How Did Kris Allen Win ‘American Idol?’

Reader responses give hints.

We may never know the exact margin of Kris Allen’s win over Adam Lambert on “American Idol,” but on the morning after the surprise victory, what we do know is that fans of the chummy singers remain bitterly divided over the result.

Based on the many responses we received to our story about the finale, the Glamberts are either a) glad Adam lost so he doesn’t have to release “No Boundaries” as a single, b) miffed that his “otherness” might have turned some voters off, c) adamant that the competition ended up being about popularity more than singing (have they been paying any attention these last seven years?), or d) all of the above.

But how did Allen pull it off? How did the unassuming 23-year old married college student from tiny Conway, Arkansas, beat the ready-for-primetime 27-year-old theatrical rocker and judges’ season-long favorite? (Some comments have been edited for clarity.)

“Kris did not win because America voted for the one with the better voice,” wrote xThexFurxIMMERx. “He won because America voted for the ‘cuter’ one, the ‘normal’ one, and because they are homophobic. If anyone voted for Kris, they didn’t care to listen to Adam’s vocals, because if they did, they would have seen how more superior and broad his range is than Kris.”

Though only 1 million votes reportedly separated the two singers last week, it appears from the nearly 100 comments that the Glamberts compose the overwhelming majority of online advocates for their choice.

And some of you were really, really fired up about Lambert’s loss, including rabid poster Ebova, who huffed, “I watched this show only because of ADAM and will never watch it again … whatever is the name of the guy who ‘supposedly won’ this karaoke show — it is obvious that ADAM IS THE BEST EVER AND FOREVER … while that other guy will be forgotten before you know it.”

Many of you also wished both men well in their respective careers, but Yoyoball suggested that one reason Lambert may have come in second was because he was just so unusual. “Adam is the true artist and performer,” ‘ball wrote, “and unfortunately that’s why the majority of [the] population is having a difficult time accepting him.” But then, ‘ball also went on to compare Lambert to Leonardo da Vinci, Galileo and Vincent van Gogh, suggesting that the glammy singer was simply “way beyond his time.”

Though Lambert has made a point of not responding to queries about his sexuality other than to say “I know who I am,” Heath was convinced the androgynous singer lost because of homophobia. “I guess we’re overpopulated with retarded little girls who vote for a boy they think is cute, and homophobic wastes of space who will vote if he’s not gay, regardless of his bland, mediocre singing skills,” he wrote.

Forget all that, Snookie wrote, the real reason, based on an allegedly close observation of voting patterns, was simple. “Young voters, especially girls, like cute faces like Allen’s and will vote for him regardless of his singing and the judges’ assessment,” wrote Snookie. “As they represent a significant proportion of voters that is large enough to determine the outcome of the competition, Allen naturally will win the competition.”

There were the usual fair share of conspiracy theorists who swear the show is rigged, and that despite the nearly 100 million votes, “Idol” producers made the ultimate decision. Pac4lyfe begged to differ, expressing joy at Allen’s win and explaining it this way: “We have had our share of rockers on ‘American Idol.’ It was time to switch it up. I like Kris’ mellow, soulful style over Adam’s anyways. Many assume because Kris doesn’t shout through the whole song, that he is not as good as Adam. Look at Jack Johnson, Gavin DeGraw, etc. They are just as talented.”

There were many reasons that Allen won, but Yokwe_123 said it came down to a simple equation. “Even though stupid young girls around the country prefers cute guys that can kinda sing over talented dudes like Adam, it really shows what American girls are like,” Yokwe wrote. “Adam is different like how he walks and his choice of clothes … [but] about four weeks ago that I started listening with my ears and not my eyes, it was then that I realized even though I don’t like this dude, I must say that his vocal ranges are outta this world and there was not one person on the show that can compete with such great talent.”

Despite that talent, though, Yokwe suspected that “America’s young teenage girls” were one deciding factor in Allen’s win, but that the other might have something to do plain old dollars and cents and that record companies prefer a singer they know they can sell to those young girls. (We kinda doubt that big record label bosses were burning up the phone lines, but a good theory, anyway.)

Forget the wild conspiracy theories, the alleged fixes and the stealth homophobia, Nicki wrote. The answer to Allen’s win is way simpler than all that mumbo jumbo. “People are … saying he just won because Adam is gay and too many people don’t like him because of it. I’m sorry but I’m sure that I speak for almost everyone that it has nothing to do with who’s and who’s not. It’s a fricking singing competition not a sexual orientation competition or whatever u wanna call it. If Kris were gay I still would have voted for him and wanted him to win. He’s the better singer.”

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Often guilty, never convicted. Serving 15 years to life at MTV News.