Tx: 16th October 2010
Last week! Shit happened! Steve recapped it! Time actually WENT BACKWARDS as we listened to all 3,452 acts perform! Nicolo and FYD both got booted! Tonight, we get Lazy DECORATOR, Paije RICHARDSON and Aiden GRIMSHAW for the boys; John ADELEYE, Storm LEE, Mary BYRNE and Wagner NO-NAME for the over 28s; Rebecca FERGUSON, Cher LLOYD, Katie WAISSEL and Treyc COHEN for the girls; Belle AMIE, Diva FEVER and One DIRECTION for the groups. Oh yes, bitches, it's TIME TO FACE THE MUSIC!
Dermot informs us that tonight our contestants will be performing songs by their musical heroes, and then introduces the judges. You know who they are. They take their seats as Dermot reminds us to spend money downloading shit from iTunes.
First tonight, the over 28s, and Louis introduces Storm. Last week, Storm sulked a lot because people didn't recognise his genius. He began to sing when he was 4, and has travelled round the world to pursue music and become a better singer. Tough luck that didn't happen then, Storm LEE. He says that he once had a dream that Simon would tell him that he is one of the world's greatest male singers, and knows it will happen one day because his dreams always come true. Oh, Storm LEE. Are you on crack? [Given the story he's just related, I'm quite keen to see what evidence he has to support this statement. - Steve] He sings Born To Run astride a motorbike, and then marches on to the stage as leather-clad dancers cavort around him and the pyrotechnics. I actually think he's not bad as a front man for a rock band, but he's jigging around the stage like he has an unfortunate itch, and he's wobbling his chin like he's controlling his vibrato, but...you can't actually hear any vibrato. Or any sustained notes, come to that. Dannii says that Storm sings very well and she is now loving the presentation of the performance. Cheryl would like to see Storm "stand there and sing, if that's what you want to be judged on". Storm gives her a few epic bitchfaces. Simon tells Cheryl that she looks much less orange tonight. HAHAHAHA. Cheryl tells him his teeth look much whiter. Oh, judges. Simon then turns his attention to doing his job, and says that Storm is like a singing fly: "It's so crazy, I can't take it that seriously at the moment." When Simon says that it's not the best version of Born To Run he's ever heard, Storm pulls some more bitchfaces. Ah, grace and dignity, X-Factor contestants. Storm tells Dermot that he is ONLY TRYING TO ENTERTAIN (that's what Daphne and Celeste said when they got bottled off the stage at Reading 1998) and that nobody takes the piss out of Bono when he is trying to give energy to people. Hmm, I think they do.
Ooh, shall we have an ad break? I think so.
Last week, Treyc was good at singing. We see that she has always been good at singing since childhood. Remember this, it'll be important later. Vocal coach Yvie tells her the problem with being good in the first week is that you need to maintain that standard; Louis thinks she's peaked too soon. This week she's singing Purple Rain, and her second verse, where she rolls out her vocals properly, is really quite impressive. Louis says Treyc reminds him of Tina Turner. DRINK! Dannii says everyone has a soft spot for that song (I don't. I hate it) [I like it, but I hate how what was a moment of awesome for Ruth LORENZO has been monopolised into an X Factor standard - Rad] but she put her stamp on it. Simon says Treyc looks gorgeous (in what looks like a dress made of a duvet). Cheryl agrees with everyone, and says that Treyc is the least assuming person ever and her confidence is so little. And then Treyc pretends that she has no confidence because that is the narrative Cheryl wants for all her girls, because the voting public hates a confident woman, but the problem here is that she is good and she KNOWS she's good and she ADMITS she's good AND WE SAW IT FIVE MINUTES AGO. So stop trying to con us, stupid show. [Seriously. The whole "none of these people believe in themselves" rhetoric this year is beyond idiotic, especially when you consider that people with no self belief do not apply for televised talent shows which claim to be able to make you a superstar. - Steve]
Paije gender-changed Killing Me Softly last week for absolutely no reason, and it was the most amazing experience of his life. He has been performing since he was a kid, and at the age of 11 appears to have been one of the Greek chorus in Little Shop Of Horrors. This week, Yvie has told him that he needs to get his lung capacity going, so he's been running on a treadmill, wearing a Team Minogue t-shirt, and singing away. Paige is wearing something rejected by Madonna circa 1987 and singing a very fast version of If I Ain't Got You, while six dancers perform a routine from Cabaret behind him. And then there is a key change! Louis tells Paije to believe in his soul, he has the power to know, he's indestructible. Cheryl looks forward to seeing what he does in the weeks to come. Simon likens Paije to sunshine because he puts everyone in a good mood, and then slags off the choreography. Dannii, of course, thought the choreography worked. [Weirdly, Simon slagged Dannii off for the choreography, when surely that's NotLouis' responsibility? They still cut to NotLouis doing a bitchface anyway - Rad] Louis claps like a seal. Paije says he loves his dancers.
