This week’s musical theme is Guilty Pleasures. The theme for the elimination betting market might as well be Mission Impossible. Questions hang over the five most probable candidates to go home, and don’t forget it’s another double elimination with all the problems that entails.
Will a poor choice of song halt the Wagner bandwagon? Will last week’s sing-off survivors Belle Amie enjoy a sympathy bounce? Will Katie fall back after enjoying her own sympathy bounce last week? How, if at all, will poor Paije’s bereavement affect his performance and public vote? And just who is picking up the phone and voting for John Adeleye?
Let’s take them in turn.
This should have been another week to bet against Wagner being eliminated. After all he’s been THE guilty pleasure of X Factor so far. But the song choice rumoured throughout the week, ‘Relax’, is a potential disaster. Wagner’s shtick is a middle-aged ladies’ man; ‘Relax’ is explicitly about gay sex. Cover Ricky Martin by all means, Tom Jones was a perfect choice, Frankie Goes to Hollywood is a different demographic altogether.
This morning, other rumours suggest Wagner will instead be covering ‘Spice Up Your Life’ by the Spice Girls, possibly involving a mashup with Ricky Martin’s ‘Livin’ la Vida Loca’. These are less risky choices and more likely to see him to safety, but given the conflicting rumours I’m wary about getting involved at this stage.
The early rumours had Belle Amie singing ‘Footloose’, the thought of which didn’t have me kicking off my Sunday shoes. After further rumours that the girls also weren’t happy with it, they’re now reported to be covering ‘I’ll Stand By You’ instead.
Such a dull and predictable choice would likely leave them in deep trouble, but again, there are too many variables here to be confident: Will we see vote-suppressing VTs of them squabbling, or a Simon Cowell song choice apology along the lines that propelled Scott Bruton’s public vote in Week 1 of 2008?
I said last week that I thought Paije’s days on X Factor looked numbered. But the young lad has suffered terribly since due to a family bereavement, leaving producers with a quandary. How much should they publicise what has happened? It has impacted his ability to rehearse this week, but if handled delicately, the public might well give him plenty of support.
Katie benefited from the sympathy bounce last week, but as our article on this phenomenon indicates, those that do more likely than not return towards the bottom of the public vote. However, there’s no doubting her ability to continue generating headlines and creating controversy. The question is, how long can she survive on the back of this?
One rumour for Katie has her covering ‘I Wanna Be Like You (King of the Swingers)’ from the Jungle Book. On the face of it this would do her no favours, but it’d be such a left-field choice it’s hard to be sure how it would play out.
A good source tells me John Adeleye scraped in just above the bottom three last week. As someone who has tipped him to be eliminated in each of the first two weeks, I find that very easy to believe. But he has managed to avoid a sing-off despite poor draws and boring song choices.
Guilty Pleasures may not sound like his kind of week, but the rumoured song choice of cheesy 80s number ‘Zoom’ would be a great one for him and might just be enough to zoom him into Week 4.
So many questions, no concrete answers until the Saturday show; my advice is to watch and act afterwards. I’ll be writing a Sunday article this week (and following ones), telling you what I’m backing after the performances.