X Factor – Guilty Heroes Week

My money’s on Carol Decker in the fourth round by knockout. You don’t survive a “Here & Now” tour without picking up a few moves.

BixMix : For people who thought Misha B laid it on thick last week, I present you…BixMix : The Ultimate Pandering. I don’t think it could get more wretched than it got this week, but Lord knows I’m always willing to proved wrong. We were told that Tulisa will be a HERO if they win, like a Susan B Anthony for the UK. The girls themselves appeared on the Surgery, to pimp out further how some people said some mean things about Jesy on the Internet so we all pity-vote for them, with the added extra special side-message that being insecure about yourself is a good thing and a real thing and what makes you you. Then they all sit honking their way through Beautiful but make sure to strip every last bit of defiance from the song to just cry and bleat their way through it, and then talk about how it has a VERY SPECIAL MEANING to them (the meaning being “I am great, bullying is mean” presumably?). And this isn’t even touching on bringing Diana Ross and Justin effing Bieber into the same sphere of reference. It was bad enough when The Pussycat Dolls smeared themselves all over her. I think they’re winning this, which is depressing given that they’re the first Final Four candidates I can barely bring myself to sit through since Meaty Minge.

Janet Devlin : Well, I guess that just about answers the question as to how bad Janet would have to get before the public eliminated her. We’ll sadly never know if it’s better or worse than Frankie would have had to have been before he was cut. And even then in the end it was probably more because her boyfriend would slide right into the One Directions in terms of non-threatening good-looks and therefore it became apparent that she didn’t hate herself like every good girl does. Still that performance of “Mmmm Bop” was a bit wretched wasn’t it? Even without her forgetting the words/dry heaving her way through the chorus. Pop songs turned out to be harder than Janet expected I would imagine. Of course this vaguely pretentious “I like obscure bands that my boyfriend also likes and we listen to them together and kiss chastely” vibe was why she grew on me, because who didn’t know that girl when they were 16? Especially as it climaxed in her brilliantly calling a band who have had 4 platinum selling albums in the UK “obscure” and then singing UNDER THE BRIDGE of all songs (then again this show apparently thinks Aretha Franklin is obscure and up until Series 7 was under the impression that 1992 was “current” so who are we to doubt its vocabulary?). The only thing that could have made it better is her indulging herself with that stupid high pitched tribal wailing at the end of the song. I’m very sorry that she never got to do Nirvana. That would have been an almighty BLITZKRIEG on a par to when Wagner did Radiohead. As it is I will just have to hug her amazing “The X Factor tried to turn me into a PUPPET!” exit-interviews to my heart.

Misha B : Barlow Approved, it’s the Misha B Comeback Special. And as such, it was a bit like watching Misha B’s week 1 performance as described by your nan. Hideous zebra leggings, random hair, “HA HA HA!” every other line, and a rap break that was by far the most exciting aspect of the whole thing (especially as it was a rap about how Ready Salted crisps are boring). It was a synthetic Misha B rather than an actual return to her early form, but at this stage of the series I’ll take it, even with the attendant awful ickly girl voice and fake humility afterwards. Her second performance I wasn’t so keen on, apart from it revealing her musical hero as Lauryn Hill, and therefore providing a tenuous link to the possibility that once existed that Misha B could be batshit and awesome and self-destructive rather than mewling and cowed. She’s gone next week, barring the show pulling a total Cher Lloyd at shoving her through to the final for the sake of controversy, and I’ll be interested to see what proportion humble:misha we’re going to get. Here’s hoping for a blaze of glory, the likes of which did not happen this week.

Marcus Collins : So this was the week. The week that they lined Marcus up for his “Listen”. Removed all the dancers, stripped back the production, and left him very self-consciously alone with a microphone to do a big ballid, pull out the stops praise-wise, and then sit back and see if it worked. And has it? Sort of. He’s wrested back the role of bookies favourite from BixMix (not that has meant anything at all this series, but still) but I can’t help feeling like the song just wasn’t suited to showing off his voice. God knows I love Stevie Wonder, but he’s not really got many big show-stoppers in the X Factor sense, and “Lately” isn’t one of them. We’ll see – I’ve tried not to buy into the whole “let’s write off any male winner as soon as they happen” narrative that’s round this show like bindweed, but I think it might be better for him not to have the weight of that expectation on him. He certainly needs freeing from performance like his first one, in tribute to poor dead George Michael, which was pretty much the definition of “inessential”. Still, at least he hasn’t ramped out any sob stories eh Tulisa? No matter how much you prodded him to.

