Someone had to pick up the slack.
Randy Jackson, while not entirely abandoning his laidback ways, has found himself in an unfamiliar position as auditions for the 10th season of American Idol get underway around the U.S.
And we're not just talking about his move from the far left chair to the far right.
Sources on the Idol set tell E! News that Randy has been, by far, the most critical of the judges. (The other two being, of course, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler, both of whom have promised to dish out plenty of tough love.)
"It's been like Randy has stepped up his game and is being more blunt and bottom line," an Idol insider says. "He's definitely not wishy-washy. He's, like, rebranded himself a little."
Even Ryan Seacrest has noticed his old pal's change of tune.
"He's the one to shut it down the most," the Idol host, who's presided over auditions in Milwaukee and East Rutherford, N.J., so far, said this morning on his KIIS-FM show.
If indeed the spirit of Simon Cowell is alive and well in that right-hand chair, we can't help thinking that's a good thing for everybody...minus the more delusional wannabes who thought Simon was their only obstacle to stardom.
—Additional reporting by Aly Weisman
Randy, J.Lo and Steven aren't the only stars being Snapped on Set these days.