Simon introduces One Direction, as stupid girls scream in the audience. The boys were buzzing last week - "You will NEVER UNDERSTAND WHAT IT WAS LIKE," Zain tells us. Niall once played Oliver in Oliver! Zain has always sung and danced (but not dance routines, of course, as we know from boot camp). We see that in soundcheck, Harry nearly vomited with nerves. "If he can't really sing, there's no point him being here," says NotLouis. Oh, NotLouis, you could say that about so many people on this series. They're singing Kelly Clarkson's My Life Would Suck Without You. Hero? Really? I like her as much as the next person, but seriously? [I think it makes sense in context. Kelly won a show like this, after all - the implication being that anyone who wins a show like this can become a hero to millions. I mean, it's a flawed theory, but Kelly is one of the stronger examples. - Steve] The chorus sounds really good, but please tell me everyone else can hear what I can hear - THE BOYS ARE NOT SINGING THIS ALONE, THEY HAVE EXTENSIVE OFF-STAGE BACKING VOCALS. Yes? [Yes, and some of the boys are in tune, and some of them are painfully out - Rad] It becomes more evident when Zain tries to do a big wobbly melisma-laden cadenza and his MICROPHONE IS TURNED DOWN. Louis points out that the song was a weird choice. Dannii calls them heart-throbs. Ugh. Cheryl says she can't cope with how cute they are and she wants to hug them. "In a nice way," she adds. Simon calls them the most exciting pop band in the country today. If that's true, this is a sad, sad time. [Especially when they're just The Wanted but a bit younger and more Bieber-esque. Also: is this a slight on JLS? - Rad] [If the warped reality of this show is that Wan Direction are the most exciting band in the country, then I DEFINITELY have no problem with Kelly Clarkson as a musical hero. - Steve] Dermot asks Harry about vomiting. "I just felt sick a bit," he says. Then Simon interrupts once more to tell Louis off about criticising the song choice. Come ON, Dermot, sort this out! EARN YOUR CASH!
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Cheryl introduces her tribute act Cher. She says she never shut up as a child, and we see horrible footage of her fancying herself as a musical theatre diva and ripping the limited melody out of Defying Gravity. This week she is doing a mash-up of something theatrical and something that people want to listen to nowadays. She assures us that she likes to put her twist on things. She begins to sing the bridge from Hard-Knock Life, from the musical Annie, and it's TERRIBLE, she has no lower notes, and it becomes obvious that she can't do harmony either because she gets given a really odd line to sing. And then she breaks into the Jay-Z version of this song - and I don't really see how this is putting her own twist on it when it's basically what Jay-Z did in the first place [it was, and remains, Jay-Z's worst ever record, but then I hate the original song anyway. Hope I haven't committed a faux pas in admitting that, Carrie - Rad]. I really am beginning to hate Cher more than I hated Pirate Jessie Buckley. At least Pirate Jessie Buckley could actually sing as she lurched around the stage. Cher just sneers and swaggers around like a marionette puppet with her strings cut. Louis says the risk worked and she looks like a pop star. Dannii doesn't think the risk worked. Simon loved it. Cher raises her arm like it's vindication of everything ever. "I see the future here," [and it looks like late-90s rap singles. Still, that's a couple of decades' worth of progress for this show - Rad] says Simon, before adding, "Teach them well and let them lead the way." Cheryl says Cher is a pop star. Except not. Dermot tries to get Dannii and Cher to bitch at each other. They don't.
