"American Idol" is entering its 12th season on Fox and viewers have a lot to thank the reality series for.

"American Idol" has also given us an Oscar winner, a new generation of divas, the Kardashian family franchise -- yes, we can blame thank "Idol" for them -- and the ability to call a performance "a little pitchy."

Click through the slideshow below for the 12 things viewers can thank "American Idol" for.

"American Idol" Season 12 premieres on Wednesday, January 16 at 8 p.m. EST on Fox.

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  • Jennifer Hudson

    She didn't even make the "American Idol" Top 5 in Season 3 (Diana DeGarmo, George Huff, LaToya London, Jasmine Trias and eventual winner Fantasia Barrino had that honor), but Hudson went on to win an Oscar for her role in "Dreamgirls." Since then, Hudson has appeared in multiple films and will appear in the upcoming season of "Smash."

  • The Resurgence of Paula Abdul (And "Hey Paula")

    Before "American Idol," Paula Abdul was best known for dancing with a cartoon cat ... and then fading into obscurity. But when the show made its debut in 2002, suddenly, she was back on the A-list! With her new-found popularity came one glorious season of "Hey Paula," a Bravo reality series that took viewers into the everyday life of Abdul.

  • Carrie Underwood

    Another "Idol" success story, but this time in the music industry and she actually won. The crossover country diva took home the top prize of Season 4 and has gone on to earn accolades ever since (Grammy nomination included).

  • Ryan Seacrest

    Before "American Idol," you know, back when Ryan Seacrest wasn't a household name, the TV host had a handful of credits, including an episode of "Beverly Hills, 90210." Now, Seacrest is everywhere, from E! to NBC and his own radio show. He's also producing a boatload of reality shows such as ...

  • The Kardashians

    ... "Keeping Up With the Kardashians." Yes, we have Ryan Seacrest to thank for the Kardashian franchise on E! And because without "Idol" there's no Seacrest, we really have to thank the show for the first family of reality TV.

  • "The Voice" & Other Singing Shows

    While the formats are different -- blind auditions, teams, etc. -- there wouldn't be any "Voice" or "X Factor" in the US had it not been for "American Idol's" continued success. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, that depends on the type of TV viewer you are.

  • Kelly Clarkson

    The first winner of "American Idol" -- and one of the most successful -- Kelly Clarkson is reason enough to thank "Idol" after 12 years. Countless hit singles and music that transcends fandoms have made Clarkson a major force in the music industry.

  • "It Was A Little Pitchy, Dawg"

    Thanks to "American Idol," every day people now can criticize singers for being "a little pitchy," even if they have no musical talent at all. Additional use of the word "dawg" is up to you.

  • Man Cleavage

    Who knew shirts can be unbuttoned so much and stay on? Thanks, Simon Cowell.

  • Confidence

    Thanks to "American Idol" and the 562,693 audition episodes it airs per season, viewers can take solace in knowing they are in fact not the worst singers in the world.

  • Katharine McPhee

    The singer/actress came in second to Taylor Hicks in Season 5, but Katharine McPhee didn't go away quietly. After roles in "The House Bunny" and "Community," McPhee is currently starring in NBC's musical drama "Smash."

  • "From Justin to Kelly"

    Yup, thanks.

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