We felt bad when Superstar USA
gave the boot to kicky contestant Nina Diva
last week. Although we'd sooner buy a CD of fingernails on a chalkboard than ever again hear her maul "Roxanne," the Orlando-based Korean-American entertainer truly believed she'd just blown her shot at being the next Britney
. And when we thought about her reaction upon learning that the show (continuing on WB tonight at 9 pm/ET) was an American Idol
parody designed to unearth the next William Hung
, not the next Ruben Studdard
, we felt even worse. So we checked out ninadiva.com to hear whether her confidence in her abilities was completely unfounded. (It isn't; Christina
, she ain't, but after a few cocktails, she could get us out on the dance floor.) Then we rang up the former NFL cheerleader to let her get in a few more
kicks — this time aimed at the reality competition that had invited us to delight in her humiliation.
TV Guide Online: How did you finally find out what the show was about?
Nina Diva: A producer gave me a call the day after the press release came out [announcing the concept]. He told me, "Nina, you're a great singer, but we had to have you on our show because we enjoyed your personality so much." I said, "You've got to be joking. This is a hoax?" I was let down and very sad. For two weeks, I mourned the situation. I make my living as a singer-dancer-actor, and it was almost a crisis moment. But then I decided to take the bull by the horns and try to make lemonade from lemons by parlaying this exposure into something better.
TVGO: What kind of feedback have you gotten from people on the street?
Diva: It's been really good. I don't know if people just feel bad about what happened or if they're having an affinity with my personality, but I went to the mall, and some teenagers asked for my autograph. Some other people were like, "Is there really going to be a Nina Diva doll?" I get the flipside, too, though. I've [checked out] the chatrooms — [the negative element] could be ex-boyfriends. Don't we all have that?
TVGO: Amen. So were you really going commando during your performance of "We Don't Need Another Hero"?
Diva: No, they put the star [over my crotch during the kick] to make it funny. I've been a legitimate, PG singer for my whole life, and hopefully, I'll remain a class-A PG girl. Maybe an R-girl, but I'll never do the Sharon Stone thing. Not that there's anything wrong with it.
TVGO: Having seen the show, how do you feel about your performances? All those Rockette moves!
Diva: I was most certainly encouraged to kick a lot. Especially at the audition, I was encouraged to go over the top, and like anyone who goes to an audition, I want the part! I want to get that $50,000 recording contract, so if somebody asks me to do something that's in my reality zone, sure, I can kick! When it comes to the singing, the only way to get a horrible performance out of me is to do what? Give me no sleep, give me a song that I've never sung before and have me sing it once. That's it. No rehearsal, no coaching; just stick me out cold at 7 am on a stage. I'm not even awake yet!
TVGO: Spoken like a true diva. Any last words?
Diva: In the end, I would want readers to know that yes, I was duped; yes, I was going for my dreams; and yes, I was let down. But now that I'm over the shock, I'm enjoying the attention, and I am hoping for something better.