Ellen Degeneres as Guest Judge on So You Think You Can Dance – VIDEO

Via People

A kind soul edited together all of Ellen Degeneres’ remarks from her guest judging stint on So You Think You Can Dance this past   summer. Check it out after the jump.

Ellen’s best moments: Complimenting Evan after Nigel Lythgoe cruelly and unnecessarily criticized his looks, and her heartfelt reaction to Tyce Diorio’s contemporary routine highlighting breast cancer awareness.

The Evan bit illustrates nicely what Ellen will do very well–fulfilling Paula Abdul’s role as the judge who is “compassionate and kind.”

But as far as offering substantive critiques? The jury is still out. I hope there is less shtick, and more critiques that focus on the actual performance.   I found most of her one liners distracting and unfunny.

Video after the JUMP…

Follow Me!

mj santilli

Founder/Editor at mjsbigblog.com
Founder and editor of mjsbigblog.com, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted.I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!
Follow Me!

  • suebrody

    I watched it at the time and thought she sucked. She said some moderately funny, scripted things, and then ran out of things to say so was like, Oh, that was…really good. I hate to sound like I’m part of VFTW, but it really was painful. However, I think she’ll be very good on Idol, b/c she knows more about singing (how do you critique dancing if you don’t know anything about it, aside from enjoying it?!) and has been a fan/viewer of Idol from day one. In any case, I am giving her the benefit of the doubt, but *not* based on her gig on SYTYCD.

  • ianaleah

    I enjoyed it, But, once again, per usual, Ellen jokes about dinking. did that daily on her own show and if she is not a lush, why do it.But American Idol was smart to hire her and it came about easily which is a good sing for ‘meant to be’. Might be the only good thng on the show actually.

  • gangreen29

    I don’t mean for to this to come across as attacking MJ, but take for example your recaps of American Idol vs So You Think You Can Dance. In sytycd you are much less opinionated about your feelings for the dances, probably because you don’t have as much dancing knowledge as the judges, just like the position Ellen was in. American Idol on the other hand is a subject that you are able to write extensively and give a good counter opinion to some of the judging. I think Ellen will be able to do this as well because music is something that we all have strong opinions about, and does not take nearly the kind of technical knowledge to understand that dance does.

  • LoveContinuum

    I think she’s frikkin hilarious. And that’s why I watch TV. For a laugh. I think we take AI too seriously, most of us. It’s a TV show. It’s entertainment. Ellen is good at that. I’ll miss Paula, but thumbs up on their new pick.

  • becausehelives

    yes i remember she was very funny that night. but idol is not about comedy or laughs. people hate on the judges for not giving constructive criticism so let’s see what happens. i think simon is considered the best judge b/c he says it like it is. no mucking abt.

  • koshka

    I think you have a point here & I completely agree. When I watch SYTYCD, I completely enjoy the dancing, but I can’t at all make comment on how well it is performed since I don’t observe dancers on a daily or even weekly basis. At least with music, I can make (like everyone else) an opinion easily. I might even have some musical history or tidbits to add. With dance, I couldn’t even tell you the difference between most of the ballroom routines.

    Also as I keep saying… this is a reality show, interested in entertaining, not necessarily finding the next undiscovered talents. You might even say they hope to find the next person whose fame the feed to the American masses then milk for every cent for the next few years. I really is mass media and marketing at its finest & I love to watch how they do it.

  • https://twitter.com/draddee Sunn


    “And where are the clowns?
    Send in the clowns
    There ought to be clowns.
    Well, maybe next year.”

  • colette

    I’m open-minded on this queston.

    First off, there’s often little time to say anything more than a few sentences on Idol critiques (especially since they added a fourth judge!),

    Second, I love her remarks about not being up for footsie-wootsie with Simon. That stuff really got nauseating last season, when the bored five-year olds on the panel goofed off at the expense of the contestants.

