'American Idol' Season 18: Lionel Richie teaches Nick Merico a lesson in humility and fans are all for it

23-year-old Nick Merico is a former Nickelodeon star who auditioned last season and made it to the Hollywood week with a golden ticket

                            'American Idol' Season 18: Lionel Richie teaches Nick Merico a lesson in humility and fans are all for it
Nick Merico (ABC/Eric McCandless)

Lionel Richie just pulled a Simon Cowell on Nick Merico and fans say the kid needed that. 

Nick Merico might be a “hunk-a-saurus” and easy on the eyes, but fans aren't letting that be an excuse for his obnoxious attitude as they affirmed that Lionel Richie was right to put him in his place and openly reveal he doesn't like him. 

'American Idol' Season 18 premiered on Sunday, February 16, night with a two-hour premiere featuring contestants who brought their best to the auditions hoping for a chance to be the next title winner. 

Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan returned as judges for the third season, along with host Ryan Seacrest. The author and 'Dancing With The Stars' winner Bobby Bones also returned as the in-house mentor. 

The premiere kicked off with a shout-out to Season 17 winner Laine Hardy and an even bigger shout out to runner-up Alejandro Aranda who was a game-changer because of him singing mostly original songs. Ever since 'American Idol' Season 17 came to an end, Alejandro aka ScaryPoolParty had performed in concerts and released his debut album titled 'Exit Form'. 

Coming to the episode at hand, while most contestants created a positive impression on fans after their auditions, there was one particular contestant who didn't sit too well not just with the fans but also with the judges because of his cockiness. 


23-year-old Nick is a former Nickelodeon star who auditioned last season and made it to the Hollywood week with a golden ticket. Due to unavoidable personal reasons, Nick had to back out and has now returned for a second chance. 

Even though he is back, the judges still hold the fact that he left midway against him. Performing his rendition of 'You Say' by Lauren Daigle, Nick somehow managed to impress the judges with his vocals despite his pitch issues. Luke Bryan called him a “carbon cutout of a teenybopper heartthrob with tremendous eyebrows." While it was an immediate yes from Katy and Luke, Lionel had something else to say to him. 

Lionel said, "We have a big problem, because, honestly, I don't like you. For some weird reason, you're not sitting well with me. I don't like your voice. I'm being honest. I'm being very honest. I don't like your attitude and I don't really think you're going to make it in Hollywood."

Lionel asked Nick how he feels now and a stunned Nick replied that he was really hurt. Lionel replied saying, "Good, that's exactly what I want you to feel like. Because I want you to understand what it feels like when people don't adore you." Katy also agreed with Lionel saying, Nick would come out better if he learns to be a little more humble. 

Nick Merico got Simon Cowelled by Lionel Richie. (ABC/Eric McCandless) NICK MERICO

Taking to Twitter post his performance fans agreed with Richie, saying he was right to call Nick out and put him in his place. "Whoa, Nick!!!! Watch your bad attitude!!!! That's Lionel Richie a living legend!!!! I think you'll be great!!!!" a fan wrote. Adding to that another said, "I agree with Lionel about Nick he’s super cocky #AmericanIdol." 

"I'm glad to see Katy and Lionel both putting Nick in his place. His arrogance is palpable and it's off putting. He thinks he's better than he is, too many people have told him hes cute and has a great voice and it shows. Hes decent but hes not all that," a fan wrote. While another said, "Lionel is right, this Nick guy is faking everything... his voice, his attitude, the look... it's all Grease-era too cool for school and its highly annoying." 

"Damn Lionel! U all SimonCowelled Nick! But I kinda get it. He is talented but comes across as insincere and cocky!" a fan wrote. Adding to that another said, "Lionel was pretty dead on serious with Nick but I didn’t like his attitude from the start, he got too cocky!" 

'American Idol' Season 18 airs every Sunday night only on ABC. Check your local listings for more information. 

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