X Factor 2011 Week 8 Update: Who says this show has become predictable?

Hands up – we got that completely wrong. We had expected Amelia Lily to be tonight’s sacrificial lamb. She got the pimp slot. We had worried that the show’s favouritism towards Little Mix was in danger of becoming painfully obvious. They got the death slot.

Our initial reaction to this show is therefore nicely summed up by Jack in the comments: “I haven’t got a clue what they are thinking. Unless they read Sofabet and are trying to be unpredictable…”.

It was a major surprise to see Little Mix come out first, in the Strictly overlap zone, and get what we would usually interpret as some classic vote-dampening comments – lukewarm from the other judges, coupled with overconfident-sounding (“you have a huge fanbase… you can win this”) from Tulisa.

Their second song returned to the theme of Jesy’s insecurity about her weight, which had started the Little Mix steamroller steamrolling in week 4, and looked like an all-out pitch for the does-my-bum-look-big-in-this vote. It looked all set up for “Beautiful” to be their much-anticipated breakout moment, where they would be pimped to high heaven for the purity of their harmonising.

Nope. As Gary noted, the vocals were not as tight as they could have been, and the reaction from both the studio audience and Betfair punters was surprisingly muted. Gary’s comments went on to reference two of the themes that were pummelled to death in One Direction’s journey last year – friendship and hard work. Then he turned that positive into an unexpected negative by saying that was all that was keeping them in the competition. Ouch. Then Tulisa made a “they are not safe” appeal.

What do we make of all this?

Either it’s a sign of great confidence indicating that their vote performance last week must have been strong. Or possibly it’s a sign they are struggling in the votes and the show wants to get them into a singoff now, so they can be saved and sympathy-bounce through the semi and into the final. This would imply us believing that they wouldn’t want to risk negative publicity by having a singoff at the final four stage next week.

It’s a head-scratcher. But if the latter, save them against who? Step forward the second act to perform, Janet Devlin – at least, that is the view of the markets, who backed her in to 4/6 favourite to be the next eliminee.

Janet’s first performance saw her second lyric flub of the series. And her third. Oh dear. Much more worryingly, though, as Kramer pointed out in the comments, Louis’s phrasing after her second song was unlikely to have been accidental. “Everyone in Ireland is picking up the phone”, rather than “everyone in Ireland, pick up the phone!”

Translation: No need to vote, people, everyone is Ireland is voting for her anyway.

We have said repeatedly over the last couple of weeks that Janet’s treatment makes sense only under one of two scenarios – they are desperate to get rid of her, or they are confident she is safe and want to dampen her vote as much as possible to give Little Mix a chance of beating her. The most obvious explanation has always been the former.

We have felt the need to entertain alternative explanations because she was so relentlessly pimped all through the audition stages and up to the second live show. But it’s certainly now looking like the obvious explanation is the right one after all.

It still wouldn’t be a huge surprise to us if Janet is called safe tomorrow, though. Gary’s comments did explicitly praise her for being authentic and true to herself, a theme which we have pointed out that the show has been hitting often. And, as Nugget said in the comments: “It is actually better in my opinion to do a really bad performance and mess up than an average one. Sympathy vote.”

What’s for sure is that Janet is going to need a whole lot of sympathy in the next 24 hours.

One of the few predictable things of the evening was that Misha B’s first VT started by reminding us of Gary’s comment last week, wanting the “real Misha B” back. And we got it, with full-on urban styling. The trouble is, that urban styling didn’t make a great deal of appeal to middle England in the early part of the series, hence the radical softening that started with ‘Proud Mary’.

In particular, the hoodie dancers are unlikely to have done her many favours.

Was this an attempt to get Misha back in the game? Maybe – though you could equally read it as a valedictory blaze-of-glory to set her up for 2012. Gary even explicitly talked about setting her up for 2012 after her first performance, which felt surprisingly meta.

As for Marcus, they couldn’t have done more for him if they’d tried, or made him look more humble – which had started to be a concern after his crucifixion pose last week. As we still find it hard to believe they would want Marcus as a winner, our conclusion is that he may not be doing brilliantly in the vote and could be in need of help to get to the final.

The pimp slot which Amelia Lily got, entirely against our expectations, really ought to be enough to see her safe along with the sympathy bounce she is due after last week – although the fact that she is no higher than 9/2 after being pimped tells you that she hardly knocked it out of the park vocally. What this portends for the show’s intentions for Amelia after this week is something we’ll have to cogitate on further in due course.

Back to tonight, though, and looking at the elimination market odds, we reckon there might be a bit of value in Misha B to be eliminated at 7/2 with Ladbrokes. Nobody could be surprised if Janet leaves us tomorrow, but 4/6 does seem a bit skinny for an act who has never touched the bottom two, when compared against 7/2 for an act who has been there twice already and is due a comedown from her latest sympathy bounce.

Can you make sense of tonight? Do let us know below.

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111 comments to X Factor 2011 Week 8 Update: Who says this show has become predictable?

  • Sarah

    Marcus may have pulled it out of the bag with that ballad. The opening was very shaky (and had some bum notes) but the 2nd half was absolutely beautiful!

    I have to say I think the red&black theory is just a coincidence. Marcus was clearly being pimped tonight but he had a red and black back drop for his 2nd song.

  • tpfkar

    Yeauch. Agree with the confused tone of the article – my only crumb of comfort is that I did say earlier in the week that it would be a sign of confidence to send Little Mix out first and I think it was. But for me, tonight was only about one contestant. Step forward, Miss Janet Devlin.

    Her VTs were terrible, she looked totally alone. Even on that easyjet plane (what’s the secret, it’s always a cattle market when I’m on one?) Speaking of ruining songs, not being a Christmas person, being alternative. She went back to Ireland, saw her face on the side of the empty pub (I’m sure Kirkby has a pub like that…) and didn’t meet any of her family. Eh? Her boyfriend making a brief appearance only stopped her male admirers voting for her.

    Judges comments over-harsh but non-controversial on the second song. You mention in the article Louis kindly telling us that Ireland were all voting for her (so you don’t need to) but also Tulisa telling her that she’ll be a recording artist (so you don’t need to, er, vote for her.)

    And if there’s one thing worse than choosing Mmmbop, it’s forgetting the lyrics. Must have been a gift for the producers. They reinforced the view of her look alone in the second song, and the replay clips were far from positive.

    Enough. I’d say there’s enough evidence there to bring charges of attempted murder. My only question is whether she can escape. It doesn’t look good, I’d expect Misha bottom of the rest, but the other three had a storming week last week (LM) did really well this week (MC) or were pimped like crazy and due a sympathy bounce (AL)

    I hedged part of my bets on Janet not to go this week once I realised what was happening but am still significantly down if she goes – bracing for a loss. I have to hope that you are right that she still has a good chance of escaping, but I can’t feel it myself.

  • Ben Cook

    Maybe that red and black staging theory is nonsense then, since Amelia got that at the same time as a pimp slot.

    She’s surely safely through now, with Janet v Misha for the bottom 2.

  • Red and black – a classic FBR – “fooled by randomness”

  • Ben Cook

    Also Gary was talking about Amelia’s “journey”, which was the way I saw it when she first came back. I think you’re wrong – the producers would be perfectly happy for someone to come back and win it, despite what you’ve said before.

