New season of 'American Idol' starts with a bang!

Luke Bryan Katy Perry and Lionel Richie

The Nielsen company said Monday that the 10.34 million who watched the return of "American Idol" represented ABC's biggest Sunday night audience with regular series programming since 2012.

Season two finalist and CT resident Kimberley Locke gives us a whole recap.

Katy called her "a spectacular songwriter", Luke noted she seems "brilliant beyond her years", and Lionel complimented her by saying it was as if a Martian had landed on earth.

"Gone are the embarrassingly bad auditions that would go viral on Fox's American Idol and increased are the inspirational stories the Disney-owned network is hoping will go viral in a more positive way", Chris Harnick of E! Turner started with a little Britney Spears and then performed an original song. Katy Perry put her signature on Harper's "dream board", annotating that her "American Idol" audition had been realized with gold.

When the series initially went off the air in 2016, I published an op-ed in which I discussed what American Idol has meant to me over the years.


But who I'm going with is 16-year-old Alyssa Raghu, who wowed everyone with her cover of Ariana Grande and Nathan Sykes' "Almost is Never Enough".

Grace Walker, a 15-year-old hostess from San Juan Capistrano, CA; Sardor Milano, a 26-year-old supermarket employee from Orlando, FL; and Nico Bones, a 22-year-old skate-shop employee from Long Beach, CA, did not receive golden tickets to Hollywood.

"Once you're in front of the judges, it is very quick". He admits to the judges that he's never kissed a girl, and gets knocked for a loop when Perry tricks him into a kiss on the lips.

"I know, wig, I feel that already", Perry said.

"You're so hot", Katy said. The GRAMMY victor got up from the judge's table and walked over to Francisco to give him a hug. "Come here, Benjamin. Come here right now!" she said. The judges believe she has the vocal chops, but want her to prepare herself for the rigors and disappointments of showbiz. "We don't have to convince ourselves that this sounds good - it just does", Perry says. He strums his battered guitar and sings a star-making rendition of "Unaware" by Allen Stone.

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