Grrr! Too Much Information!

Perhaps the most disturbing part of the "American Idol" controversy involving Paula Abdul's (search) alleged affair with contestant Corey Clark was the flood of sordid details.

Not only did Clark reveal to all who would listen the tale of his broken heart at the hands of his celebrity lover, he also put to rest the notion that "a gentleman never tells."

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While FOX recently announced that the "American Idol" judge will be allowed to stay on with the show because it found no cause for dismissal, enough dirty laundry was aired to the point that many of us never want to hear another word about Abdul.

Which brings me to another "talent" show that reveals too much about its talent: CBS' "Rock Star: INXS."

On the show, which has not gotten great ratings, the once-hot '80s rock band is auditioning for a new lead singer to replace Michael Hutchence (search), who died in an apparent suicide in 1997.

"Rock Star" is a great show. If you like seeing people put themselves out there to make their dreams come true, then this is right up there with "American Idol" (and hosts Brooke Burke (search) and Dave Navarro are a lot prettier than Ryan Seacrest, if that's even possible).

If you've been following the show, you might have observed that J.D. Fortune (search) has the rock star look, including the requisite tattoos and smoldering stare.

J.D. is also extremely good at arranging songs to fit his singing style, and he takes risks with his performances. One could argue he's the most musically talented of them all.

But it's too late for J.D. Fortune. He comes across as a conniving, backstabbing, spoiled little brat. Thanks to the show, we know him too well. And to know him is to Grrr! him.

And that's too bad.

The point is, if we didn't know anything about J.D. Fortune, we'd buy his records. We'd even make him a rock superstar.

Imagine if John Lennon and Paul McCartney's (search) bitter fights were aired for the world to see. Do you think there would have ever been a Beatles phenomenon? If The Allman Brothers' drug habits or personal clashes were broadcast every Monday night on CBS (or VH1), do you think we would have ever heard of "Rambling Man" or "Sweet Melissa"?

Of course not.

We consumers don't like to know what we're buying. Wrap it up in a pretty package and we're there. We don't really want to know how many trans fats there are, but since you told us, well, we don't want it anymore, no matter how good it tastes.

The same thing goes for our favorite artists. Too much information about an artist is never a good thing.

Why do you think Robert De Niro (search) and Al Pacino don't do "MTV Cribs" or get "Punk'd"? They know better.

Whitney Houston's made enough money, so if her fans see her on her reality show "Being Bobby Brown" and decide they don't like Whitney the person, oh well. What does she care anymore?

But if Whitney were on a reality show first, she might have never achieved her "One Moment in Time" that made her the mega-star she once was.

It's good to want to be successful. And if your success comes with fame and fortune, more power to you.

But just be careful how you get there, and don't reveal too much. We want mystery.

As for INXS, catch them at an arena near you with new lead singer Marty. At least that's my prediction.

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Mike Straka is the director of operations and special projects for, and covers entertainment and features on the Sunday program "FOX Magazine." He also writes the weekly Grrr! Column and hosts "The Real Deal" video segments on