    • tpfkar

      I agreed with the articles here every step of the way that they wouldn’t want Amelia to win for the credibility of the show.

      I’m not quite ready to turn that round – my theory is that they’ve pimped her like crazy this week to get her ahead of Janet. I think they would need to based on the votes last week. Assuming they complete the execution of Janet tomorrow, they can then nobble Amelia next week as she comes down from the sympathy bounce, and it’s champagne all round as they’ve got Misha into the final.

  • Jake

    They pimped so many acts tonight, they may risk pushing Little Mix into the bottom 2. I was pretty sure Little Mix was the new plan and the producers would focus all their efforts on them. However with fantastic comments/performances for Marcus, Amelia and Misha, they may damage Little Mix (who received mixed ones).

    Unless… they are trying to push Little Mix into the bottom 2 (as they are just doing OK in the votes) and then rebound them into the final with a chance of winning.

    Imagine:

    First Group Win
    (Female Group no less)
    First act to win who has been bottom 2.

  • EM

    After a series that was easier to read than Spot Goes for a Walk this was harder to understand than Quantum Physics.

    It wasn’t helped by poor performances from Janet, Little Mix, Marcus and Amelia Lilly. Simon must have been regretting his pleasure about Marcus doing a ballad as his opening of Lately was as dodgy as a seven pound note.

    Song choice was interesting, Little Mix would get no votes for a Beiber song, not many outside the Beiber base would know what it was and those who did would be split amongst how dare they, I can’t afford to vote and I hate Justin.

    Janet’s poor performnce wasn’t part of the plan but felt very I Want You Back. Not happening for her again, but it hasn’t before and she still passed.

    Mischa must be in danger. The urban style hasnt worked for her, the Killing Me Softy was underwhelming and we know she just doesn’t have the fanbase.

    Want my long odds value bet? Bottom two Marcus and Mischa

  • Noisy

    Daniel, don’t you think the producers would save Misha if she was in the bottom two against Janet?

    That’s looking the most likely bottom two and if they’re keen to save Misha then being up against Janet who’s now forgotten the words twice would be the perfect excuse.

    • Noisy

      Sorry, Andrew not Daniel this time!

    • Andrew

      Hi Noisy, I wrote this one up as Daniel’s wifi was on the blink! 🙂

      You would have to assume so, wouldn’t you? (Although Daniel texts me just now to say he wouldn’t be going in big on it.) Thing is, that assumption is already reflected in the fact that Janet’s odds for being eliminated are only a smidgeon longer than her odds for being in the bottom two.

      And while Janet-Misha does indeed look the most likely bottom two, we haven’t had the most likely-looking bottom two come to pass yet in this series.

      • Boki

        That seems to be the plan if Janet hits bottom 2 against anyone. But why do you find value in Misha to be eliminated? She would be saved against Janet or Amelia (which are most likely to join her).

        • Andrew

          Good morning Boki! Quite honestly the Misha 7/2 call was a gut reaction after a confusing show, but now you force us to justify it logically… 😉

          If you just look at the B2 combo markets, Misha/LM (6/1) and Misha/Marcus (16/1) are aleady a combined price of just under 4/1, and for reasons of balance surely Misha would have to go against either.

          I would start by arguing that there is so much uncertainly around what last night signified, each of those combos should probably be a bit shorter than it is – there is a plausible case that they might be happy to bounce Little Mix into the final, and a plausible case that Marcus might have got all that help because he’s struggling.

          That leaves Amelia, and her pimping must raise a significant question mark over their intentions towards her. Would they save Misha 3-1 over her if they had to? Quite possibly, but I don’t think it’s a foregone conclusion any more.

          • Boki

            Good points and indeed lot of confusion last night. Lmix bounce attempt is actually not such a crazy idea, they started in a death slot with bad song choice and at that point producers didn’t know that Janet will mess up the lyrics. I can just hope Misha vs Amelia sing-off will not happen, tricky one.

      • Noisy

        Very true! One of the two elimination favourites always seems to sneak clear as Frankie demonstrated a few times.

        I could see Amelia going as I think she’s struggled to build the fanbase Janet has due to the late start and think they’d save Misha over her too.

  • annie

    I think Little Mix being first wasn’t bad for them for a number of reasons: their first song, the one overlapping with strictly didn’t work very well, i think it was the arrangement of the song not being good(they should have gone with the rachel crow version for usxfactor, that one was more melodic, this one far to broken down by beats), i’m sure it was noticed that it’s not working, so they quickly got it out of the way while some were still watching stricly and then everyone got to see them shine on their second song.
    taking the ideea further i think no one would be that upset of them ending up in bottom 2 at this stage, that would practically mean being runner up of the series and being the first girl group to achieve it i’m sure it’s enough to start a career. (no question about it they would be saved against anyone in the b2).
    Janet must be reeeeaaaallly difficult to work with by the look of how desperately they are trying to get rid of her, cause even the charity single and the m&s ad demonstrates that her recording voice is distinguishable, she has style, personality (not a bubbly one but she stands out for sure), she is musical and I think her audition video is the only thing to go semi viral around the world from the whole series (i had not x factor fanatic facebook friends from all around the world sharing it now and again)

  • Curtis

    It was ugly for poor Janet tonight. If I’d have known they were going to do this to her I’d have wanted her to go last week and leave on a high note. The claimed themes of the show were “Musical Heroes” and “Guilty Pleasure” but I saw one constant theme throughout the show tonight. Eliminate Janet seemed to be the true theme. I’m not making any bets today, I’m actually too angry to think rationally. Seems like 5 weeks of destroying Janet’s confidence has been leading to this!

    But if I try and leave personal feelings out of it and think logically, I agree that 7/2 on Misha B to go is surprisingly good for someone who has been in the bottom 2 twice.

    • sam

      i to have tried to leave any personal feelings for the performers out of my posts,and think of the big picture but i cant do it this week. sorry for what comes next……,those scum sucking moronic tone def limp wristed soul destroying Ahole producers should all be lined up infront of a wall and shot.

      • R

        Sam

        Why go so lightly on them?
        This isn’t just a tv show but a 17 yr old girl’s life they are messing with. The producers are an absolute disgrace.

        • sam

          i agree,they have well and truely screwed her,sorry i had to stop myself from going any further on the coment because my blood pressure was so high i needed to calm down ,but give me 5 mins in a room with them ,closed doors,and no camaras or mikes and would well and truely screw them as they have janet tonight,if only we lived in a country where its leagle to dismember someone for ruining someone hopes and dreams.DAM my blood pressures up again ,i must stop now.

          • misky knoodle

            Totally agree with you Sam over the producers and what they are doing to these young adults and they are young.From the first week when i watched James michael(who s my nephew)and amelia breakdown when they were told,i just thought is what saturday night viewing has become the producers don t care as long as they get the desired viewing figures.plus i felt it for craig lastweek and disgraceful what they have done to janet!

      • Sam – can we leave insults like “limp wristed” at the door, please? There’s no place for those sorts of comments here.

