who saw last night’s tardiness are now reassessing whether they are willing to spend the time watching the show or voting this season. If a judge can’t show up on time, then who is to say the talent is worthy of the fan’s time either?