American Idol is just a stepping stone, granted a pretty significant one because of the guaranteed contract and $$, however, just a stepping stone. All of these kids will have to work to make it. For most, our idea of success and theirs may not line up in the least. That's okay. I think too many think that making it on idol SHOULD translate into a hugely successful music career. While that would be nice, I really think that it's a huge step into the music scene but nothing more. Let's face it, Adam Lambert is hugely popular amoung the idol faithful and, I'm sure, with many who weren't idol faithful. The guy has HUGE talent, but he's only two seasons away from his win. How many albums does that make? His long term success is not guaranteed. It is tough being a long term success in this business and perhaps we get so focused on what we see as success that we miss the big picture for these contestants. Trends change. Time tells.