When American Idol first appeared in a cloud of smoke, trotting on cloven-feet all over pop culture and the leftover Who Wants To Be A Millionaire set, we knew it would only be a matter of time before the show began claiming certain viewers', contestants', and judges' body parts for its own nefarious purposes: Simon Cowell's spleen, Paula Abdul's mind, Ryan Seacrest's vocal cords (eventually replaced with perfectly modulated synthesizers), the Clay-Aiken-shaped hole in many female viewers' hearts.

But throughout the seven years American Idol has been on the air, snatching body parts in its gnarled, veiny hands, the show has also been systematically bargaining for a more celestial prize: human souls. So exactly how many souls has American Idol claimed? Apparently, enough for an entire book:

I know what you're thinking: how is an American Idol soul different than a Chocolate Lover's Soul or a Nurse's Soul? (Three words: Call in votes.)What is the precise topography of the American Idol Soul: its karaoke ridges, its cliffs of blandness, its trilling valleys? And can the American Idol Soul be saved?

Ugh. After watching this excruciating commercial for the book, probably not. People who find slow motion football tossing re-enactments staged by reality TV also-rans inspiring can't really be helped.

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