Evidently, even the words are different in “The Idol” multiverse. After episode four of “The Idol” debuted on June 25, fans were ripped away from the saga of Jocelyn’s chaotic music career at the sound of two unfamiliar words: “carte blanche.” In the scene, The Weeknd’s rattail-wearing lead, Tedros, brought a little additional flair to each syllable, pronouncing the word “cart-ay blanch-ay,” amusing viewers everywhere in the process. “Worth watching the idol for the weeknd’s inventive pronunciation of ‘carte blanche’ alone,” one Twitter user wrote. Another person agreed, tweeting that they were “forever haunted” by the creative elocution.
As amusing as the initial moment was to witness, many were quick to point out that the mix-up was more than likely a purposeful character choice made to emphasize Tedros’s false sense of grandeur. “I’m not on record as the biggest fan of THE IDOL, but pretending the mispronunciation of ‘carte blanche’ is a technical goof rather than a deliberate character-based joke is maybe not the angle you want to be taking,” one Twitter user wrote in defense. And to their point, even The Weeknd has made it abundantly clear that he is not his character.
“He’s despicable, a psychopath — why sugarcoat it?” The Weeknd said about Tedros in a June 14 Billboard interview published after episode two’s controversial sex scene. “We did that on purpose with his look, his outfits, his hair — this guy’s a douchebag,” he continued. “He cares so much about what he looks like, and he thinks he looks good. But then you see these weird moments of him alone — he rehearses, he’s calculated. And he needs to do that, or he has nothing, he’s pathetic. Which is true of a lot of people who are a fish out of water, put into these scenarios.”
But the question still remains: what exactly was cart-ay blanch-ay meant to prove? Does “The Idol” really want us to see Tedros in a pathetic light, the way they claim? And if so, why allow Tedros to give a brief lesson about the Latin origins of the word “family” in the very same episode? Perhaps some things are just better left unsaid.