Straight Up, Paula Abdul Officially Joins 'X Factor'

Julie Ryan Evans

Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell After all the rumors and speculation, it's happened for real -- Paula Abdul is officially back at the judging table and has joined The X Factor. After more than two years apart from Simon Cowell, the two have reunited once again ... and it feels so good.

As ditzy and seemingly drunk she appeared at times on American Idol, there's just something about Paula that's endearing, encouraging, and just plain old kooky. She's taken plenty of hits and had her share of heartbreak, but it's good to see her repeatedly bounce back. Before the first taping of The X Factor today, she told reporters:

I am who I am. I don't try to be or become anyone else. I am passionate, I've mentored and sought out talent over the past 20+ years and this is exactly where I'm supposed to be.

Straight up, Paula!

The show's other judges include L.A. Reid and Cheryl Cole; and the hosts will be former Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger and new-found hottie, Steve Jones. Together they'll search for the next super singer or hit vocal group. While we're nearing the point of competition show overload, this one is shaping up to be a good one.

Any rumored bad blood between Simon and Paula will hopefully just add to the whole chemistry of the show. Pictures of them greeting each other before the show's taping today certainly look more than amicable. She told reporters, "It's awkward and wonderful at the same time."

In a statement, Simon said, "This show would never have been the same without Paula and I can't believe I am saying this, [but] I have missed her a lot, and I am thrilled she's on the show,."

Paula told TV Guide, however, that's she's scared too. "I am exhilarated. I am terrified... of Simon. I've really missed him, and I have no idea what to expect."

That's a bit ominous, and I'm sure not unintentional. It will be interesting to see how they play off the whole dynamic between the reunited duo on the show, but they'll certainly play it. The X Factor doesn't air until September, so we'll have to wait to see how it goes. I, for one, can't wait.

Are you glad to see Paula Abdul join The X Factor as a judge?

Image via Splash News

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