Fools Rush In on 'Idol' and 'Dancing'

It was destined to happen at some point: my TiVo malfunctioned this week, so I'm going to have to do this column based on what I read about Tuesday night's "Idol."

Ha ha, happy April Fools' Day!

OK, so that was a silly one. But was it as silly as when Ryan started off the show by telling us that Simon was going to be on "The Moment of Truth?" Here's the thing about April Fools' jokes: they're ALWAYS silly. Still, I have to say that this whole April Fools' Day thing got me wondering, who's fooling whom here?

Randy Jackson, for example, will never be Simon Cowell no matter how negative he's become. Don't think we haven't noticed you trying to Cowell it up, dawg, with all that "I don't know, man — for me, it wasn't your best" stuff.

Personally, I liked the old Randy better — the guy who offered up generic positive statements in between calling performances "pitchy," dropping names or just taking up air before Paula's nonsense and Simon's critiques.

And Syesha Mercado, despite belting out "I Will Always Love You" (which Dolly Parton, Tuesday night's mentor, wrote), will never be Whitney Houston. Sure, the girl's got a voice and she undeniably has a knack for scoring some of the best songs, but I always imagine her getting into vicious brawls behind the scenes in order to get said songs. And Bobby Brown's ex she is not.

(There was also this cringe-inducing moment when she was practicing when she started crowing about the "emotional connection" she was having with the song, complete with tears in her eyes. I ask: Where were those fake tears when Danny Noriega got kicked to the curb?)

Carly Smithson, meanwhile, seems determined to fool the world into believing that she's the tough chick — what with the ink-heavy arm, the barroom job and the husband with the tattooed face (who probably helps her to lose every vote in Middle America each time he shows up in the audience).

Yet our alleged tough Irish lass is, I think, a secret softie. Think about it: she sings ballads and adult contemporary numbers and looked like she might cry when Simon told her that she needed help in the fashion department.

Then there's Kristy Lee Cook who, despite last week's sly and perfectly timed patriotic number, still isn't fooling me into believing she's a contender. And David Archuleta, who continues to smile like an angel and insist that he's picking all of his own songs, despite those rumors about a stage dad that could put the moms on "I Know My Kid's a Star" to shame.

And speaking of fools, did you get a load of those wacky side projects some of the "Dancing with the Stars" folks have? Kristi Yamaguchi wins hot dog eating contests? Priscilla Presley has her own psychic hotline? Shannon Elizabeth runs the "MacGyver" fan club? The Gute raps?

Thankfully, those who make up the "Dancing with the Stars" viewing audience aren't nearly as foolish. I'm basing this assessment on the fact that two left-footed but ridiculously hilarious Adam Carolla continues to remain on the show while the Gute got kicked off.

And that, my friends, is no April Fools' joke.

Anna David is a freelance writer. Her novel, " Party Girl ," is in stores.