    Third, though I wish Randy would expand his ridiculously limited vocabulary, he knows something about music obviously. And I think Kara does too, despite the gag-me coronation song she foisted on Kris Allen. But looking back at her comments over the past year, though there were some icky remarks (“That’s artristry!” “You have the right package” ), she often had constructive things to say — and Kris, among others, said she would be very generous in chatting with them about matters musical offstage. She’s produced, written and performed for years, and knows a lot — even if I don’t share her taste in music particularly. But I wasn’t ever a big fan of Paula’s own music either!

    I think the warmth, fuzziness and humor of Ellen will come in handy — if she just puts in her 2 cents and doesn’t get gimmicky about it. I just wonder how she’s going to tape her talk show every day and fit in this too???

  • sma11ie

    I’m happy with this, but we’ll see how it pans out. I thought she had some good moments on SYTYCD. I agree that there wasn’t much she could say at times because dance is harder to critiques as a layman, but singing is different.

    I still would’ve preferred 3 judges and more SINGING, but alas, if the producers are hell-bent on having four, I guess Ellen’s a good choice. I sincerely hope with Paula gone, and Ellen here, Kara would really step up and carve out a clear niche for herself– with Paula stuttering out and tripping over musical terms last season, I think Kara wasn’t sure where she fit. Kara should focus now on being the sole articulate (provided she improves from last year) musical expert, and stop focusing on the “package”. To a certain extent, Simon’s the one who worries about the whole package. Randy is supposed to be the musical expert too, but he’s verbally useless. Kara needs to be specific with her critiques and focus on the singing and musicianship, and I know she never explained it well, but it’s true, we need someone to talk about the artistry.

    I think this panel could work. Now, please get rid of the top 36 format!!!

  • bmms

    edit: don’t tell posters what to do or what to think keep your remarks focused on the subject

    I’m definitely happy that she is the fourth judge. I love her show and she is an intelligent hilarious comedian.

    Also, Paula was getting on my nerves. Her continued loss of words and using adjectives that she couldn’t even comprehend was getting downright boring! Her banter with Simon was becoming so childish. Furthermore, Paula had her ‘chance’ so to speak. I cheered after her decision to leave because she was unsatisfied with the bling bling that the producers were offering. Good for her. It’s obvious the producers had just about enough of her. Yay Ellen! ;-)

  • fearbear

    I thought she was funny here! I think Ellen is always funny anyway, I think she’ll do well on AI. And this is already getting lots of attention so I think it’s going to work very well for the show.

  • cooksgenes

    edit DON’T TELL POSTERS HOW TO POST or I’ll put you in moderation

    I think Ellen is the best choice for replacing Paula. If anything, I think you MJ have been too mean, harsh and picky to the show lately and I mean it. Are you still bitter because you were 100% sure that Paula would stay. Face the reality MJ. Did you give any recommendation?

  • jinxx315

    I thought Ellen was hilarious. I think her guest judging was more of a “fun” thing to do and she knew her opinion on dancing wouldn’t be taken seriously. I am still not sure how she could fit into American Idol though. She really has no experience in the music business. So Ellen has watched AI from the beginning, well so have a lot of people. Thanks for posting this!

  • will

    Okay, it wasn’t the utter disaster that some people had led me to expect — but it was annoying. She delivered everything in the rhythm and style of a stand-up routine, and you could tell she had prepared a few “bits” beforehand (the gated community) that she was going to use come hell or high water. The closest she got to a specific critique relevant to the dancers before her was “I love your face.” Thanks for that trenchant analysis Ellen.

    I think she was basically just very nervous and uncomfortable because she was so obviously out of her element. But let’s just hope she learned from this experience.

  • luvadamlambert

    ppl it’s just mj’s opinion.chiiiiil.:). I personally loved ellen on sytycd and thought she was hilarious.but I’m 12 and to me (or at least it should be) suite life is considered funny.and I have low standards:D

  • Truthiness

    Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.

