Simon Cowell Receives Fond Farewell at 'Idol' Finale

by Andrew Scott, posted May 27th 2010 9:40AM
Simon CowellLee DeWyze may have won the season 9 crown last night, but it was departing judge Simon Cowell who ultimately stole the show.

From the beginning, 'Idol' made it clear that the two-hour-plus finale would be all about the notoriously candid judge, who announced at the beginning of this year that season 9 would be his last.

The show kicked off with a few pre-taped segments that chronicled Simon's best, worst and most infamous moments on the show. On tap to honor Simon were fellow-'Idol' cohorts Ryan Seacrest, Randy Jackson, Kara DioGuardi, Ellen DeGeneres and, yes, even Paula Abdul, who recalled everything from their panel feuds to their staged kiss during a previous finale.Simon CowellLee DeWyze may have won the season 9 crown last night, but it was departing judge Simon Cowell who ultimately stole the show.

From the beginning, 'Idol' made it clear that the two-hour-plus finale would be all about the notoriously candid judge, who announced at the beginning of this year that season 9 would be his last.

The show kicked off with a few pre-taped segments that chronicled Simon's best, worst and most infamous moments on the show. On tap to honor Simon were fellow-'Idol' cohorts Ryan Seacrest, Randy Jackson, Kara DioGuardi, Ellen DeGeneres and, yes, even Paula Abdul, who recalled everything from their panel feuds to their staged kiss during a previous finale.

Meanwhile, funnymen Dane Cook and Ricky Gervais also appeared to roast Cowell -- Cook through song, and Gervais in a taped message, in which he quipped that Simon had launched the careers of so many artists and only pocketed 80 percent of their profits.

Later in the show, in a surprise live appearance, Paula returned to the 'Idol' stage to give Simon a proper sendoff, complete with jokes that revealed the real reason she left the show after season 8. (Apparently, there was a baby waiting backstage, she quipped.)

Watch the clip below



She did save time for a few touching words, though, and even joined Simon on the judges panel to watch a special surprise tribute performance of 'Together We Are One' by Delta Goodrem that reunited former 'Idol' winners Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Hicks, Jordin Sparks and Kris Allen. (Season 7 winner David Cook was attending a charity event for cancer in Kansas City, he later confirmed.)

And if that wasn't enough 'Idol's for one performance, the winners were also joined by a number of finalists, ranging from Kimberly Caldwell, to David Archuleta to Justin Guarini, for a final, epic farewell.

Watch the clip below



Following the performance, Simon joined the 'Idol's on stage and, in a rare moment, admitted to being overwhelmed with emotion, adding that, yes, he would even miss host and faux-frenemy Ryan Seacrest.

But Simon didn't get off too easy: In addition to jokes from Paula, Gervais, Cook and others, 'Idol' brought back a number of audition round rejects, who were able to get one last shot at revenge.

Still, with a finale that ran until about 10:07PM (and which cut off Lee DeWyze's coronation song in the process), Simon was clearly the man of the two hours, and after a number of touching tributes it was impossible to deny the influence he's ultimately had on the show. Whether or not Lee DeWyze actually deserved to beat runner-up Crystal Bowersox is still open for debate. But in the case of Simon Cowell, at least, season 9 ended on a high note.

Check out our 9 reasons we'll miss Simon next season.

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Jean Hayes

No Simon....No Jean

January 18 2011 at 10:18 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
victorsukhenko

With Simon gone, there is no Idol, he was the glue that kept us watching! Without him, it's no fun. He knows talent and he told it like it was.....people just can't stand to hear the truth, SAD!! Our good times with this show are GONE!!

January 18 2011 at 9:20 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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