        • sam

          sorry wolfstar i did not aim any comments at anyone on here but at my veiw of the show producers and if my words”limp wristed” caused offence my apoligies to all that if offended,but its how i felt at the time of writing not an intention for you to take offence.freedom of speech is a great thing but it can have its drawbacks i guess

  • R

    My understanding:

    Little Mix got the death slot as they now have a really strong support. Will go through.

    Janet got dumped on big time. Plus she has said she didn’t forget the words she stopped because she thought she was going to throw up. Apparently she has food poisoning – surely they wouldn’t go that far. Think Janet fans may finally start to wilt under the pressure.

    Misha may be b2 but was given a positive vt. Her singing was so out at the start of The Fugees song I could clearly hear the backing vocal.

    Marcus. I didn’t like the first half of the SW song but thought the Wham was best performance of the night for me.
    One note:How do you jump off a desk and land on your feet without the note changing? Strong enough performances/VT etc to stay out of the bottom 2.

    Amelia. Again wasn’t really impressed with either performance but the comments were good and she may have been given the pimp slot to keep her out of the bottom 2.

  • You surely can not say that they want Janet to win after tonight.

    I think I would adapt my Red and Black theory and say it’s Red and Black and a sort of smokey “gates of hell” style. The subliminal message was just unbelievable this weekend! Sticking her face in a frame and then burning it!!!

    They want Janet at least weakened, if not completely out at the end of this weekend. I actually am coming round to the theory that Misha is vunerablen if she hits the bottom two. They might deadlock it (they can’t save Misha for a 4th time!). It would be the only fair way. Janet would presumably have more votes with a big Irish bloc at least keeping her afloat and she’d survive. In my mind, ideally they want Amelia and Janet in the bottom two. Louis talked about Amelia being a “pop star” a lot, so he can say “Amelia is the ready made pop star, so bye Janet”.

    You guys like to talk about Plan A. Plan A is Amelia vs Janet. Janet going home. Both had the full Red and Black treatment, both weren’t great, both had weak VT’s.

    I’m off to write a post called “It’s complicated”!

  • Curtis

    Ok, now that there’s been some time to consider things, I’m going to give some actual opinions that don’t involve mouthing off the idiotic producers (bad start I suppose).

    Janet
    I’ll be short about this one. They’ve tried the light weaponry, it didn’t work, so they pulled out the heavy artillery. To my mind, even Janet can’t survive that, but then I fully expected her in the bottom 2 weeks 5 & 6 and it didn’t come to pass.

    Little Mix
    I feel that there is quite possibly a scenario here that they’re trying to stick these girls into the bottom 2 and save them to give them a bounce into the final. Perhaps their vote isn’t as good as people thought. The other possibility is that they’re actually doing really well in the vote and could afford a bad week, and having this week will make it look like they’re being treated fairly.

    Misha B
    She’s in trouble, but the show still clearly want to keep her. Will be saved against Janet but ditched against Little Mix I feel. 7/2 on her elimination is good odds, but I definitely think that you’re making a bet that Janet won’t be in the bottom 2 there, because you’ve got to feel that she would win that sing-off 100%.

    Marcus
    I’m going to take him seriously as a contender to win now. Not because he was good, but because Little Mix had a bad night and Janet a horrible one. I can’t take Misha or Amelia seriously as contenders to win, so I guess I’ve got to start taking this guy seriously.

    Amelia
    Got the pimp slot, did rubbish with it. Pimp slot + sympathy bounce means she’s safe for this week I feel. She can’t win though, she blew it tonight.

  • Kate

    I’m beginning to wonder if we’re looking less at a careful-if-occasionally-disrupted-gameplan and more at total panic behind the scenes.

    Among all the noise I was getting the impression that they were pimping Misha as the Chosen One. Despite the drawbacks she may be the most marketable of the remaining five, with Amelia as a reliable-ish fallback position.

    Tonight’s show had a whiff of “not ready for peak-time” about it. The show worked like mad to get rid of Johnny and Kitty; it can’t be too surprised to find that there’s now something missing.

  • lolhart

    I hope for Janet’s sake she leaves tomorrow. Considering what was thrown at her this week if she survives, what will they resort to next week? She must have really p’ed off TPTB and/or she’s doing really well in the voting and they don’t want her to win. Does anyone remember the last time a contestant has been assassinated to this degree close to the end?

    I’m still finding it hard to call a winner as they all have their significant weaknesses. I think it might actually end up being Marcus by default. I know Little Mix are the favourites, but a lot more people vote in the final and he’s bound to monopolise the grannies and housewives. I think Tulisa will regret drumming up sympathy for him this evening.

  • sam

    after carefull consieration i have now decided that this show is well and truely screwed up,ireally thought i had just got a grip on what was going on with things but after tonights shambolic show i now have NO freaking idea.Im not going to go over the janet thing again as im still way to pissed off to talk constructivly about it,but if this show keeps going in this direction and down this bitter and twisted path then not only will the great britsh pubic scream FIX out loud from the roof tops but,if simon cowell wants to get anything back from this year show then im going to find it very hard to see what he can do to get it done.this is not just about what they did to janet but what there doing to to every act on this show.
    note to cowell…. get your act together and stop screwing with us,we are not your puppits and you cant pull are strings so stop trying,let the performers perform,let the voters vote and STOP interfering with what was a good show up till now and now been turned in to the pantomime horse.

  • Results are up everyone, as expected really. Little mix storm it and Marcus / Amelia are close for third from bottom with Amelia stealing it.

    http://anlytk.wordpress.com/2011/11/26/just-a-quick-update-tonight-heros-night/

    • tpfkar

      I think they’ve got her – and it totally ties in with what I posted above about pimping Amelia to get Janet below her:

      LITTLE MIX 28.3%
      MARCUS 25.5%
      AMELIA 18.8%
      JANET 16.6%
      MISHA 10.9%

      • Curtis

        Interesting point about twitter here with regard to Janet’s chances of staying in the competition. We’ve learnt from experience that twitter doesn’t seem to pick up on the sympathy vote (e.g. last week with Misha). Of course, the question is, will Janet actually get a sympathy vote?

        • tpfkar

          Hi Curtis. It seems to pick up sympathy bounces well enough (magnifies them if anything) but it does seem there’s a negative reaction to sob stories/tears online when it’s positive in votes. Not sure it’s a big deal this week as the only act that went there was Jesy from Little Mix, and I’ve got them leading the vote anyway.

  • Ron

    One thing that may work in Janet’s favour is that messing up her first song and saying she felt like throwing up, may lift her out of the bottom 2 by way of a sympathy vote. Nobody can possibly think she’s safe after a performance like that and it may galvanise people to vote for her.

    My prediction for a surprise bottom 2 is Misha vs Marcus. Universal(and unwarranted) praise from the judges after four slightly underwhelming performances and no indication that either of them is in danger could add up to things going pear shaped for them tomorrow evening.

  • Dug

    Well then! The beam of pride I experienced from my early mention in the last post has been destroyed like an iPhone in a blender. My general expectations of tonight’s show have fared even worse. I will console myself with the fact that everyone seems pretty surprised.

