'American Idol' Season 12 Premiere, Part 1 Recap: Nicki vs. Mariah

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Fox hit show returns with new judges including Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban...which diva ruled night one?

American Idol
was all new tonight and that meant a whole new set of judges, too! Season 12 of Fox's hit talent show started off with a montage of all their big past winners, but we know it's really all about the judges.

The judge bios kicked off in order of smallest to biggest divas: first Keith Urban's, then Nicki Minaj's, with Mariah Carey's saved for last. Mariah also gets to say the final word of their catchphrase "This is American Idol." Score two points for Mimi.

Auditions kick off in NYC, and Nicki brings a drum major hat to the table with her, prompting Mariah to complain no props are allowed, but they're interrupted when the first contestant named Mike makes a big entrance. He fails to impress the judges, and Nicki calls Mariah a bitch.

Things are off to a great start between the girls, clearly. But Mariah's ego gets stroked when contestant Tennat reveals she is an alumni of Camp Mariah (who knew that existed?). She gets the OK from all the judges.

Justin Bieber wannabe James Bae doesn't get a yes from anyone, but Nicki kindly encourages him for giving it a shot and even rewards him with a kiss. During another truly awful performance, Nicki quips, "Your range is better than Mariah's!".

Mariah tries to discourage Nicki from using her British accent before imitating it herself.

The final verdict? Tonight's diva award goes to Nicki. She got in some serious digs at Mimi, worked a foreign accent and still came through as genuinely kind to some contestants.

We'll have to tune in tomorrow to see if Mimi bares her claws in the second part of the premiere!


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