By this point in the “American Idol” season, fans have a pretty good sense of who is going to vie for the title, and enterprising entrepreneurs are more than happy to satisfy their thirst for everything Gokey, Lambert, Iraheta and Allen with a raft of (mostly) home-brewed memorabilia honoring the leading contestants.
Laugh all you want at these weird and obsessive items, but if last year’s collection of “American Idol” ephemera is any indication, these entrepreneurs actually have a pretty good line on which finalists will come out on top.
Leading the eBay merch race this year is none other than Adam Lambert, who was the subject of more than 340 postings at press time on Monday. Along with the usual parade of mouse pads, watercolor paintings, photos, necklaces, pins, stickers, T-shirts, earrings, photo books, Lambert-emblazoned Nintendo DS cases, beer cozies, pillow cases, mirror compacts, dog tags, shower curtains, wall clocks, night lights, leather handbags, decks of cards, a DVD copy of his performance in “The Ten Commandments,” an iPhone skin and, of course, charm bracelets.
Some sellers even took the opportunity to try to unload their copies of Tears for Fears’ debut, The Hurting, attaching Lambert’s name tangentially through his lauded cover of a cover of the band’s “Mad World.” One of the strangest (and most grammatically challenged) is the post offering up a “Rare Adam Lambert No Boys Allowed Bedroom Floor Mat Rug,” which features a sultry picture of the singer and the words “Welcome to My Room. No Boys Allowed … Unless Your [sic] Adam Lambert.” Almost equally creepy/bizarre is the Adam Lambert Flowered Shadow Box Photo, with a gem stone-bedazzled stock photo of Lambert surrounded by seven velvet flowers in a frame.
The most original line of Lambert items is a series of Ken dolls repainted and styled to resemble various Lambert looks on the show, including a gold-jacketed “Ring of Fire” Lambert going for $199, a more generic “rocker” style doll for $99, a suave “Tracks of My Tears” edition in a gray suit ($99) and a remarkably lifelike “Born to be Wild” doll with unkempt hair, a black leather jacket, jeans and designer T-shirt (sold for $182).
Lagging way behind in second place is Danny Gokey, who is the focus of 42 items up for sale at press time, most of them photos, pins, iron-on transfers, mouse pads, dog tags, a few paintings and a series of “Got Danny?” shirts, hats and tote bags. Also for sale is a red, white and blue “Vote Danny Gokey” button ($10) reportedly being sold by a Gokey relative with all proceeds going to Sophia’s Heart Foundation, which was started in honor of Gokey’s late wife.
Just behind Gokey is nice-guy singer Kris Allen with 39 items, also mostly of the photo/ T-shirt/ keychain variety. There is a heart-shaped ladies charm watch, Allen’s very own one-of-a-kind restyled Ken doll, dressed in jeans, a vest, black tie and white button-down for just $79.99, and a “limited edition” photo mosaic made up of thousands of tiny images from the show, which comes with a lucky four-leaf clover “Idol” poker chip.
There are only 22 items up for sale related to 16-year-old sensation Allison Iraheta. The highlight is a one-of-a-kind 4 1/2 inch doll decked out in flaming red hair, new-wave dress and black nail polish.
Way down the list, Lil Rounds and Anoop Desai have about a dozen items each up for sale, including a light-switch cover, wristband, and homemade trading cards and art prints. Of course, there are also “Got Anoop?” and “Got Lil?” shirts, caps, infant onesies, tote bags and aprons.
Matt Giraud, who got the first-ever judges’ save last week, is, not surprisingly, at the bottom of the “Idol” swag food chain, with only about a dozen items being offered. The most interesting are the copies of his independently released 2006 Mind, Body & Soul CD, with prices ranging from $20 to $40.