    I double took when Little Mix went on first. I guessed that perhaps the running order would not be the same both times (oops, me). However, it was not the slot that worried me. Coming down from last week’s terrible styling, the girls had been turned into something that made Cher Lloyd look like the girl next door. I have considered the idea that LM are safe enough to warrant a death slot in the name of fairness (to put allegations of preferential treatment to rest) but the turnaround in style screams one of two things – incompetence or sabotage. The girls have done very well so far without big production and silly costumes. Why stop now? Fancy-dress themes and stylistic playfulness are all very well for guest performers on a Sunday but they seem alienating in the context of the biggest popularity contest since Jesus and his clever breadfish trick. I would love to believe that they are safe but I have to go with my head and assume that the girls need a bounce into the final.

    Tonight only served to confirm my eternal doubt in Janet’s ‘unique’, ‘compelling’ and ‘original’ voice. I’m starting to feel very sorry for the girl on a personal level because I think she’s losing it a bit. I barely notices the flumping of lyrics because her vocal was so very weak and few of her notes were actually on point. Whatever my opinions of her, the girl is too young and nowhere near developed enough to handle the X-factor experience.

    Then came Miss Misha B’s urban swan song. It was a case of too incredible too late. Again, the level of production suggested guest performer and not authentic competitor. It was a problem for Cher Lloyd last year and it has been a problem for Misha, and now Little Mix, this year. It’s a slightly tragic reflection of gender equality that we can view Frankie Cocozza’s hedonistic antics and the pink crucifixion of Marcus as charming and likeable whilst a fierce female performance will always put the voting public off. Tonight I fell in love with Misha all over again. The Cyndi Lauper cover was what modern pop music is all about. Shame that nobody cares. I’m definitely on board with Misha in the bottom two.

    It’s a wonder that Tulisa has had to deal with allegations of product placement when Marcus is doing such a thorough job of advertising the entertainment at Butlins. Don’t get me wrong, the man has an incredible voice (in a range of about four notes) but with each week my hope that he might produce anything vaguely ‘current’ dwindles. He’s very lovely. I really believe he’s a nice guy, but I don’t believe he’s a popstar. In fact, I have more faith in the comeback of Joe McElderry. I think producers will want him in the final because, as many commenters have observed, an all-female final would be disastrous for ratings.

    Amelia, an early personal favourite of mine, continues to confuse me. Her T’Pau cover was very, very good and certainly made up for the aggressive assault on ‘You and I’ (a song that she appeared to smash at Judges’ Houses) from last week’s sing-off. The pimping though? I’ll come to that in a moment.

    Round two. DING DING.

    The sob-card played for Little Mix was shamefully cheap. However, I have to disagree with you guys and Borelow. Perrie was at her vocal best and Jesy got enough of her signature warble in to endear the audience to her ongoing battle with insecurity. I’m struggling to see how the criticism on vocals could be legitimate. Find me a dud note and I’ll find you an original statement made by Louis Walsh. Consider the fact that sounding good in a group is *insertnumberofgroupmembershere* times harder than sounding good as a soloist. Many people share the misconception that band members can easily hide behind one another. A lot of errors come from the mixing department and not from the performers themselves. Especially when individual microphones are clearly being turned up and down and up and down and up and down throughout. I think that one Mr Borelow should learn the expression ‘don’t throw bricks when you live in glass houses’ if he ever hopes to overcome allegations of hypocrisy. Fine balladeer, you may be. “One of the finest singer-songwtiters of our generation” (and apparent vocal coach) you ain’t.

    I thought maybe the harsh attack on Janet’s first performance was intended to encourage votes (having contemplated the idea that producers have accepted her as immutable). I thought that maybe the second performance would be her breakthrough to pull it back but it was one of her most forgettable yet. I’m all behind the attempted jettison. Let’s call it a sluggison to be more accurate. But I don’t think it’s working and I will not be shocked if her name is called safe tomorrow.

    Then comes the newly resuscitated Misha B to sing a Fugees classic. This can only mean brilliance. Yet a perfect chance is missed. Not only was the number static and boring, it missed out on a perfect chance for a good rap. It’s all very well Misha bashing down the h8rs and talking about ready salted crisps, but ‘Killing Me Softly’ was the perfect opportunity to rap something a bit more like her Miami rendition of Nicki Minaj’s ‘Fly’. Sad times. Again, I think she’s in massive danger.

    And then the second attempt by the remaining scouser. Don’t get me wrong. I’d rather spend two and a half minutes of my time watching Marcus perform than Craig. However, the former’s performance of ‘Lately’ only served to support my continuing and unpopular assertion that the recently eliminated biscuit boy was by far the stronger vocalist of the two. Sidegob or not, the boy had a range and rarely (if ever) fell flat on notes – a claim to which I do not believe Marcus has a stake. His limited range and stagey style must have been picked up on by producers by now – in fact this was referenced tonight by Gary. I agree that there is no chance producers want a win for Marcus but he will be safe as ever.

    And then came the second half of Amelia’s pimp slot. Then ensued a much weaker vocal than her first. I have very little to say about Amelia. I am confused. I am confused. Also, I’m a bit confused.

    On the one hand, had I not access to such great insight and discussion as can be found here, I would say that tonight was about levelling the playing field. This is the ‘quarter final’ after all. On the second, slightly smellier, more cynical hand (somewhat like that belonging to the late Jeremy Beadle) I have to believe the following.

    Marcus is just Marcus. ‘Nuff said.

    Little Mix are headed for a sing-off bounce.

    And POSSIBLY, producers are shocked to find themselves unsure of which girl they are backing for the final. I’m guessing they felt it futile to fight Amelia’s bounce and decided that her pimping could generate enough complacency to shift her next week.

    If the powers that be truly believe that Janet is expendable then that could only point to Misha B as the top girl and that would be a real turnout for the books. In fact, it would be an inversion of the books so drastic that the books would have to be read from right to left like the Qur’an.

    Can anyone help me with this confusing girls category? I gave Kelly Rowland a call but she was too drunk to make any sense.

    • Dug

      Looking at Betfair now (00:53) with major doubts about Janet’s descent into danger, odds on other contestants look very nice for the elimination market. I can’t do it though. For the first week in a while, I’m waiting for the sing-off. 4.2 and 5.8 for Misha and Amelia, respectively, look good. However, the producer preference for the former and the pimp bouncing for the latter make them seem unattractive bets. As a believer in Janet’s fanbase, I’m with Daniel and Andrew on the notion that Misha seems like the tastiest bet to go but I’m not sticking anything down now.

  • I know exactly what they’re thinking. The showmakers know that out of the girls, Amelia and Misha are both more professional, capable and reliable than poor Janet is, as well as being better vocalists and performers. So this is a last ditch attempt, one of many so far this series, to quell Janet’s obviously significant public support. Why? Because they want to have have 4 reliable, strong acts in the final 4, and because they’d rather work with Amelia/Misha than Janet once the show ends. Janet got the full works tonight – bad song choices, dubious staging, red and black, unflattering camera angles, unrelentingly harsh critique etc etc. The massive pimping of Amelia was an attempt to replace Janet with Amelia as “the remaining girl who isn’t Misha”. Amelia’s their preferred choice. And as good as she is, it has to be said that Amelia was unfortunately slightly flat on her high notes this evening (in both songs), which could have done to have been more rounded. Gary was right to comment on the pitch issues.

