Ellen DeGeneres Confirmed as Fourth American Idol Judge

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Ellen DeGeneres is one of the funniest people alive.

But does she know a lick about singing? We'll soon find out, as the talk show host has been named the permanent fourth judge on American Idol.

Said show creator and executive producer Simon Fuller:

"I could not be more excited to have Ellen join the American Idol family. Ellen has been a fan of the show for many years, and her love of music and understanding of the American public will bring a unique human touch to our judging panel. I can't wait for this next season to begin."

Ellen DeGeneres

Over the initial round of auditions, guest judges such as Mary J. Blige and Victoria Beckham have occupied the seat next to Simon, Randy and Kara. But that will change once the show moves to Hollywood.

DeGeneres has been known to analyze American Idol in depth each week on her talk show (which she'll continue to host). But will her presence on the panel add fuel to critics' fire that the series is anythng but a singing competition?

"Hopefully I’m the people’s point of view because I’m just like you. I sit at home and I watch it," Ellen said. "I’m not looking at it in a critical way from the producer’s mind. I’m looking at it as a person who is going to buy the music and is going to relate to that person. ”

We'll see how well that works out.

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.