10 'Idol' Replacement Judges for Simon Cowell
John Kubicek
John Kubicek
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
The fabric of American Idol unraveled yesterday with news that this will be Simon Cowell's final year judging.  However, FOX was quick to point out that Idol will continue, leaving one giant question: who will replace Simon?

Duplicating the Brit's cruel cockiness and sexual tension with host Ryan Seacrest will be impossible, but we have a few ideas on how American Idol might keep the show fresh with a brand new judge sitting in that seat when season 10 kicks off in 2011.  Here are our 10 best ideas:

Paula Abdul
Why not get the crazy lady back in the chair?  FOX isn't above unfiring someone (just ask Seth MacFarlane and everyone else at Family Guy).  So we suggest FOX puts some elephant tranquilizers in Paula's coffee and sneaks her back into the judging chair at Idol.  Odds are she won't even notice the difference.

Clay Aiken
Idol has created some true superstars, so why not get one of the famous alums to move behind the table and judge?  Aiken might not seem like the most obvious choice, but he still has legions of devoted fans and he knows a thing or two about spotting a diamond in the rough.

Ian "Dick" Dickson
If FOX wants a Simon clone, they have one in Australian Idol's Ian Dickson.  And as one of the 10 people who watched The Next Great American Band, I can assure you that Dicko is quite entertaining.

Diddy could be the most perfect candidate to fill that seat.  He's a music mogul, he has experience finding talented singers on reality TV (see: Making the Band) and he can crush a person's soul (see: I Want to Work for Diddy).

Josh Groban
If FOX wants to boost its female audience, book Groban, the man with the voice of an angel.  Sure, he might be a little too inspiration and uplifting, but hopefully a year as an Idol judge could toughen him up a bit.

Quincy Jones
Quincy Jones is arguably the most celebrated man in modern music. He has a record 79 Grammy nominations, as well as a number of Academy Award nominations for songs and scores. Jones is best known as the producer of Michael Jackson's Thriller, the best selling album of all-time, and he would add gravity and dignity to the Idol panel.

No One
American Idol got along perfectly fine for seven years with just three judges, so let Simon's leaving even things back out and let Ellen, Kara and Randy lead the show as a trio.

Rick Rubin
Few men have been more influential in music in the 20th century than Rick Rubin. Having started his career as the original DJ for the Beastie Boys, Rubin went on to found influential labels Def Jam Records and American Recording. In May 2007, Rubin was named co-head of Columbia Records and has helped the careers of bands as successful and varied as Run DMC, Dixie Chicks, and Slayer.  That's some major pedigree for Idol.

Quentin Tarantino
QT has been a guest judge on Idol before, and he was pretty great.  He has a real passion for this show, and he's just quirky enough to make some great TV.  Sure, he'd have to take some time off from making awesome movies, but if that meant we'd get a whole season of Quentin, we'll take that trade.

Andrew Lloyd Webber
Do you remember when Webber creepily asked David Cook to sing to him as if he were a teenage girl?  Imagine an entire season of that creepiness.  It would be like replacing Simon with his very strange uncle.

(Image courtesy of FOX)