Terry Morrow: Saving Jessica Sanchez on ‘American Idol’ didn’t sit well

In this April 11, 2012 photo released by Fox, Jessica Sanchez performs on the singing competition series 'American Idol,' in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Fox, Michael Becker)

In this April 11, 2012 photo released by Fox, Jessica Sanchez performs on the singing competition series "American Idol," in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Fox, Michael Becker)

Judging by the phone calls and emails you’ve sent in the past week, Knoxville viewers aren’t pleased with “American Idol” right now.

The last-minute judges’ save of contestant Jessica Sanchez on Thursday wasn’t fair, many of you say.

“Why should America vote if the judges can do that?” one reader asked in a phone message.

While it is a valid point, “Idol” has had its one-contestant “save” privilege in prior seasons and has never made it a secret that they can use it. Fans may not like it, but the judges do have the final save in this particular part of the competition.

Also, Sanchez has been praised as being worthy of winning the whole shebang this season. The judges figure she has the voice and the total look to be the next American Idol. And, frankly, the show could use some redemption after crowning over-the-top Scotty McCreery last year.

Even McCreery admits he doubted he would have won if Simon Cowell had been at the judges table.

Whether Knoxville market viewers will cast their own vote tonight with their remote — and that would be by not watching — is another matter altogether.

Let’s be honest: The likelihood of that is doubtful. Come on. You know you plan to watch (8 p.m. Wednesday, WTNZ, Channel 43).

“Idol” continues to be the most-watched reality series in the Knoxville market. Mind you, it is not the No. 1 series around here. That title belongs to “NCIS” (airing Tuesdays), followed by spin-off “NCIS: Los Angeles.”

“Dancing with the Stars” is a very close second to “Idol” in terms of viewership.

Meanwhile, NBC’s “The Voice” is a force no one expected to face. The competition has nearly the same audience as “Idol’s.”

The Los Angeles Times reports “The Voice,” on a national level, is drawing a younger audience than “Idol,” too.

Terry Morrow may be reached at 865-342-6445 or morrowt@knoxville.com.

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