americas reality logos Howard Stern: Did 'America's Got Talent' reach out to the shock jock?Rumors that “American Idol” was considering Howard Stern as Simon Cowell’s replacement have mostly been laid to rest, but that doesn’t actually mean Stern’s statement was false.

What it could actually mean is that the preoccupation with Stern’s comments about FOX’s “karaoke contest” distracted us from the actual “America” we should have been focusing on.

On Friday, Feb. 5 Stern said on his radio show, “I was approached by a major TV network to take over a TV show and leave here and do that next year — and I did turn it down  … I’m not even sure if I want to be working. I’m waiting to see what happens.”

That was all it took to set the blogosphere ablaze with the idea that “American Idol” was courting Howard Stern. This caused Stern to make some carefully-worded comments on his radio show that could be construed as if he was approached by FOX. That, in turn, caused many media outlets to posture that Stern had “confirmed” the “Idol” rumors.

FOX has declined to comment, but a show insider told Zap2it, “Nobody’s been offered a job. We’re a week into season nine and the process to find a replacement has just begun. It’s going to be a very thorough process.”

Since FOX hasn’t officially squashed the Stern rumors, the Parents Television Council has come out swinging with a statement expressing outrage over even the remote possibility “Idol’ would hire Stern.

“Be it known that if the reports about Mr. Stern prove to be true, we will no longer watch the program; we will share our concern with our friends, family and others in our social circle; and we will contact every sponsor and urge them to consider whether they should associate their corporate image with a man who talks about ‘getting little boys hard,'” warns the PTC in the statement.

It’s clear the PTC is on the lookout here. But let’s revisit Stern’s original remarks on his radio show that ignited this whole mess.

So hypothetically if Stern was telling the truth about a “major TV network” courting him then one can assume he was referring to the big five: ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and The CW.

Reality TV is the most likely place he would go and we’re pretty sure it’s not “Idol,” which leaves “The Amazing Race,” “Big Brother,” “Survivor” and “The Bachelor.” Those shows don’t have judges, they have hosts. We can’t imagine Howard Stern as a host for a reality show because he’s way too opinionated.

“America’s Next Top Model” has a judges panel, but we can’t see the king of shock-jock talk radio A) judging fashion models or B) working with Tyra Banks. Do we remember how well ex-judge Janice Dickinson’s outspoken, Stern-esque personality went over with Miss Banks? Sort of like a lead balloon.

However, there’s one show left which has a judging panel that critiques variety acts. And that’s NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” a.k.a. the summer version of “American Idol.” It recently had to replace David Hasselhoff as a judge. Just because they went with Howie Mandel doesn’t mean Mandel was the only person asked.

Zap2it contacted Fremantle Media, which produces “AGT,” and NBC to inquire if Howard Stern was approached for the show but both had no comment.

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Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."