    However, this strategy of trying so ardently to lose Janet may well backfire. She looked so lost, shaky and vulnerable up there on stage, especially during the jury’s critique, that people may well vote for her out of sympathy. I think Janet’s the weakest remaining act, yet I felt bad for her. She’s a very young girl up from rural Ireland there on a big stage in the public eye and it’s not easy. Yes, Amelia and Misha are also young, but they’re both much more mature and composed than the average girl their age, and much more in practiced in their art – whereas Janet is young for her age and apparently has never really sung much outside of her bedroom. So people may well vote out of sympathy – because they feel bad for her, protective of her, and because they recognise she needs votes this week more than ever. As such, and seeing as she apparently has such massive public support as it is, I actually wouldn’t be surprised if she wasn’t in the bottom 2 tomorrow. But if she is, she’ll go without a shadow of a doubt.

    Other thoughts: Marcus will sail through. Little Mix were good. Misha was good too but the song choices/arrangements could have been better (especially Killing Me Softly, which could have done to be more daring and better staged). I almost expect to see Misha in the bottom 2 again, sadly, with Janet or possibly with Little Mix/Amelia. Despite the pimping, Amelia may still not have enough public support. The same’s true of Little Mix – and they also had the first slot and mixed critique, especially regarding their first performance. (I actually thought they were excellent tonight.)

  • Rob

    I’m a journalist by trade and chomping at the bit to write a damning deconstruction of XF – could sit well in a broadsheet, I reckon, offering a full analysis of all the techniques they use to control the vote, and how frighteningly successful they are at it, but I’m torn over this because it remains such a great betting vehicle 🙂 What they do on the show is completely abhorrent because they are playing with these young people’s lives, who remain blissfully unaware of how they are being controlled by this hugely powerful, invisible hand, not to mention the control the show also exerts over its viewers. In this series they have taken it to new levels of manipulation and they do it because it works. All those who judge, Dermot, the production staff… they are all earning blood money as Cowell’s minions. Tonight’s show should have been subtitled, ‘Operation ensure Amelia avoids the bottom 2’ or ‘Operation Ensure Janet Is Irrevocably Damaged’. The judges sit there and unashamedly read from their pre-written scripts, and the other sickener is, all those thousands who tune in and naively believe everything they are being told, and then vote as directed to. This is propaganda in action. XF wields more power than despot regimes with dictators running them and these are multi-millionaires sitting there, gleefully holding the executioner’s sword, more than happy to play their part in each assassination. In short, it looks highly likely to me it’ll be a Misha/Janet b2 with Janet going 3-1 cos they won’t take it to deadlock (cos Janet will beat Misha on the pv). If Janet is given permission to continue in the competition by the powers-that-be, it’ll be 2-2 and deadlock, and she will limp to the final after Amelia gets both barrels next week. I’m hoping Little Mix win for my own personal bank balance but Cowell’s nefarious money-making sham is long overdue its place on the scrapheap.

    • sam

      Im glad theres at least one soul out there in the jurno world,chears rob (please ignore my other references to media rats its not aimed at you),it makes a very nice change to hear someone speek up on the whole -factor(or FIX -FACTOR) sham that is going on this year.
      ive watch this show for years but never ,i say never have i seen such blatent miss use of power than i am seeing this year on the show.
      This needs to come to light and let the general public see what is really going on under the simon cowell covers.
      if this show wanted anyones respect for fair play and honest desision makeing then they have totally lost it tonigh with this utter pantomime farce and disrespect for one persons own self respect.
      janet has been made a laughing stock for millions of people to see,and why cus those moronic show producers cant stand that some one has a mind of their own and wont do what they tell then to do,and i still was under the belief that we had the freedom of choice in this contry,well going on that tonight it seems not.if you dont do what simon cowell says your toast.so its his way or no way i think.
      but please do an undercover expo on this shambolic joke show and it might wake people up out there to what is really happening

  • Tim B

    Wow, what a show! Janet messing up the first song was such a shock! It really could go anywhere tomorrow night but let me give my take on it.

    LITTLE MIX were not good in their first performance. The sound levels were off and the song choices were poor. I was surprised to see them sent out first and I think it’s entirely possible the producers want them in the bottom 2 to give them a bounce to the final. It would definitely be a success if producers can simply get them to the final and I think this is the priority over them winning.

    They were good in the second song, although not outstanding.

    JANET messed up the first song so badly that I honestly think it will give her sympathy votes. It wasn’t in the PRODUCERS’ script to have her mess up like that so they can hardly be blamed.

    Am I the only one who thought she really pulled it back in the second song though? It was a BRILLIANT choice for her and she really went for it. Controversial, but I think she’ll be announced as safe.

    MISHA was fabulous in the first song but mediocre and forgettable in the Fugees song. However, the rap in the first song will not do her any favours plus she is coming down from a second sympathy bounce. The only thing I am confident on this week is that she will be in the bottom 2.

    MARCUS really impressed me in both of his songs. They want him through to next week for may obvious reasons. Surely the inherited Liverpudlian vote will see him through alongside his two (or one and a half) strong performances. Not to mention the mum vote, the granny vote…

    I was gobsmacked to see AMELIA in both of the pimp slots as I agreed with the general consensus that she would be next in line to go. Her first song was very impressive but I couldn’t help but think she sang her songs in the wrong order. Her Kelly Clarkson song was not brilliant and very shouty in places. Had they been the other way around I think she would have been easily safe but, the way I see it, she may be in danger. Perhaps the sympathy bounce will see her escape but we’ll see.

    So, my prediction for bottom 2 is MISHA B and LITTLE MIX. Next likely to fall in there would be Amelia.

    Finally, I don’t think anyone has noticed yet but Little Mix and Misha B are the two acts who sang next to the deadly JANET in the running order! As we well know, history has shown us that acts performing next to Janet are vulnerable of being eliminated.

    I’m so excited to see the result already!

  • taichou

    first time watching it im so frustrated, because i dont understand whats going on..
    none of the acts stood out… Littlemix performance was really mediocore, Marcus same, i think Devlin should get a lot of sympathy votes and wouldnt be surprised if she’s safe tomorrow although i must say its better for her if she’s gone tomorrow

  • Little Mix: being set up for sympathy bounce or strong enough to go through despite being first. Not worried about them.

    Misha B: almost certainly in the bottom 2. Likely bottom of the public vote 🙁

    Amelia: given the pimp slot, but she was flat on her high notes. Was it good enough? More to the point: do people like her and find her sympathetic, do they feel they know her? And do her performances have sufficient warmth? Janet, for all her problems, still has a lot of people’s hearts – she’s got this far in the contest primarily because she’s fragile and engenderssympathy/protective feelings. It’s actually not impossible that *more* people will vote for her than usual this week. Part of the Craig vote may have shifted to her too.

  • fiveleaves

    I beleive they’ve been far from harsh on Janet.

    She’s been treated with kid gloves throughout.
    Put in some truly shocking performances and yet been given fullsome praise.
    When she has been criticsed, apart from the oath Barlow, it has been very gentle.

    The likes of Craig who I can’t remember hitting a bum note in any performance all series was quietly dispatched with very little fuss from most people.

    Lucie Jones another one who was far more harshly treated.

