Archive for the ‘X Factor’ Category

Now that good ol’ (OK, bad ol’) Simon Cowell has taken his X Factor juggernaut Stateside, and the Australian and UK version keep on trucking, the interweb world is literally swimming in X Factor. Which is not a problem over here in Big Cheese land. Not at all! Especially not now that things are rolling, the live shows have well and truly kicked off, and the lamer acts (and sometimes not so lame ones) are dropping like flies.

In fact, now we’re only a couple of months away from Christmas, when the steam train that is the X Factor thunders towards its crescendo – like the hopped up locomotive at the end of Back to the Future 3, pyrotechnics exploding like the roaring engine, ballads and big notes spewing from contestants mouths like steam from the chimney – I can’t get enough! So who are our favourites? Who have we been sad to see go? What have we enjoyed so far in all three seasons of our favourite guilty pleasure?

Let’s start in Australia, where they’re down to the final 5.

 

REECE MASTIN

 

My favourite (and the contestant I think most deserves to win) is the fabulous Reece. He has had a shaky couple of weeks, but (much to my relief) he has held on. With the right song choices (come on Guy) he has the potential and the talent to win the whole damn thing.

 

JOHNNY RUFFO

 

Controversial, I know, but I just can’t help liking Johnny. Sure, he’s not the best singer, but neither are half the pop stars on the charts. I mean, have you heard Cheryl Cole sing?? But you’ve gotta admit, the guy is gorgeous, and boy can he move! Plus, he actually sang great last weekend. I hope Johnny makes it right to the end!

 

THREE WISHEZ

 

I have been rooting for these guys since the start, because I genuinely can see them having a career. It hasn’t always gelled for me, but there is definitely a lot of potential there, and every week I hope they smash it.

Now, over to the UK, where things have been going all pear shaped! Frankie knocked out for boasting about using cocaine, The Risk eliminated unceremoniously last week (which actually really disappointed me, and if it weren’t for Marcus I really wouldn’t have any interest in the show at all). Kelly “sick”, Louis destroying the credibility of his acts (as usual), Gary hating on fun, Tulisa saying “blew me out of the water” every chance she gets – it’s been a veritable whirlwind. Ok, Misha is good. And I don’t mind Little Mix. But with Janet and Craig vying for most bland act ever, how do we feel about the race to the finals? Who do we want to win?

 

MARCUS COLLINS

 

I love Marcus. Mostly cos he’s lovely. And a total cutie. And he always puts on a good show. And he’s getting better every week. But I do wonder if he’s doing so well because the other acts are mostly LAME! I want him to do a big ballad and prove he can really sing. Make me feel it, Marcus!

 

THE RISK

 

Ok, Ok… I know they’ve gone. But I miss them already. And I LOVED their performance last week. I’ll miss their cute cheeky faces, and little dance moves. I’ll miss Derry trying to chat up every female pop star he could. Now Frankie is out, bring back The Risk! I don’t care how many times their line up changes. As long as Andy, Derry and Charlie are there, I’ll be happy.

And now, over to the States! They are a bit further back in proceedings there, with only two live shows, and one live vote under their belts. And it’s already gone awry! The AMAZING Stereo Hogzz in the bottom 2! Luckily they survived the chop to be awesome another day. I only have three favourites in the US version. Who are yours?

 

STEREO HOGZZ

 

A little bit of Motown, and a little bit of current,edginess. Smooth moves, great voices. What’s not to like? Why were they in the bottom 2 America?! Vote for the Hogzz. The show will be boring without them. You don’t just want to watch Stacey Francis and Melanie Amaro have a ballad-off, do you? BORING!

 

MARCUS CANTY

 

The other Marcus. I totally love him. Of course, it didn’t hurt that he did Bobby Brown last week, and that he danced and sang his little booty off. Go Marcus!  I look forward to seeing what you do next this week.

 

ASTRO

 

Ok, so this is a late edition to this post, because Astro totally smashed it on tonight’s show! He’s always been good, but now I think he totally deserves to be in this list. He’s a real talent.

So, these are my favourites, and the acts I look forward to seeing every week. What are yours?

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We’re at the pointy end of this year’s X Factor, with only four acts, and one performance show to go – otherwise knows as The Final!! Apparently it’s going to be a four hour extravaganza, as this year there are 4 acts instead of 3. Which means a extra guest celebrity duet, an extra epic cheesy ballad, and four versions of the winners’ song.

So who’s going to take it out this year? Firstly, let’s discount Cher. Bottom two last week, and just not the cup of tea of enough people to get her over the line. There is only so far a rap bit in the middle can get you, and sometimes her hair is so big that I think it will snap her little neck like a twig.

