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Published: Monday, 2/19/2007

Why these guys?

American Idol has the unique ability to turn an average person from Nowheresville, USA, into a superstar virtually overnight.

The five Idols who have been crowned thus far have at least one thing in common: They have talent.

We all know American Idol is a singing contest. How then, do we explain the overnight fame of Jonathan Jayne and Kenneth Briggs?

Die-hard American Idol fans will remember the two who became fast friends while waiting in line to audition for the show. While the pair obviously had no place in Hollywood, the two are now mini celebrities simply because sullen American Idol judge Simon Cowell was mean to them. (He told Kenneth that he looked like a bush baby and made a snarky comment about Jonathan s weight, asking him if he had borrowed his trousers from fellow Idol judge Randy Jackson.)

So why them? Simon was a jerk to most contestants the guys more so than the girls. (Did anyone else notice that he called most girls sweetheart and just insulted the guys left and right?) Why weren t any of the other tens of thousands of guys who auditioned asked to be on the Today Show or Jimmy Kimmel Live, like Kenneth and Jonathan were? What about all the girls who auditioned?

As far as I can recall, out of all the contestants who failed to make it to Hollywood since the show's inception, Kenneth and Jonathan are the second and third contestants to have achieved noticeable fame just by having an awful audition.

But so far, they don t hold a candle to William Hung.

Who could forget William Hung? Season 3 fans were first-hand witnesses for his awful, yet spirited rendition of She Bangs, complete with over-the-top dance moves.

Since his debut on national TV, Hung has released several albums. That s right, they re albums in which he is SINGING. I don t know about anybody else, but I would never even consider spending my hard-earned cash on a CD to listen to someone who sounds as melodious as two alley cats fighting over the last chicken bone.

Though Kenneth and Jonathan are obviously giddy with their newfound fame, it s just kinda silly that their status stems from someone saying something mean to them.

My guess is that the hype surrounding these two will soon be over until the show s always-spectacular season finale in which the two will undoubtedly make an appearance maybe with David Hasselhoff. Afterward, though, they ll most likely fade back into the old routines that they were used to before the powerhouse that is American Idol let them enjoy an extended 15 minutes of fame.

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