Season 8 Top 36 contestant, JuNot Joyner is pretty pissed. And he stopped by an Idol chat presented by AINow.tk to vent his anger. (check out the chat HERE.)
I don’t find his accusations very shocking, or new. But it’s sorta interesting to watch a contestant who feels like he got a raw deal hit back at the machine.
JuNot had no screen time during the audition phase, but impressed viewers and critics alike with a performance of “Hey There Delilah” during the Hollywood rounds.
He repeated “Delilah” for the semi-final round, with the judges giving him favorable remarks. But he did not advance against the likes of Lil Rounds (pimp spot!), Scott MacIntyre (backstory!) and Jorge Nunez (crying!).
The big controversy came when JuNot was passed over for the wildcard round. Fans and critics cried “robbed!” So did JuNot.
Junot’s complaints center around his belief that he’s been punished by TPTB for asking too many questions about his Idol contract. He claims Idol only gave him a few hours to go over the contract with a 19 appointed lawyer.
Yeah..we all had one lawyer and a few hours to go over the details of about 6 or 7 contracts, that we didn’t even get a copy of’ ¦and we didn’t get an opportunity to send to an outside attorney’ ¦and if we didn’t sign, we couldn’t be on the show… Some folks were like “just shutup and sign on the dotted line.” I know better than that.
I’ve heard these stories from other contestants. Trenyce from Season 2 (5th place, but she had some unsavory gossip leaked to the tabloids) and Season 5 winner, Taylor Hicks (who has a reputation for standing his ground–he refused to sing the first coronation song handed to him) both wanted their own lawyers, and rallied their fellow Idols to demand the same.
They didn’t like the fact that I wouldn’t sign “just anything” and that other contestants were coming asking me questions. So I think they ousted me the first chance they could get.
He also claims TPTB barred him from career opportunities, fellow Top 36ers were allowed to take on while under contract:
I already got gang banged by Idol. Certain things are supposed to go through Idol’s PR department. Needless to say, I had opportunities to come up. I called them and tried to play by “their” rules…and I couldn’t even get a return call. Then I found out that other Idols were allowed to participate in activities that the expressly prohibited me from….and that’s not me being bitter…once again that’s da truth!
JuNot says he likes former executive producer, Nigel Lythgoe, Ken Warwick, not so much:
Ken was the one who pulled me aside and basically told me to stop askin’ questions, shut up and “you’re not going to ruin my show”.
Also, lots of noise about the “fix” being in. What a bulletin! Not:
Welll…first of all, let me say that I’m grateful that I was on the show. Now that that’s out the way, I hated L.A. I met some cool folks but overall, it’s a fixed thing if I every saw one
The producers know who they want and they slant it to reflect that. They fix it in a way that makes you surprised but it’s still manipulated.
Think about it…ADAM, ADAM, ADAM then…Kris….SURPRISE SMITHCHES!!!!
Lots of blah blah about AI not being a talent show, but a reality show with writers. If JuNot didn’t realize that going in, he’s not a bright man. I mean, he’s been through this process twice (he made it to Hollywood Season 7). By his second go-round you’d think he’d have it figured out…
JuNot also suspects that the voting is rigged:
I don’t know about those [votes? –M]. They sit us down and tell us it’s fair blah..blah…but who knows. Do you think a billion dollar enterprise is subject to the whim of the public?
Nah. Highly manipulated, but not rigged. A rigged voting scandal could destroy the franchise. The producers won’t go there. If someone they don’t like wins, they can just blow them off (see: Hicks, Taylor) and promote the Idol they did want (See: Daughtry, Chris).
He also says he got in hot water for not allowing the producers to exploit his childhood growing up in the “hood.” I guess if he’d allowed it, they would have aired his audition?
An interesting read. Check it out here. You have to scroll past (or read) interviews with fellow Top 36ers Felicia Barton and Kendall Beard (neither spill anything juicy) to get to it.