Then there are Rebecca and Matt. Rebecca Ferguson is the favourite of all the people who think they are above the X Factor, but watch it anyway. They all think she’s amazing. Plus she’s got the single mum backstory thing, and she seems genuinely lovely. But frankly, if you ask me, I find her a little dull. Sure, she’s got a voice on her, but she just stands there, occasionally raising her hands. Like a robot. A pretty, stylish robot, but animatronic none-the-less. To me, I just don’t think all the ballads and “doing it for my kids” will be enough to beat the “hot boy factor” she is up against.

First, Matt Cardle, who Mums and daughters around the UK are swooning for, and apparently sneaking into the utility cupboard to secretly vote for. And I must admit, I really like Matt. I had a massive crush on him at boot camp, and I think he is interesting and talented, and seems like a genuinely nice bloke. I would definitely sleep with him. But can he win it? I think he’ll be in the final two, and there will be a tense moment when we all think he might actually take the prize, but I just don’t think he’ll quite get there.

Why? Because the evil genius that is Simon Cowell has created the ultimate X Factor winning weapon. Who mostly watches and votes for the X Factor? Teenage girls. Who starts online fan clubs, stands outside the X Factor house, and buys tickets to the X Factor tour. Teenage girls. So Cowell scoured the 1000s of auditionees, and picked the 5 cutest teenage boys I think I have ever seen. And for some reason, they look really good together, and can sing well enough that there is almost no way that they won’t win this thing.

Think about it. Lloyd Daniels got to the top 5 and he could hardly sing, “Eggnogg” Quigg got to third, despite Ireland not being allowed to vote. And the fact his head looked a bit like a potato. JLS almost got there, and have gone on to have a massive career. Cowell has taken all these lessons, and created a pop marketers dream.

But I think the real thing about One Direction, is that it’s not just teenage girls who love them. I am about 13 years older than they are, and against all my better judgement, I adore them! I watch the X Factor from back in Australia now, and when I don’t get up early and stream it live, I watch the videos individually on Youtube. So it has been very easy for me to establish my preferences – and I always watch One Direction first. Sometimes twice.

And let’s be honest. They might not be the most talented singers in the world, but they’re not terrible. They’re always in tune, and probably vocally stronger than any other group that has been on the show. Cos remember, Aston took the lead vocals for JLS in the end, but One Direction share it around. They’re lucky to have Liam Payne – who I was sad to see not get a chance as a solo performer, after his amazing audition – who always starts them off confidently, but now Harry Styles is really hitting his stride as the wailing heartthrob, and Zayn Malik is taking his place as the smooth, moody, husky voiced one. I think it’s only Louis Tomlinson who hasn’t had a solo (Niall Horan has had a couple, and fills the blonde quota), but watch any of their video diaries (and I’m ashamed to say I have) and you can tell why he’s there. He’s the funny one.

Oh why! Why why am I inexplicably drawn to their little haircuts and cheeky smiles? Why do I know all their names?! It’s wrong! They’re about 16, and still in high school! But I love them. And mark my words, win or lose, this won’t be the last you hear of them. Bedroom walls will bear their little faces. Girls will scream and faint. Marketing genius will prevail.

PS. Ok, they came third! A real surprise for me. Who knew that Mum’s were voting more than teenage girls? Still, it won’t make any difference, One Direction will still be huge. And maybe when they turn 18 I’ll feel less guilty for thinking they’re so cute!

Well, I was totally wrong about FYD, wasn’t I? Och well, what you gonna do? I certainly didn’t expect the outpouring of love and support for Wagner either! Classic. It’s like Jedward all over again!

Frankly, despite actually being able to sing and dance at the same time, how could FYD compete with One Direction? Those boys are so freaking cute I just want to put them on a piece of toast. (Which is much better than wanting to do anything else with them, since they’re all about 16 and that would be very illegal!)

Still, I seriously predict they will be in the top three. They are a teenage dream.

But who else will be there? It’s anyone’s guess at this point. Here’s hoping Louis gives John a better song this week! And Matt sings a song for a bloke for a change!

As always, bring on Saturday!

Hooray!!

It’s a whole new season of X Factor, and with the live finals about to commence, there is a good degree of anticipation in the air. And, I will go as far as to say, I’m even more excited about this year, than last year. Last year, I was all about Danyl, as some of you will remember. After the judges houses, he was my only favourite, and remained so throughout the competition. But this year, I have quite a few favourites, and even more acts I really like. Let’s take a look shall we?

Matt Cardle.

