'Idol' Judge to Dish Out Brutal Honesty

By | January 21, 2003 at 12:00 AM

If Simon Cowell hadn’t bitten his tongue, he would have hurled even more insults during the first “American Idol.”

The tart-tongued talent judge and record industry executive says he’ll be more brutal with fellow “American Idol” judges Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson in the series’ new season.

“As I reached the end of the first series, I sat there and I bit my tongue on the last two or three shows because I thought, ‘I’m going to work with these people. Maybe I should be nice to them,'” Cowell told AP Radio.

“I will never ever do that again. I regret the fact that I behaved that way because there were certain things I would’ve liked to have said on those last couple of shows and I didn’t,” he said.

Cowell is known for his vicious assessments of performers he doesn’t like, but he said he was more diplomatic than he should have been in at least one instance.

“One of the things I may have said is I would’ve told (contestant) Nikki McKibbin to go back to a strip club,” he said. “As I watched her I thought, ‘You are a better stripper than you are a singer.’ And I know that sounds rude, but that’s what I felt. I bit my tongue, and I wish I hadn’t.”

The second season of “American Idol” begins Tuesday night on Fox.