American Idol judge Katy Perry isn’t winning any popularity contests with her behavior on the set of the singing competition. The singer, known for her hit songs “Firework” and “Roar,” has caused an uproar by openly teasing male contestants with sexual innuendo and even kissing one surprised contestant who thought he was only going to receive a kiss on the cheek. Her antics have included putting 26-year-old William Casanova’s Hollywood ticket between her toes for him to retrieve and suggesting that 27-year-old construction worker Trevor Holmes hang out with her in Los Angeles if he didn’t make it to Hollywood as well as telling him he was so hot. She even made a suggestive remark about Holmes’ “tools.” Twitter has taken notice of the award-winning artist’s onscreen flirtations, and plenty of people aren’t happy.
While some Twitter posters mention their disgust, one even went so far as to create a hashtag #Katysorapey while another compared watching Katy Perry to watching a dog in heat. When Perry told 18-year-old contestant Johnny Bryant “Eighteen-year-old girls would eat this up if a 32-year-old cougar would eat it up,”it prompted fellow judge Lionel Richie to ask her to stop flirting.
USA Today‘s Kelly Lawler went so far as to say that Perry was dragging American Idol down and called the singer the show’s “biggest and most expensive impediment.” Fellow American Idol judge Luke Bryan defended Perry’s actions when she kissed Benjamin Glaze on the lips by saying the incident had been blown out of proportion and that he had to “back Katy.” Still, the popular singer is taking a lot of heat from social media with some people and advocates of the #MeToo movement even accusing her of using her position on American Idol to assault young men.
As for Perry, she hasn’t addressed the backlash, and with 109 million followers on Twitter, she focuses on tweeting encouragement to American Idol contestants. Neither American Idol producers nor the network have spoken out about the controversy caused by Perry’s consistent behavior even though various outlets such as the Washington Post and Newsweek have criticized Perry’s actions. With American Idol‘s ratings dropping each week, viewers and some media outlets contend Perry is to blame and suggest that if Perry was a man, this behavior would not be tolerated.