13 for '13: TV We're Most Excited About in 2013
2. American Idol
New "American Idol" judges (Season 12 premieres January 16 on Fox)
J. Lo was boring, Steven Tyler was loopy, and the talent has been largely uninspiring, so it's no surprise "AI" has experienced an ever-increasing ratings drop-off. But while we were inclined to write the show off, a new trio of judges has managed to woo us into thinking -- well, hoping -- "American Idol" has a shot at redeeming itself for Season 12. At last, this line-up of judges offers an experienced vet (Mariah Carey) who understands making music and maneuvering the business, and isn't afraid to share her opinions; a currently charting pop star (Nicki Minaj) who also isn't shy about letting people know what she's thinking; and a superstar country singer and songwriter (Keith Urban) who'll weigh in on a genre that has always produced some top "AI" contenders. Original judge Randy Jackson's returning, too, and while he's been phoning it in for seasons, there's no question he's capable of insightful feedback for the wannabes. Here's hoping his new cohorts inspire him to step up his game and ditch those tired old clichés he's become too comfortable spouting.