This week’s X Factor theme was Halloween. I can’t quite remember when Halloween became a ‘thing’ on X Factor, as it seems a pretty difficult, pointless and confusing theme to master on the paved road to stardom, but there you go. Scream as Rylan does something unnerving! Shiver as Tulisa’s ‘game talk’ reaches irritatingly new lows! Recoil as Christopher Maloney wears the unshiftable grin of a seaside puppet!
Drunk Judge Of The Week: Nicole Scherzingher
My favourite thing about X Factor last year was Kelly Rowland. She was brilliant because she had a very poor grasp of what being an X Factor judge actually entailed, so watching her come up with catchphrases, jive-talking to her acts and flicking her weave in Tulisa’s face was brilliant entertainment. Though she’s gone, her bashful unprofessionalism lives on in Nicole ‘Ruiner of Rachel Crow’s Dreams*’ Scherzingher, who this week decided to cannonball eight buckets of wine before taking her seat.
To District 3, dressed as Clockwork Orange: ‘I know we’re being spooky but those eyes? I’m… I’m scared’
To James Arthur: ‘I love the way you just taste and feel… your songs’
To some other contestants: ‘Slrrnnhg… Hhmbz? Ghrsssnn VOTE RYLAN sluzzyr’
Unusual Throwback To A Script Lyric Of The Week: Tulisa, to Jahmene
After singing a very nice song**, Jahmene received glowing feedback from the judges (guess which one likened him to a young someone something). The weirdest praise was from Tulisa ‘Connoisseur Of The Urbane’ Contostavlos, saying ‘I have a nickname for you. You’re The Man Who Can’t Be Moved’. Reports that Jahmene will Break Even next week For The First Time, allowing him to enter The Hall Of Fame (ft Will.I.Am) are as of yet unconfirmed.
Least Endearing Nickname Of The Week: Ella Henderson, ‘Cupcake’
Carrying on from last year’s ‘Likkle Muffins’ – Tulisa’s term of endearment to her girlband Little Mix – comes this slightly horrible remark to Ella. The fact is, cupcakes are bad for you, sickly, a bit twee, popular with hipsters and stud the streets of London like intricately frosted prostitutes. WELL DONE TULISA. Also, if she doesn’t stop putting on that fucking horrible ‘up North’ accent when she says it I’m calling OFFCOM.
The P45 Award For Not Being Particularly Missed: Spraggo ‘Lucy’ Spraggan
Oh Spraggo. After being too poorly to perform, you’ve gone into the X Factor’s loftiest heights of notoriety – getting a free pass to next week. This has happened rarely (Diana Vickers was the only other one I think) but there’s something worrying about the X Factor hoofing everyone out to Mahiki for Rylan’s tragifest of a birthday then being concerned that the contestants have sore throats. What would Spraggo have sung anyway? Some rambling sentimental love-whinge that was interspersed with ‘Thriller’, maybe. It makes me angry just thinking about it.
So Humble and Normal Award: Jade
Just when you worry her great track-record and constant praise from the judges might go to her head, we have a helpful VT that informs us just how down to earth Jade actually is. Forget a clip explaining her song choice, or the judges weighing in on how she is doing as a singer, this week was all about Jade picking her daughter up from school and having Tulisa round for a cup of tea (ARE YOU KIDDING ME X FACTOR) because she’s so normal. Next week: Rylan visits his hometown and his family tell him they’re so proud of him for sticking to his roots (while he gets his roots did at a posh Essex salon).
NEXT WEEK: There is one less person, so naturally the programme has more adverts.
* If you haven’t seen this, watch this clip of Nicole’s stint on US Factor last year. It’s tragimazing because she basically ruins everything for one contestant by going to deadlock, with what follows carrying a bleak, emotionally fraught atmosphere you’d sooner expect from an explosion at an animal shelter.
** Something that has annoyed me for a while is the way singers of opposing gender to the original maker of a song swap the gender round so it sounds like they are conceivably singing it to a heterosexual lover. Jahmene did it on Killing Me Softly and all it did was make it really jarring and obvious they changed it round. Why bother? Do they think if he keeps ‘he’ ‘man’ and ‘him’ in a song people will think he’s gay? Because Jade, who if you believe the papers (and why wouldn’t you we check our sources etc etc), has no problem singing lyrics addressed to a man despite the fact she is attracted to women. She isn’t doing a disservice to her sexuality or anything ridiculous like that – she’s covering a song. RANT OVER.