John is a nice man who sang a No 1 last week and unwittingly instigated the Northern v Southern Hemisphere war. His earliest memory of singing is making his sister leave her class at primary school to perform with him. This week he is singing an emotional song that keeps making him cry. And making Yvie cry as well. John says it would be the worst thing EVAH not to finish a song because he was too emotional. Never mind, John, if that happens, you can always sit on the steps. He's singing A Song For You (as performed by Nicolo in auditions), which I never think works when sung by sometone too young, but he's vocally very adept still. Dannii comments on his "natural" voice, and Cheryl says that part of the beauty of being a performer is to sing with emotion. Simon says that it was a fantastic song choice from Louis. Tell you something, guys, Louis really has done very well with the hand he's been dealt so far this series. [I know! And he can legitimately claim to be the best mentor after last week. What is the world coming to? - Rad]
Simon introduces Diva Fever, who say that last Saturday was the one they have been waiting for all their lives - "with the dancers behind us and disco lights." Way to be cliche, guys! Diva Fever tell us singing has always been a part of their lives. Craig says he was never going to be a bricklayer. No, really? This week Joe has been ill with laryngitis, perhaps in honour of the Claw's imminent arrival, and Craig has been mocking him while he steamed his face. Dannii says they need to forget about the Fever and bring all of the Diva to the competition. Cheryl and Simon apparently have no opinion on this. OH MY GOD BRIAN FRIEDMAN HAS WHEELED OUT THE TOPLESS BOYS IN SWIMMING TRUNKS. Alert! Alert! Diva Fever are all in white, with sunglasses tucked into their jackets. They do, sadly, look like two Andrew Ridgeleys. However, I do totally believe that Boney M are their musical idols as they're singing Gotta Go Home with its beach and summer holiday theme. And when they shout out names of divas - Barbra Streisand, Judy Garland etc - they end with "Louis Walsh" which is both funny and sickening. Dannii's Christmas party playlist is apparently getting longer and longer because this has been added to it too. Cheryl gets a bit of mocking in at NotLouis, which is always comedy. Simon says that is the kind of record the boys would have a hit with and he thinks it will be No 1 on Sunday. Really? [He means the Duck Sauce song 'Barbra Streisand', which is what they were performing, and looks like it's going to number one this week. Get me and my POP FACTS! Though how a one-record act can be a musical hero is anyone's guess - Rad] [I suspect the musical hero is Boney M. Who Duck Sauce have ripped off. - Carrie] And then Simon and Louis enter into their usual epic battle about whether or not Louis understands the concept of "fun" before Simon reveals that the concept behind the staging was "Miss Friedman's". NotLouis pulls a mock-horrified face. Am increasingly loving Friedman week by week. [So NotLouis is responsible for Diva Fever's staging, but Dannii is responsible for Paije's? Fuck off, Simon. Also, I think it took a few years to get NotLouis, but now I would really miss his staging. I think he saw the Peter Kay show the other year as something to aspire to and become better than rather than a parody - Rad]
