Jennifer Lopez Helps ‘American Idol’ Say Farewell

Jennifer Lopez as Detective Harlee Santos in "Shades of Blue,"
Jennifer Lopez as Detective Harlee Santos in "Shades of Blue," Photo: Peter Kramer/NBC

Water Mill homeowner Jennifer Lopez has a big week coming up with two television premieres in two days on Wednesday and Thursday, January 6 and 7. First, Lopez returns as a judge on the send-off season of Fox’s reality tv juggernaut American Idol on Wednesday at 8 p.m. Then, her new crooked-cop drama Shades of Blue premieres on NBC this Thursday at 10 p.m.

At the conclusion of last year’s American Idol Season 14, Fox announced that Season 15 would be the show’s “Farewell Season” in 2016. Lopez is back at the judges’ table with fellow musicians Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr., along with host Ryan Seacrest, this season, which is already looking like one full of nostalgia and callbacks to Idol‘s most famous, memorable and, of course, heartwarming moments (cue sad Hulk music).

It seems very likely we’ll be seeing things like a “Where’s Brian Dunkleman Now?” segment; the William Hung “She Bangs” audition and a surprise performance by the much-loved and ridiculed…ahem…”singer;” gag reels; bloopers; montages of the careers made and dreams dashed; and surely something about Sanjaya Malakar, the singer (and author!) who got through a succession of Season 6 eliminations by his unthreatening, tween-girls-love-me face and an insane array of hairdos. Perhaps we’ll even get a reading from his book Dancing to the Music in My Head: Memoirs of the People’s Idol—a favorite in the Dan’s Papers office.

Sanjaya Malakar "Dancing to the Music in My Head: Memoirs of the People's Idol" on display
Sanjaya Malakar’s “Dancing to the Music in My Head,” at the Dan’s office

But will the show’s original trio of judges—Hamptons regular Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson—make a guest appearance at the Season 15 auditions? What about the other past judges: Kara DioGuardi, Steven Tyler, Ellen DeGeneres, Hamptons visitor Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj? We’ll just have to watch and find out.

Certainly there will be a bit about the Carey/Minaj feud. There’s no doubt about that.

On the other hand, disqualified Season 2 contestant Corey Clark‘s (almost definitely bogus) ebook, They Told Me to Tell the Truth, So…: The Sex, Lies and Paulatics of One of America’s Idols, about an alleged affair with Abdul will probably NOT be mentioned.

Meanwhile, Lopez, Urban and Connick will help fans choose American Idol‘s final champion, while having some fun along the way. Scroll down to watch the American Idol Season 15 promo.

Lopez’s produces and plays the lead character, Harlee Santos, in Shades of Blue, also starring Ray Liotta (Goodfellas, Killing Them Softly) and Drea de Matteo (The Sopranos, Sons of Anarchy), which premieres at 10 p.m. Thursday on NBC. Critics, who received the first eight episodes of the series, are offering mixed reviews of this show about crooked cops who do the wrong thing for the right reasons.

Read more about Shades of Blue, which was originally slated to air January 21, and then January 14, here.

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