Sat, 26 Jan 2013 21:30:00 GMT | By Emma Jones
American Idol History X

Season 1: The one with Kelly Clarkson



Kelly Clarkson is crowned the first American Idol winner (© FRED PROUSER/Reuters)
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  • The season one finale of American Idol (© FRED PROUSER/Reuters)
  • Kelly Clarkson is crowned the first American Idol winner (© FRED PROUSER/Reuters)
  • Season two finalists Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard (© LUCY NICHOLSON/Newscom/RTR)
  • Frenchie Davis on The Voice (© NBC)
  • Corey Clarke (© FilmMagic/Getty Images)
  • favourites Fantasia Barrino, LaToya London and Jennifer Hudson (© Getty Images/Getty Images)
  • Mario Vazquez (© Henry Lamb/BEI/Rex Features)
  • Katharine McPhee, Kellie Pickler, American Idol (© Getty Images/Getty Images)
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The troubled history of American Idol begins in the summer of 2002, when it premiered on Fox under the then-lengthier title American Idol: The Search for a Superstar. Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson were the original judges, with Ryan Seacrest and Brian Dunkleman standing in as the resident talking heads/hosts.

Not getting off to a smooth start, that inaugural season's first marks of disgrace appeared as allegations of vote rigging -- spurred by Nikki McKibbin outlasting favourite Tamyra Gray -- and revelations that 100 phone hackers had been able to place as many as 10,000 votes a night from a single phone line. Meanwhile, "A Moment Like This" crooner Kelly Clarkson was crowned Idol champ and is, still to this day, considered "the most successful contestant around the world".

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