Oh sweet Jesus. Hold me back! Who is this dishevelled beardy man with the voice of an angel, and the gorgeous personality? I love him. There I said it. I would quite like to have his cute little beardy, hat wearing babies. And we will paint and decorate the world with our love, while we all sing, like the new Von Trapp family. Too much?

John Adeleye

He’s so cute and cool and likeable! And he has a great voice. I think he’ll be a lot of fun, and I look forward to hearing him do some old school soul choons. I was a bit worried, like Louis, about the level of freak in the eight Over 28’s that went to judges houses. As someone who is over 28 myself, I really struggled with the thought that out of all the 1,000’s of people who auditioned, they were the best?? I mean, you don’t hit 30 and suddenly become a freak! But Wagner, and that freaky guy with the pointy ears who looked like he escaped from G.A.Y nightclub? Jesus! John is awesome though, and I’m really happy he made it through. Looking forward to seeing more of him!

FYD

How cool are they? Not at all JLS mark 2. They’re original and talented, and I think they’re going to pull off some amazing productions. And they’re much much better than Princes & Rogues, so I’m glad these boys got through. If I was Simon, I’d be rubbing my manicured hands together, and seeing all the pound signs rolling across my eyes, like a one-armed bandit display. Cha-ching!

1 Direction

Ok, stupid stupid name. Who the hell thought of that? But look at them. A completely manufactured boy-band, aimed 100% at getting the teenage girl vote. And it’s gonna work! After the road-accident that was Lloyd last year, Simon has learned his lesson. You can’t win X-Factor on cute boy looks alone, you need to really be able to sing… But maybe if you take that cute boy factor, make sure they can all sing a bit, and times it by five – winner!! I have to admit to being very sad when little Liam didn’t get through, because I really thought he deserved it and had real potential. So I’m glad he got another chance. And looking at his little face, along with the other four, it is hard to imagine the girls not falling in love with them a bit more every week.

I also quite like Aiden Grimshaw, and think he can do well. Probably fulfilling the Olly quota for the year, but much cuter and less of a douchebag. And I like Storm Lee too, even though Simon hates him! I kinda want to see those fireworks fly! Belle Amie have potential too. A lot more than Miss Frank did last year!

Biggest gripe so far is Cheryl putting Cher and Katie through even though they totally ballsed-up their auditions. I mean historically, if you don’t bring it at judges houses and you go home! Not really fair to those who did perform perfectly. But I guess Cheryl is learning from the Rachel Adedeje saga of last year. You can be as talented as you like, and sing your heart out, but if you don’t have something different, or special, it’s curtains. And Cher and Katie will at least be interesting to watch, but you can’t help getting annoyed at them for being such drama queens. You can’t imagine Simon being as indulgent!

So that’s my first 2 pence for the year! What do you guys think? Are you excited? Who are you backing?

I’ll tell you one thing. Roll on Saturday!!

I do try and write posts about stuff other than Danyl. I do. And then a Fanyl gets in touch, or Tweets something, and I get all fired up again. It’s weird. He just does something to me. And I know I’m not the only one! There are a bunch of grown women out there, embracing their inner teenage fan-girl, heading all over the UK to see Danyl perform live. And I love it!

Even though I managed to catch Danyl myself at Selfridges (and he was awesome), I think watching the video above has given me the most joy. Seeing all of Reading turn out to cheer, and scream, and wave signs. It made me really happy to see Danyl have the moment he would have had if he had made it to the final. Although the fact he was there as himself, and not an X Factor finalist, makes it even better.

I think what is giving me the most joy is watching Dan wowing audiences live, and making them not just fans of him on the X Factor, but fans for his real music career. He seems to be giving it all he’s got, really giving the fans his time, and working them up into a frenzy on stage, and that will only benefit him in the future.

There were even rumours today that he is working on an album, to be released next year. Let’s hope they are true.

For now there are still loads of Danyl gigs, and one of Dan’s hardest working Fanyls has emailed them to me, so I can print the full list right here. (She would like to add the disclaimer that some of them may not be confirmed, and that you should check with the venue before turning up!) But she also said that at most of these club nights, for an extra tenner, you get to have a meet and greet with Dan, so if you are dying to meet him, there’s your chance!

