‘American Idol’ Judges Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson to Return for Show’s 20th Season Reunion

by Shelby Scott
(Photo by ANDREAS BRANCH/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

The landmark 20th season of “American Idol” has been a memorable one. Current judges include country star Luke Bryan, pop artist Katy Perry, and the iconic Lionel Richie as they work to keep fans hooked with their latest talent choices. However, “American Idol” fans will be a little more thrilled than usual in the coming days. The May 2nd episode of “American Idol” promises to feature the return of iconic former judges Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson.

ET broke the news on Wednesday. In sharing the news with fans, the outlet included exclusive photos of Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson. One image shows the duo sandwiched in between our current judges. But, a second photo features the former judges alongside pop princess Katy Perry. Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson served as judges on the hit singing competition’s first eight seasons.

The competitive singing show got its start in 2002, with Abdul and Jackson leaving in 2009.

Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson might be at the forefront of “American Idol” icons headlining the series’ reunion episode. However, the outlet reports they won’t be the only alum returning for the landmark 20th season.

‘American Idol’ to Welcome Back a Host of Iconic Judges

As per the outlet, viewers should expect handfuls of the show’s alum to make an appearance before the season concludes. Some “American Idol” former judges appearing for the reunion include Ruben Studdard, Scotty McCreery, Jordin Sparks, David Cook, Lauren Alaina, Kris Allen, Maddie Poppe, Willie Spence, Caleb Lee Hutchinson, Grace Kinstler, and Laci Kaye Booth.

In speaking about his upcoming return to “American Idol,” Randy Jackson said, “The greatest [show] ever of any kind to me.” He continued, “I mean, nothing like it before, nothing like it after, and there’s a bunch to try and copy, and to duplicate and imitate, but yo, you never beat the OG.”

Since departing “American Idol” so many years ago, Randy Jackson has hosted Fox’s own music competition, “Name That Tune.”

‘American Idol’ Fans Demand One Artist be Brought Back Ahead of Season 20 Finale

Longtime fans of “American Idol” will surely love seeing appearances from some of their favorite former judges. However, currently, many of the singing show’s fans are demanding one young contestant be brought back to the show. And that’s rock singer Tristen Gresset.

During the Top 11 episode, our judges were forced to send one talented contestant home, and when it came between choosing Lady K or the 17-year-old rocker, they chose Lady K.

Obviously, when your favorite contestant gets sent home ahead of the finale, there’s bound to be upset viewers. However, many of the hit show’s audience members believe Gresset should return to the stage at least for one more performance. The most recent episode which saw the rocker head home experienced technical difficulties across streaming and cable platforms alike.

Essentially, when it came to Gresset’s turn to perform, the network went to commercial and many fans missed his performance.

“[T]echnical errors alone should bring [Gresset] back,” one “American Idol” fan wrote. Others shared similar sentiments in an angry Reddit thread.