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Cheryl introduces Rebecca. She says last week was amazing and she had to get into "a zone" before she went on stage. She can't remember not wanting to be a singer, and admits to being "a little show-off". Cheryl says Rebecca has an amazing song that suits her voice. NotLouis tells her to open her shoulders out. Rebecca reminds us that she is shy. Cheryl reminds us they are working on her confidence. YEAH WE GET IT. She is singing Feelin' Good. Bellowing Beverly sang this and wore a flower on her shoulder. And she might have bellowed but she did at least have power rather than a wobbly little fake vibrato in her upper register. [Am I alone in thinking that Rebecca has not managed a single good performance, ever? People seem to love her and I feel like the madman in the crowd trying to point out that the Emperor is, in fact, starkers. She's like the Kooky Monster, all affectations of what she thinks talent sounds like. - Steve] Louis says Rebecca has star quality and is also from Liverpool, which he loves. Apparently being from Liverpool is a guaranteed in with this year's judges. Dannii says that song is a risk because you can overdo it, but Rebecca made it fresh, and she suggests it could be on the James Bond soundrack. She then admits to a style crush on Rebecca - "you're good to go, girl." Siimon says this is a big week for Liverpool, because he is a HETEROSEXUAL MAN and KNOWS ABOUT SPORT (because this is a reference to the American takeover of Liverpool FC). Cheryl says she would buy Rebecca's album because she has a unique-sounding voice, and "you represent Liverpool and Liverpool women very, very well." Oh FUCK OFF. Rebecca tells Dermot that she is coming out of her shell more, and then says hello to a little boy who came to visit them this week. [And then Simon snips about her lipstick for ages for no real reason. Weirdo - Rad]
Dannii introduces serial killer Aiden and his lesbian hair. He says last week was awesome. His musical theatre debut was as Teen Angel in Grease, after which he was given singing lessons by his mum. HA. Backhanded compliment. He yodels his way through rehearsal, and Dannii admits that he's struggling with the stress of singing a song that he loves. Her advice? "Make it your own." Brilliant. Anyway, he sings...and I don't even recognise this. Serial killer fans will be pleased to note that he is still jittery and staring into space with mad eyes. OH, it's JEALOUS GUY. Who knew? He is veering all over the place and this is dreadful. Louis says he didn't think Aiden could better last week's song, but he walks on to stage and he sees the next big thing. Cheryl sees that he could be credible, but that was a shaky performance. Simon agrees with Cheryl but thinks Aiden could be brilliant. Lie. Dannii says the expression on Aiden's face gave away that he wasn't enjoying it. He's biting his lip and looks like he might cry. Dermot wanders on and presses Aiden to give his opinion - "It was a bit rubbish," is his conclusion, and then Aiden pretends to give a wobbly lip but I suspect that is just to cover up the fact that he's struggling not to sob. Still, manly reassuring hug from Dermot - that'll make it all better. [Awww. He was still better than One Direction - Rad]
Louis introduces Wagner, with a soft W. Again. Idiot. Wagner says last week was fantastic, but watching the footage back he thought he looked crazy. We then see photos of Wagner as a younger man. Gosh. I now have all sorts of conflicted weird feelings. There is much debate in rehearsal about whether Wagner knows what beat to come in on. Conclusion - no, he hasn't got a clue. He's singing Help Yourself, and I have NO IDEA WHAT HE IS WEARING. Is he actually...not wearing a shirt? This is not as fun as last week. Dannii screeches and then upsets everyone by asking Wagner if he sang it all in English. He apologises for his accent; she apologises for hers. Cheryl thinks the production was fantastic; "it was like being on Planet Venus in 1965," says Simon. And then he proceeds to ask, "Are you getting it on with Mary?" [Ugh, Simon has been so repellent this series. You know for a fact that if Dannii asked that there would have been questions in Parliament, but when Simon does it, apparently ir's fine. - Steve] Wagner says that Mary is a noble soul and a great friend, which Simon takes as a yes. Louis witters on about the laydeez loving Wagner. Wagner tells Dermot that he loves being on stage. Bless Wagner. Love him.