    Very schticky, totally useless as criticism. Worst of all? mostly unfunny.

    Hopefully she will be better on AI. Maybe.

  • Soberba

    She just repeats the same jokes. And that’s just one episode. Can you imagine a hole season of this? Most of her comments aren’t about the performance. She makes jokes and at the end says that she loved it. It’s basically the same comment to every contestant. I just don’t think Ellen is used to being in a show that is not about her. Her talk show is all about her and her guests are just sidekicks. Nothing wrong about that in her talk show, but Idol is suposed to be about the contestants. The comments of the judges are suposed to be about the performances. But I’m sure she’ll bring a lot of viewers, and that’s all that matters for a TV show.

  • http://absinthedreamers.blogspot.com/ Starrlight

    Well of course it’s MJ’s opinion. It’s her blog. That said, just cause I read it doesn’t mean I have to agree with it. And if she posts it, I am pretty sure she can wear the big girl pants and take disagreements.

    Honestly, I think you have a bias going in on Ellen, MJ. No problem there, other people have them as well. I just tend to skim the Ellen related content because of it because frankly it is getting a bit old. I’d rather wait and see how she does on Idol than rehash SYTYCD.

  • luvadamlambert

    She’s already better than kara or shit 4 brains (that’s her vftw or topidol name I can’t remember,and today I actually feel it fits).oma I’m happy dancing thinking of randy Simon paula and ellen judging!!!! now I’m back to life.sad.

  • Mary102

    Completely agree with you, MJ, about Ellen’s one-liners from SYTYCD. My mom and I (fans of both SYTYCD and AI) commented that if she says just once “I can do that” like she kept doing on SYTYCD, we’re going to scream at the tv :-)

  • ross

    Very schticky, totally useless as criticism. Worst of all? mostly unfunny.

    ITA, Truthiness. She was fairly likeable, but that’s it.

    Hopefully she will be better on AI. Maybe.

    I think she will be. We really can’t tell much about what kind of an Idol judge she’ll be, based on one guest appearance on SYTYCD.

    Once she’s involved in the process, I wouldn’t be surprised if she becomes the most invested judge there. Because she does seem to care about the performers. I have a feeling she’ll be taking the job pretty seriously.

  • abbysee

    Yawn, I love Ellen, so I am gonna stop bitching about how I think it’s a craptastic idea, and just wait until January, when they upend the show, and spoil our spoiler fun. Ho, hum. Oh yeah, it is Mj’s blog so she sorta can say what she wants. Repeatedly, ad nauseum, just like we all do on this blog every day, :)

  • Ellie2

    With Paula gone, I think we need someone compassionate on the panel and that person will be Ellen. Often Paula seemed to be the only judge who remembered that these are kids pursuing a life-long dream and putting it all out there every week in a very scary environment…live TV. Now, I hope Ellen will be more coherent than Paula and will also offer constructive criticism for those contestants who just don’t manage to perform up to their potential for whatever reason. But personally I’m glad to know there is someone on the panel who will (hopefully)genuinely care about the contestants and want them to do well.

  • Grammie Kari

    Colette, I like your comments about Kara because she may become an important asset. Although I didn’t agree with everything she said, she knows music. Now will someone send Randy a dictionary?

    Kara needs to be specific with her critiques and focus on the singing and musicianship, and I know she never explained it well, but it’s true, we need someone to talk about the artistry.

    Sma11ie, I share your thoughts and have posted this opinion. Kara will see that we are willing to give her a chance because we need this balance on the judging panel.

    I pretty much agree with MJ, and hope that Ellen will do her homework on the contestants. I don’t want to hear Ellen jokes all night long.