    If Janet has the talent, then like Lucie she can use this platform for a successful career.
    Personally I doubt she will due to her thinking she’s better than she actual is and a sense of very offputting sense of entitlement.

    Lots of pockets speaking on this thread imo.

  • fiveleaves

    Apologies. The last bit should read.

    Personally I doubt she will due to her thinking she’s better than she actually is and a very offputting sense of entitlement.

    It is late……..

  • jashala

    I don’t understand how u can have a poor song choice for a guilty pleasure song, the song is suppose to be poor, are something u are afraid to admit u like, isn’t that the point behind Guilty pleasure.

  • jashala

    Im going with either two girls in the bottom, are a girl and Marcus

    My first option is Misha and Janet
    Second is Misha and Marcus

    But I’m leaning towards two girls in the bottom, I definitely think one of them have to go. Little Mix could also be in danger but I honestly feel there second song will have ultimately saved them from the bottom

  • misky knoodle

    I like marcus,marcus is a perfomer and nothing more and i find there is something old fashioned to his voice and i can t get passed that,i feel marcus has got a good chance of winning but to me he isn t a pop star.I believe they made a mistake in letting James michael go he had it all and proves he has by putting 3 covers on youtube as jamesmichaelmusic7.Im only putting this on here because would value Pete D opinions on James.Soz for not really coming up with much of an opinion.

  • CllrMick

    I’d never heard of Janet’s 1st song so looked for it on Youtube prior and instantly thought bad choice. It would have sounded bad for her even without the near vomiting on stage. Or maybe she realised at that time it was so bad that the nerves kicked in?

    On the plus side I think Janet was the only act that put in a better 2nd performance than the first. OK not hard against her first performance but I think all the others had a poor 2nd showing with Misha and Marcus both hitting bum notes and Amelia having to shout it out because she can’t hit the high notes. Notice how they have toned down her image to a softer look. Pink hair and heavy make up has gone.

    Good job we were allowed to vote after the completion of the first songs.

    Results night always brings a shock and I think this weeks shock is Janet is called out in the top 3. She still has a huge fan base and the worse she gets the more they vote. One tweeter over 100 times tonight with more tomorrow!

    So who is out? Obvious one of the girls has to go so I expect a 2 girl b2. That only leaves MB and AL.

  • CllrMick

    You know listening to Barlow’s final comments here after Janet’s 2nd song – “You’ve ignored everything I’ve said to you and come back and done your own thing and that is what we are looking for” and “It’s what we’re looking for, someone with a voice and she definitely does that”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEUcHTWmgwI

    So in a sing off with JD against MB or AL will he side with JD?

  • Pete D

    What the blinkin HECK was that all about tonight ?
    Just got home early hours from a gig (where I could frustratingly just SEE a tv through the bar counter in another room but was engineering a band in the main room).

    Without ref to any other act ‘yet’ (as I am still watching XF with a nice stiff malt …and well needed too after thus far through XF).

    I mean..JANET ?…MMM-BOP ?…HANSON ?
    Bwaaaaa haaaaaa haaaaaaaa
    Now I know for SURE that she is the deluded joke that I always had her marked down as (slight redemption last week). Well deserves to go (but STILL don’t think she will this week with her MASSIVE support).

    If that is a ‘guilty pleasure’, then I will continue with mine of pulling out all my toenails with a pair of pliers and sticking pins in my eyes. It is far less painful than listening to THAT complete load of tosh (AND also her second choice with so many ‘forced’ YODELS in it that I thought that I was watching ‘The Sound of Music’).

    Ruined my image of the Chillies for life.

    Just one more to get off my chest for now is THE SCREAMING PINK KARAOKE SKULL. She triggered off my tinnitus again and I never even had it before she came back. Anyone who thinks she is good must have their ears PAINTED ON (nuff said).

    Still have her down to go this week because she just doesn’t have the ‘earned’ long term support that the others have built up so far. A ‘flash in the pan’ support from waining mug voters proved it last week and too much to do now to catch up.

    I shall have nightmares tonight methinks.

  • Stephen

    hey guys, similar to anlytk my friends father is also doing a twiiter based analyis on twitter analysis with reference to X factor so maybe check it out if interested. http://xfactortracker.com/

    • tpfkar

      Hi Stephen,

      very interesting – I’d be interested to know some of the methodology here, particularly whether all tweets are seen as positive, and whether there’s any attempt to map twitter reaction to phone votes received.

      Thanks.

    • Cool, can you ask them to get in touch. Would appreciate a chat with people who do this for a living to see what they think of the work I’ve done 🙂

  • Pete D

    After watching the first bit of XF EXTRA, I think we have ALL been ‘RICK-ROLLED’ tonight.

  • malcolm

    A strange night, but let’s try and keep it real on here.

  • Simon "le happy chat"

    I reckon MARCUS is going to win.
    I said this when he was 7/2 to be top boy (kerching) and 25/1 to win the competition.
    Never mind the theories.
    Blessed are the meek.
    Especially the meek who can sing.

    • EM

      The problem was last night, through the first half of Lately, he couldn’t

      • Simon "le happy chat"

        That’s absolutely right EM
        Poor beginning because it wasn’t in his key.
        But came through ok and compared to some of the others he was a star.

        • Dug

          Marcus’s “key” has been revealed by another ballad – his worst performance since Russian Roulette. In fact, I’ve been paying attention and all the upbeat numbers he has chosen have centred around four or five musical notes withe a falsetto belter halfway through. As a person with money on Marcus for the win, I hope producers find a better way of skirting around the issue of his limited range. He will need to smash at least one “ballid” if he is to take the crown.

  • Lee

    Quick word on the potential bounce for Amelia…at this stage of previous series, there was no bounce. I’ve had a bet on Janet / Amelia B2 at 7/1 on price grounds, also had bit on Janet at 3s when VT was on, couldn’t believe it when she then forgot the words (if only Hanson had done the same!)

  • shoulders

    I wonder if LM in the death slot was decided at the rehearsals. Odd place for them when the show seems desperate to get them votes. I didn’t think the first song was very good, could it have been a deliberate plan to get that song out of the way before everyone had switched over from Strictly???

  • AlexK

    I can’t wait to see the voting figures this year. Absolutely intriguing. Slightly sad I know!

    • lolhart

      You’re not the only one. I reckon they will be a lot more surprising than last year’s. The only big surprise for me last year was that Matt Cardle topped the vote every week bar one.

  • sam

    going on what i see as odds,i may have read it wrong ,but anywho,if its a bottom 2 between misha v janet then can only see then picking the chosen one (and i dont mean janet) i mean they cant go back now and back someone that is clearly in my view anyway not wanted,janets only saveing grace tonight will be the very loyal voters and not the judges.
    looks like i might need to find a new horse cus mine seems to be on its last legs. bum! i thought i was going to get more from her than this.

  • abs

    I think giving Little Mix the death slot was doing them a favour … they were first to perform with the second song after the voting opened … and what better song to give them than one which plays on Jes’ insecurities …

    • fiveleaves

      I agree.
      It was also a song that was perfectly designed to appeal to women of all ages and we had the added bonus of the tears.

      It also means that they can give them the pimp slot and the full treatment next week, when they’ll almost certainly not have the insurance of the sing-off.

      It would also give them the momentum going into the final.