Louis says he likes the real Katie. We don't. She says Louis saved her dignity. I don't think that's true, is it? She says that she used to dance around to Kylie and sing to her Care Bears, and I am starting to think she is older than she is admitting if that is the case. She looks like Billy Idol today. Billy Idol if he were carved into the shape of a garden gnome, that is. I don't recognise this song either [it's I Would Rather Go Blind, an Etta James song, which I am guessing is the kind of stuff she was signed to do when she was Lola Fontaine, rather than the Sandi Thom stuff she did when she was Katie Vogel - Rad] and I don't understand ANY OF THE WORDS. Her upper register actually sounds pretty good, though. Louis starts poking the air with his biro and demands that people give Katie a second chance. Simon says there is something about Katie that he really likes. What? There is NOTHING TO LIKE.
The judges are late back to their seats, but Simon finally manages to introduce Belle Amie, about whom I had ENTIRELY FORGOTTEN. The girls chat about how they always sang and performed as kids. This week they love their song but they have been bickering who sings what bit and whether people get the same number of lines. Cheryl speaks from experience: "Sometimes, other people [Nadine] sound better on certain songs." The girls are singing You Really Got Me. Louis says they remind him of a young Girls Aloud. Dannii rips their styling to bits and the audience bray. Cheryl says she really enjoyed it and likes the look. Simon wants to thank everyone who voted for the girls last week because they were RIGHT TO DO SO, and then does a piece to camera about how GIRLS SHOULD VOTE FOR THE GIRLS BECAUSE IT IS GIRL POWER.
Louis introduces Mary who I thought was mediocre last week. MEDIOCRE MARY! She has always loved singing and has always performed but never have the confidence to sing properly before. Oh whatever. Dannii says Mary needs to keep it real. Vocal coach Yvie concurs. Mary frets about sounding cabaret, and says she will prove that she is a great recording artist. Oh WHATEVER. She's singing You Don't Have To Say You Love Me, and it's a competent vocal and she acts the lyrics, which is something. But it's nothing special. Even if she does have a noble soul. She finishes and does her tearful shaky hand thing again before sobbing as the audience continue to holler despite Dannii trying to start her feedback. Cheryl says she respects Mary as a WOMAN. [Cheryl to Aiden, earlier: "You know I would never patronise you." Cheryl to Mary: "I RESPECT YOU AS A WOMAN." Bint. - Steve] Simon says Mary is the reason why he never puts age limits on his shows. OH WHATEEEEEEEVER. Mary thanks the audience for their love. Oh, seriously for fuck's sake WHATEVER. Mary snogs Dermot. [Hee! I do quite like Mary, but in a 'coming in fifth place' and ending up in Blood Brothers kind of way, were she not destined to be an ambassador for bloody TESCO for the rest of her life, poor thing - Rad]
And finally we get to the Lazy Decorator. He says that when he was little he used to make a lot of noise, and when he was a teenager he started to get into Nirvana. He reminds us that he is a lazy fuck and music is the only thing he's ever stuck to. Meanwhile the vocal coach man is wearing a peroxide wig. Today Lazy Decorator is going to sing a high C. Everyone tells us what a risk it is. And then Lazy Decorator has the temerity to tell us - US, remember, the ones with jobs and stuff - that "you never get anywhere if you don't take risks." He sings Just The Way You Are, straining all the way through it and veering into falsetto much of the time. His smug little face at the end as he does a little mock bow BEGS FOR A SLAP. Louis says that will be a No 1 record [it was No 1. It's just that it was No. 1 for Bruno Mars. They seem to be doing a good job of selling other people's records this week - Rad] [It's either that or no one's told Louis that the iTUNES DOWNLOADS that this show is shilling are not chart eligible - Steve], and then asks Simon if it can be downloaded. "Why are you asking me?" says Simon, who's in a right mood [and who was the one crowing about all the songs being available to download in the pre-live shows publicity, so cram it, again, Simon - Rad]. Lazy Decorator continues to look smug. Simon loves the production, as does Lazy Decorator, evidently, as he smirks and nods.
Dermot declares the vote open. Phonelines are open overnight. We will find out which of these thoroughly average-at-best performers will get booted out tomorrow!