  • twinkle

    i think it will be different than her SYTYCD comments because she will be working with/judging/invested in the contestants from the beginning. coming into a guest judge role on a show that is very hard to comment on without expertise (dancing) makes it hard to give real dancing criticism as opposed to talking about their outfits or cracking a joke. but for AI, i think she will have a rapport with the kids that she can reference, she will be able to talk about how they are growing from week to week and, as others have said, commenting as an non-expert observer on singing and stage presence is easier (IMHO).

    at first i wasn’t thrilled, and i would still prefer three judges, but after watching her announcement and reading the interviews, her enthusiasm and love for the show and the contestants make me think it might be a good thing. she might be relatively useless for the first few weeks, but once she gets comfortable and feels like she has some authority to make judgments in addition to witty commentary, i think she will be a nice addition to the bunch.

  • http://myspace.com/girlgeek mj

    Honestly, I think you have a bias going in on Ellen,

    I hear this sort of statement all the time, that I’m biased against this one or that one, and I have no idea what that means. I like ellen, I just don’t think she’s right for Idol.

    I’d rather wait and see how she does on Idol than rehash SYTYCD.

    That’s the beauty of these posts–you can pick and choose what you’re interested in. And what you find boring, others may find fascinating. So, I can’t see that I’ll be letting up on the Ellen stuff, because she’s news right now.

  • SparklesATL

    I have loved Ellen for years. I’ve loved her wife Portia for years. I love their attitude toward their lifestyle rather than someone like Rosie.

    I also love my TiVo. It allows me to fast forward through all the judges comments except Kara and Simon not to mention the crappy singers.

  • http://twitter.com/cara_lee pj

    To me, she has potential to be an improvement over Paula because although I get the fact that Paula had recording industry experience, it really never showed up in her critiques. Even when she defended a contestant’s talent, she really gave no constructive feedback.

    I think Ellen will be able to be the empathetic judge, only funnier and coherent. I think she’ll take it more seriously than Paula, who has been phoning it in for years.

    Paula did improve a smidgen this past year, but she knew her contract was up for renewal. I just can’t mourn her loss when she didn’t take her easy ass job seriously.

    Plus, we all know Paula’s comments were scripted. I’m not sure why she’s now considered such a genuine, caring judge. Maybe its because she gives them her jewlry to pimp.

  • HotHotHot

    Pathetic. She should have been embarrassed about how bad she was! I can’t imagine why she would even consider doing this.

  • gingerly

    I didn’t watch this. I never watch judges on either SYTYCD or AI. I form my own opinions. In both cases, my opinions have more to do with what moves me than what is technically superior. Ultimately I only care about my opinion. I like it. It works for me. So, therefore, I am finding myself unconcerned about Paula leaving and Ellen replacing her. I just don’t give two shits. I’d rather see less (read no) judges. That would work perfectly for me. I just don’t understand why intelligent human beings need anybody to give them opinions.

  • oceana

    I like Ellen but have some misgivings about her doing Idol. Though she could surprise me and make it work. It sure is a surprising development and it will probably help ratings. She has a kind heart and that counts for a lot. Time will tell.

    She was a big fan of Simon’s but she started to notice that he was too mean and she didn’t like that. I give her that.

    I’m still worried about her being so pro-hiphop and r&b. Is there anyone on the panel who prefers rock, and folk-rock, and singer-songwriter? I just don’t need to see people like flo-rida on the show again.

  • http://twitter.com/cara_lee pj

    I’m still worried about her being so pro-hiphop and r&b. Is there anyone on the panel who prefers rock, and folk-rock, and singer-songwriter? I just don’t need to see people like flo-rida on the show again.

    She had Josiah on the show and he didn’t even make top 24. She also gave him a lot of expensive musical equipment. I think she can appreciate a variety of styles.

  • yinyang

    I’m a fan of Ellen’s, but couldn’t make it through the clip. I’m sure Ellen’s comments are a bit harder to get through on the clip, since it’s just her comments with nothing in between, (like dancing). I’ve never watched SYTYCD, so I didn’t see the comments in context. But…she wasn’t very funny, and said the same thing over and over. I could do that, for a lot less money.

    She may do better on Idol, but I’m beginning to miss Paula, based on the SYTYCD video.