    • abs

      Having rewatched Little Mix’s perfomance and comments, I believe the producers have done their best to push the girls votes without making it too obvious:

      1. Past girl winners have been girls who come across as insecure but talented – this performance was all about how insecure these girls feel ( insecure also equals not stealing your bf)
      2. 3 out of 4 judges asking people to vote for them
      3. 4th judge giving what seem very neutral comments – one reason One Direction didnt win last year was it was so obvious the show was pushing them … the show must have learnt from this
      4. 4th judge commenting on their hard work and friendship … two extremely important factors in a group … think JLS
      5. Gary’s comments also emphasise what was being suggested in the VT – girls hugging each other and walking hand in hand shows their friendship and support to each other
      6. during Tulisa’s comments, Kelly’s hand is seen signalling the crowd to cheer more … quite unusual behaviour for a judge to do for an act not in their category (Kelly’s hand is also seen clapping during Gary’s comments)
      7. Tulisa highlighting this was a ‘real’ performance by the girls, translation … it may not have been vocally perfect as it was emotional. Further emphasised by Dermot who said the girls made Kelly cry (even though to me it did not seem like she was crying)
      8. first part of the perfomance girls were all sitting apart, almost giving each other their backs. as the song progress and they started singing together they moved a lot closer, the camera giving close ups to Jes only (probably waiting for the tears) .. could this be another way of showing how from 4 individual performers their friendship got tighter during the series?
      9. as said earlier .. this was the first performance after voting opened … at which point as well Strictly viewers would have seen all acts

      Also, Janet being after LM is no coincidence … believe Janet is who the producers want out, the ‘alone’ VT and Gary’s comment about ignoring his criticism, contrasting so much with the friendship and insecurities of the girls.

  • wiggle

    I agree that putting LM first isn’t necessarily a sign they were trying to dampen them due to phone votes opening half way through, and could also have been an attempt to ‘hide’ what was expected to be an underwhelming first performance.

    After Janet’s awful Jackson 5 rendition, giving her mmm-bop can only seem like an attempt to oust her from the competition. That said she made such a hash of it that it’s quite likely just to have backed-fired and boosted her vote with a rush of sympathy.

    Amelia being given a through pimping was a surprise.

    I would expect Misha to be a cert for bottom two, but who will join her? Janet should rightfully be B2, but her fan-base may well carry her through. Amelia I suspect has a much weaker fan-base, but pimping and strong ‘China in Your Hand’ performance just before the voting opened may help keep her out of danger. I think there’s a real possibility of Little Mix going B2, in which case Misha is gone.

  • Highlighted

    They are definitely looking to oust Janet this week. 2nd again in the running order, first girl to go for the 6th time out of 8 weeks, and the judges quickly quelled her what was IMO awesome 2nd performance without giving an actual valid reason as to why they thought it was bad. Louis said something about song choice, er, it was heroes theme thus meaning song choice is a void reason.

    They definitely wanted Amelia through this week for some reason. Pimping her to high heaven, and her awful 2nd performance and not been able to hit any high notes without shouting, yet no judge picked up on that, just Gary made a minor comment about it. Maybe they feel getting her through this week over Janet will allow themto get her out next week and have Misha in the final like they have wanted sine about week 4. No doubt Misha is a ready made star, just not likeable. She was the best and most consistent last night though.

    If Janet somehow escapes B2 this week despite all the producers have thrown at her, means she does have some backing somewhere in this land. However even if she does not go, I think the producers have won the battle in the end, I really doubt Janet will be topping the votes come the final, and I think the main aim was to stop her winning, getting her out before the final n favour for Misha is just an added bonus.

  • Kieran

    Do we know if it’s going to bottom 2 and then judges votes tonight or straight to the lowest votes is gone?

    • Jake

      I don’t think it will be a straight elimination. Even if someone they wanted is the bottom they would stop any chance of being able to pull a bottom 2 next week, and save Marcus/Little Mix if they are somehow bottom of the votes. (I am pretty sure they want those acts in the final over everyone else. Little Mix to be with a chance of winning, Marcus to give the final a male contestant and keep Gary with an act).

    • Noisy

      Hi Kieran,
      Dermot said there would be a bottom 2 sing off on last night’s show.

  • CllrMick

    I think all betting sites covering X Factor should carry a warning: Actual votes cast for each act does not necessarily reflect their performance on the night”.

    • Ron

      Exactly : I’m very surprised people think Janet is a goner based solely on given a bad performance of her first song.

      If people vote solely on song performances, how would that explain Matt Cardle topping the poll for nine weeks in a row last year? In fact, in the latter weeks there wasn’t that much change in the order in the closing weeks, suggesting each act had their own loyal fanbase. Based on that, Janet can very easily avoid the bottom 2 this week.

  • tpfkar

    Some more measured thoughts the day after a confusing night:

    1. Really good week for the steamroller and the good ship (Little Mix and Marcus for new readers) Some are saying that Little Mix are in trouble; I don’t believe a word of this. Every viable act has to come on early sometime, they did a good job (abs above puts it better than I could) and putting my model on Toby’s overnight numbers, I have them topping the vote. Good also for Marcus – not a single pink shirt on the VT but straight down to business and professional job from him.

    2. Will they get Janet? I think they will. When they’ve opened fire directly this series, they’ve hit the target (Nu Vibe, Sami, Sophie, Johnny, Kitty, Craig.) Whatever mistakes they’ve made this year, they’ve shown a real skill for skewering obvious targets. Toby’s overnight numbers also support this. My model involves weighting each contestant to reflect how much of their following is on twitter, and Janet’s weighting is more than double any other contestant (so 5 tweets for each of the others, 2 for Janet, I’ll tell you Janet is winning the vote) For her to be sinking on even this measure is major alarm bells.

    3. Next steps: If they get Janet this week, I’d expect them to have an easy ride shifting Amelia next time, which gives them their dream final.

    4. I’m bracing myself for a loss on the week, but I’ve also closed down my Janet positions on the win market, at a loss. Painful, but I think she’s going tonight and I’d rather close down while I can.

    5. I’m concerned with how the show is operating though. We notice all the tricks the producers play to influence us, but the last two weeks the allegations have been darker, messing with the contestants themselves. Last week, we have Craig being told he was on first only shortly before the show. Last night, Janet claimed she was about to throw up. Just nerves, really? If she does go tonight I’m sure she’ll have stories to tell. It’s one thing manipulating your audience, but I have a discomfort with how they have treated their contestants – their stars – throughout this series, I can understand sam’s outburst last night.

  • sam

    hi tpkar,i appreciate what you have said at the bottom there,it makes me feel some what better than i did ,as i know i did rather go over the top slightly(well alot actually) in my condemnation of this show with my over the top rants and to anyone who has been offended in anyway to my comments im truely sorry.

    see im just getting way to involved i think,and its something i made a mistake with in earlier posts from pete regarding his point on little-mix,and have said my sorries to him on that.
    i just cant see why this show has turned into this,it all used to been very entertaining to the outsider,likeme,even jedwood,and wagner as bad as they were never got this sort of treatment from the show,i think i just need to step back now and see it for what it is.

  • Nugget

    Well I did warn that they wanted Janet out, but were struggling to do it, she has a massive fan base and reginalvote though, tonight we will see just how strong the support she has is.