Amelia Lily : Let’s face it, this is nothing to do with Amelia Lily, and EVERYTHING to do with Gary BArlow deciding to take on one of the definitive dive recordings of the 80s. Why not take a pop at “Total Eclipse Of The Heart?” whilst you’re at it Gary? Say you always thought “Alone” was a bit pitchy? Snigger behind your hand at “I Found Someone”? Take the piss out of “Eternal Flame”? When you take on “China In Your Hand” you take on a whole ARMY of angry gays, as Saturday Night on the Internet proved. Also you got Carol Decker to call you a twat, which was hilarious. Amelia Lily’s take on the song was anaemic to say the least, because it was done with the intention of singing the song “well” which is always an inferior take on an 80s classic than running masscara and torn up pillows and boob-hugging histrionics. Oh yeah and then she did Kelly Clarkson and it was much the same. For a girl who seems so capable of channeling anger in her interviews she seems to do a piss-poor job of expressing it properly when she sings.


13 thoughts on “X Factor – Guilty Heroes Week

  1. Caroline

    When watching Amelia, I can help but wish Alesha would come along and tell her that having her legs that far apart is unfeminine….

  2. Neio

    I think I’d pay good money to see Carol Decker beat the crap out of Gary Barlow.

    Little Mix making the final seems pretty inevitable. I’d maybe be supporting them if Tulisa hadn’t purposely sabotaged Misha’s chances, such as they were, with the whole bullying thing. And this week Tulisa had the nerve to accuse Louis of sabotage (to what end he’d be doing so, exactly, is not clear.)

    1. ooh

      That’s how I feel. I’ve no interest in watching Tulisa win after the way she helped crush Misha. Also she should be punished for her total lack of musical knowledge. And as well as that, Little Mix bore me.
      I’d almost want Marcus to win if it didn’t make me think about Gary expanding into a giant cloud of smugness.

  3. fused

    Little Mix are my least favourite of the remaining acts, and unfortunately I think they’ll probably win. Their bandwagon has started at just the right time to gain momentum towards the final. But they look and sound like a mess. They don’t really gel as a group, there’s something still very thrown together about them. The thing is, I wouldn’t mind that quite so much if it didn’t feel like the show was actively trying to make them look messy in order for them to gain votes, but there is a feeling that they are pratically encouraging the girls to make sure they break down in tears and hug even if the performance of the song suffers as a result.

    I have the opposite opinion to you with regards to Misha B’s songs. Her first one didn’t really work for me (although it was still ‘good’ I guess, in the context of this week’s performances anyway), and I loved her second one. I did like the reference to Ready Salted crisps in her rap though, as that was a very ‘British rapper’ thing to do.

    I love China In Your Hand. I love Total Eclipse, Alone, Eternal Flame and I Found Someone as well, but China In Your Hand in particular, especially as it’s one of my mum’s favourite songs. I laughed when I read that Carol Decker had called Gary Barlow a twat. But I thought her comment that she had to sit through a Take That gig for her kids was funnier and a better comeback, particularly as Gary Barlow kind of repeated it in his apology to her.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I think the surest sign of an impending BixMix win is that suddenly rumours are shooting out that the plan for Barlow to write the winner’s single has been shelved. Shame – I was really looking forward to seeing what Gary would have put out for a four-piece girl group. I’m sure it would have been AMAZING.

      The Ready Salted reference would have worked better if she didn’t repeat it twice, like she wasn’t going “THAT’S RIGHT, I SAID READY SALTED!”. Also if salt weren’t a seasoning (and, you know, the most important one)

  4. Carl

    I’d never heard China in Your Hand before so the whole controversy made me watch the video, leading to a) it’s very silly for someone to listen to that and care about a flat note, it’s just a great song and how many videos have a yoga position in a demolished room b ) I briefly thought she was topless c ) she looked a lot like Catherine Tate. If people were still doing the RAM campaign they should make this #1. Amelia in comparison seemed very, as Simon loved to say, “karaoke.”

    Amelia seems to be taking hairstyle tips from Kitty.

    I really enjoyed Misha’s Fugees/Roberta performance, it’s all by the numbers but she did a great job. I do wish they didn’t make her look 30 years older than they actually is.

    Stevie Wonder’s hits weren’t based on his vocals but were based on the unique emotion he brought. Without that emotion, Marcus just did off-key warbling. Didn’t care for it at all.

      1. Carl

        I only got to see the US version of that (is the UK version on Youtube?). I mostly remember it for Thelma Houston slaying everyone, and being one of the few acts who won based on some reason beyond “they were popular in 1993, the college age of most of the audience.” Oh and Irene Cara wandering around in a daze and still winning.

        Damn, Sinitta’s been in every reality show.

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