    If the Idols got some valid comments, (you could improve your performance by doing this, or here is why that song was wrong for you, and how you can do better at choosing songs), then it would be better to have someone who knows the music industry.

    If the comments aren’t really helpful anyway, then I guess it doesn’t matter who the judge is, and the “judge” can say something useless like “You sing pretty”.

    But if the judges comments are useless, let’s have fewer judges, and MORE SINGING, and let the voters make the decision.

    I am new to AI as of last season, and didn’t pay attention to how things were done prior to Adam singing “Satisfaction”. Will Ellen be in a position of deciding who gets to be in the top 12?

  • SparklesATL

    Since when does “She’s a big fan of music” or “She’s really into music” qualify her to be a judge? Aren’t we all big fans of music?

    That just bugs.

  • http://twitter.com/cara_lee pj

    Since when does ‘She’s a big fan of music’  or ‘She’s really into music’  qualify her to be a judge? Aren’t we all big fans of music?

    That just bugs.

    If Randy, Kara, Paula or Simon actually gave constructive criticism, I would agree. As it stands, we have:

    “Yo, Dawg, for me, for you, that wasn’t good. Pitchy dude.”

    “Where is the artistry? We’re looking for a package artist”

    “You look beautiful tonight.”

    “I feel like I’m in night club somewhere in Transylvannia.”

    Soooo…. I’m looking for some new enthusiastic blood. If she’s too nice, whatevs. Pretty sure what I typed above is a representative sample of the so called “constructive critiques” from each judge.

  • fearbear

    If Randy, Kara, Paula or Simon actually gave constructive criticism, I would agree.

    I agree! Why is everybody now suddenly acting like the three judges actually give criticism with regards to singing. They don’t even give technical advice when it comes to singing, it’s always either “pitchy” or “incredible”… and even if Paula is a singer, it’s not like she’s Mariah Carey, she doesn’t know the technical aspect of singing as well. So it’s like, whatever. If Randy and Kara can be AI judges with the comments they make, anybody can!

  • Dr. Tracey

    I watched the video and it doesn’t change my mind, I think she’s a terrible idea.
    It’s more about time wasting for me than anything else, 4 judges is bad enough but a fourth judge that just tells jokes (lame ones) and doesn’t offer anything at all constructive is pointless imo.
    If you want to argue that Kara and Randy don’t offer anything constructive either then exactly! so why do we need another useless judge?
    I think Ellen should stick to her talk show but if Idol needs her to bring in viewers then either have her replace Ryan or make her a co-host. I can’t take her on the judges panel.

    Also, I personally find MJ’s site to be the most unbiased and fair site around, that’s the main reason I read it.

  • http://myspace.com/girlgeek mj

    If Ellen is going to be the comic relief on the panel, she’s going to have to brush up on her shtick. That SYTCD performance was painfully unfunny, imo.

    If she’s not going to be critiquing much, she’s at least got to be entertaining. She’s got a lot of work to do honing up the act between now and January.

  • Sassycatz

    I suppose if Oprah can pick the next President, then Ellen can pick the next American Idol.

  • http://twitter.com/cara_lee pj

    I’m not going discount the idea that Ellen will be critiquing. I’m not going to judge her before I see her in action on Idol. I also don’t know if she’ll be funny on Idol. I found her amusing on SYTYCD. Apparently, I’m the only one, but there you go. Mileage. I enjoy self-deprecating humor. She showed self-awareness that she wasn’t a dance expert. *shrugs*

    I also don’t see why she has to be funny and/or give a valid critique when Randy/Paula never delivered either.

    I suppose if Oprah can pick the next President, then Ellen can pick the next American Idol.


  • Circe

    Running out of time was a factor last season and sometimes four judges presented a problem. Succinct, constructive, and substantial are good qualities in a judge when there is a time constraint. I love Ellen, but wonder if she will be a good fit on AI.