    I think LMix absolutely stormed the vote last week, hence the producers felt ok giving them an early slot, without putting them at risk. That said Lmix performance was at best average this week and they need to raise thier game if they are to win this outright.

    Marcus gave another fairly solid performance but nothing outstanding. His followers should be happy and comfortable about his safety for next week, in the unlikely event he hits bottom 2 he would be saved against any of the 3 girls, and a Lil Mix/Marcus bottom 2 is HIGHLY unlikely.

    Misha being pimped to the hilt to make her top girl, he has the voice but has she the likability to win this ….I still think not. Kelly will save her over either of her other two girls.

    Amelia held her own in what was a poor week, thats about it though, she still in my opinion is one step below top notch vocally and not good enough to win.

  • CllrMick

    Just done count of twitter followers for each act. I know it’s not definitive of voting intentions but gives a clue on fan base. Surprised MC is top and LM 4th though.
    1. MC – 319,119
    2. JD – 267,565
    3. AL – 240,290
    4. LM – 202,237
    5. MB – 150,923

    • Ron

      The jury is still out for me on just how big Little Mix’s fanbase really is. They’ve received a massive amount of hyping from the producers, but we just don’t know how solid their support is, beyond them being an obvious top 4 act.

      • Pete D

        Ron. Dermot reported quite seriously on XF EXTRA that they are definitely ‘trending’ with everybody now right across the board (even the Indie Rock bands he meets in his circles ).
        So it’s likely to be HUGE now and growing weekly.

        Two Spice Girls met and endorsed them too this week to fill their vacant gap in the ‘girl power’ market, so big pimping there from the ones who know the score first hand.

        • Ron

          I’s still a bit suspicious Pete as to why the producers are going to such lengths to hype them. It might suggest they are doing reasonably well in the competition but are not topping the poll or even that close to it. It does look like the producers and Syco are desperate to get them through to the final at all costs (perhaps in order to justify giving them a record contract after the show).

  • Uncle Si

    A curious show indeed. As with Eurovision, my suspicion is that performance on the night matters much less to the voter than does song choice and artist popularity. I can well believe that Janet has been storming the vote, because voters are voting for a sweet-seeming Irish girl with a lilting voice. Never mind bad the odd fluffed line.

    My thoughts are, from the producers’ perspective:

    Little Mix: still in favour, not un-pimped by any means. If a B2 bounce results then it’s no bad thing.
    Janet: trying to get rid, despite her inbuilt popularity. If Amelia can be made top non-Misha girl (respect to Wolfstar for this concept) then all well and good.
    Misha: pimp for all she’s worth, for a career.
    Marcus: pimp for all he’s worth, to ensure a bloke in the final, even though (I suspect) he’s doing fine in the vote.
    Amelia: pimp so that she might just get above Janet.

    As to who they’d save, surely they’d save Marcus over anyone, and save anyone over Janet.

    But then, nagging doubts… if Janet is doing so well then it means people like her, and surely the show isn’t going to remove an act that people like (spending money) voting for?

    I predict a second-in-a-row Amelia and Misha bottom 2, with Amelia to go. But who knows?!

  • sam

    anyone else think it would be a good idea to have a big brother style x-factor ,only in respect to allowing camares on then 24/7 then we could finally find out what is really going on behind close doors and allowing the acts to vote each other out ,then allow the public to vote one of them with no help from judges,or is this to far out and we could end up with a real suspect winner

    • Pete D

      Sam. Crazy idea but interesting and novel. All the crap ones though from the bottom up would vote out the best ones to give themselves a fighting chance. “So for that reason, I’m out”

      Don’t fancy the idea either of seeing MISHA in the Big Brother shower singing her other ‘guilty pleasure’, the Cheeky Girls ‘touch my bum’ (and with my best Harry Hill face on to side camera..”Erm no thanks luv, I think I’ll pass”).

      The several rear stage mirrors were enough for me and it put me right off my bedtime Weetabix.

      • sam

        mmmmm…..now i think about it pete,bad idea,the picture you just painted just put me off my nice sponge cake,the only reason i put it out there was 1(to lighten my atmos after major ranting and raveing last night..bad idea.. and 2)cant see the acts them selfs doing any worse of a job in voteing one of the bottom two off than the judges have this year.
        bring back simon,dani,and chezza it worked so much better even with all the cat fighting.

        • Pete D

          Sam. After just watching ‘Goldfinger’, a better idea would be an ‘ejector seat’ for the elimination each week.

          Finger nails down to a frizzle waiting for this week’s result. Not doing my ticker any good this, LOL.

  • Simon "le happy chat"

    MARCUS is going to win this competition.

    • Boki

      Another joke theory: Janet is actually a very smart girl and (unlike Craig) she reads sofabet. She knew what was coming this week from the producers so just before the 1st song she stuffed a little bit of her long hair deep into her throat. She almost puked indeed – better to be very bad than average, isn’t it 🙂

  • Noisy

    I can see Janet escaping bottom 2 this week (have there been any anti Syco campaigns to keep her in as this would clearly annoy them?) due to her fanbase and some sickness sympathy.

    Amelia fall into bottom 2 due to having smaller fanbase as late starter and sent home against any of the other acts.

    Betfair currently 8.0 seems good value when they’d clearly save Marcus/LM over her and I think also Misha (why pimp her so relentlessly if you’re not going to save her?)

    Only danger for me is Janet can’t get enough votes to avoid b2 and would go against anyone.

  • abs

    Did anyone notice how all contestants had a VT about their relationship with their mentor except Janet? Kelly didnt feature in Janet’s first VT, and had a one liner in her second … what a contrast to Misha’s VT!!! Also, Janet was the only one speaking throughout her VT …. maybe to reinforce the ‘boring’ idea in viewers heads?

    I think they’ll manage to get her into bottom 2 this week!!

    • Noisy

      They also showed her forgetting her words in the VT and when in the actual show she said she stopped singing as she was about to barf, they just showed Louis asking if she forgot them and her saying yes on the VT.

  • Highlighted

    Voting must be close for bottom 2 and looks like they are adding the final nail in Janet’s coffin with that VT.

  • Curtis

    No surprise in the bottom 2. Now they didn’t annihalate Janet last night just to chicken out of it tonight, so I’d get ready to lump on Janet to go.

  • Jack

    Bye Bye Janet! First on in sing-off as well…

  • Curtis

    Janet goes first. Lump more money on.

  • Mouseldinho

    Red and black treatment for misha? Only possible saving grace for Janet but reckon she’s a goner!

  • Pete D

    Anyone got an Easyjet Irish flight timetable handy ?

  • Curtis

    I think Janet is a clear example of why artists shouldn’t go on X Factor. The producers are not looking for artists, they’re looking for singing pushovers. That to me, can be the only reason why Janet has been sabotaged as she has been this competition. You look at the person who Janet was sent home against, Misha B. She’s been a complete pushover this series, changing her image for the producers. That’s what they’re looking for.

    • sam

      o so true my dear frind,o so true.
      said it before and ill say it again if this show get anymore cuthrout and malicious towards the contestance there going to need some medical staf on hand from now on cus this shows turned into a blood bath

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