Ok, here goes:

Wed 16

7pm = Shopping centre (Barnsley)

12.30am = Escapade (Barnsley)

Thu 17

9.30pm = 53 Degrees   (Preston)

11pm =   Syndicate   (Blackpool)

2 am  =    Escapade    (Chesterfield)

Fri 18

9 pm   =   Viper Rooms  (Harrogate)

12pm? = Powerhouse   (Newcastle – possibly with Lloyd Daniels who had to postpone from  11th)

Sat 19

11 pm  = Pure  (Mancherster)

12.30am?=  Halo   (Warrington  – no meet & greet)

2am?=  Nightingale   (Birmingham)

Sun 20

Campus  (Glasgow) Time TBA

City     (Edinburgh) Time TBA

Weds 23

11pm = Play  (Swansea)

Thurs 24

Play (Hereford) Time TBA

Sat 26

11pm? = Zanzibar (Leicester)

1am ? = Halo (Nottingham)

Sun 27

Birkenhead Pop Factory, Pacific Road Arts Centre. (Sold Out)

Mon 28

Chicago Rock Café   (Fareham) Time TBA

Wed 30

Chicago Rock Café     (Middlesburgh) Time TBA

Chicago Rock Café      (Northampton) Time TBA

January

Sat 9

Syndicate    (Bristol) Time TBA

Sat 30

Tokyo    (Bradford)

February

Sat 7

Wakefield Wildcats rugby fixture

From 15 Feb

X FACTOR OFFICIAL LIVE TOUR

Again, these are not confirmed, so please check with the venue (esp times). And if you have any updates for me please, please, please send them through. I would like to keep this list as up-to-date as possible.

Thanks again for doing the hard yards and finding the dates Maggie! You’re a star.

The results of the way the public voted during this season of the X Factor have been released, and it’s very interesting. If you were to take overall popularity, Danyl actually gave Joe a run for his money, topping the polls on three separate occasions.

Even that first week, as Louis and Cheryl were claiming he was unlikeable and cocky, the audience were voting for him three times as much as any other act in the competition. Then, when he had that bad week in Rock Week, it actually turned out to be a good week for him because he again trebled the votes of any other finalist.

I supposed after that the bad press began to take its toll, but Danyl was still rating well. And a lot better than the supposedly popular and “likeable” Olly, who seems to have been the luckiest competitor ever. Olly never even got over 15% of the vote until the semi final, and even then Danyl only lost to Stacey by 0.6% and Olly by 0.8%. That is only a handful of votes difference. I wonder if Danyl hadn’t been quite so good on his last week, perhaps his fans would have voted more, in fear that he was going to leave. I think a lot of us thought he was safe that night, and voted a little less than previous weeks.

And also, as has been pointed out on other blogs, if it has gone to deadlock the night Olly and Jedward were in the bottom 2, Olly would have gone home! It would have been a different competition then!

There are several things that I find really interesting about these results though:

1. That, due to the way the voting works, Olly could make it through to the final when Danyl and Stacey were consistently more popular.

2. That the bad press Danyl had to endure really does seem to have blown his chances of winning.

3. But that despite being called unlikeable, Danyl’s voting results resoundingly prove otherwise.

4. However, singing Whitney Houston doesn’t seem to be a good idea if you want votes!

5. And that no matter what, it looks as if Joe wiped the floor with them all fair and square. And his reward? The dubious honour of having his first single be a cover of The Climb…

I will be interested to see what happens in the next year. Who gets a record deal, who gets a TV presenting job, who gets a part in Hollyoaks, and who disappears into obscurity. May fortune be with them.

I, for one, can’t wait to see and hear the album Danyl makes. I hope it’s as good as we all know it could be.

The X Factor final weekend approaches people, and I’d like to say that I’m excited about it. I’d like to say that. But frankly, I’m not. And it’s no mystery why that would be, is it? Because now Danyl has gone, I don’t really care who wins.

Cos let’s face facts. Neither Olly or Stacey were outstanding last week. They got through on personality/popularity vote, which is fair enough, and the nature of the competition. But this does mean that the standard of the performances in the final will suffer. Stacey, Joe and Olly have found their niche, and they will perform within it.

I suppose we should get excited about the celeb guests… Simon tells us that “Olly will be duetting with Robbie Williams, Joe will be duetting with George Michael and Stacey will be duetting with Michael Bublé.” But Robbie and the Boob have already been on! That’s hardly a coup!

To be honest, I was more excited about catching Danyl singing at Selfridges on Tuesday! He was fabulous. And looked smoking.

But for now, the facts  is that it’s all about Joe, Olly and Stacey (yawn). Joe will almost certainly win, and I’m not saying that he doesn’t deserve it, because he has performed well. It just doesn’t excite me.

Ok, I will watch it. Maybe not on Saturday night though. Maybe I’ll watch it hungover on Sunday. That can be my protest!

In the meantime, did you see Olly’s “just hanging out in my pants” video diary??? What the…? Honestly, and they called Danyl cocky!