We know nothing. Let’s not pretend otherwise. If we genuinely knew what was going on we’d be millionaires by now. In so many areas in life it’s tough to predict the fickle wants of the Great British Public, and again, if you can you’ll be rich. The sensational (but semi mothballed) site www.betsfactor.com seems to be on an incredible roll, but it might just be an (extremely) long list of lucky correct calls.
Keep that disclaimer in mind as you read the rest of this. None of us know anything, if we did we’d be betting far bigger stakes.
I’m Richard, I set up a blog last year called Betsfactor for a laugh, looking at the show and what they were up to. I loved Sofabet, they were always generous linking to the blog, this year they asked me to write a couple of bits, so why the hell not. This is one big, happy, TV betting site community after all.
After a succession of screw ups last year; at the start of this ‘season’, there was one thing that I thought they were going to try and bring to the show this year. To try and save the franchise. It’s what I’d call ‘perceived credibility’. Now, we’ve all got a friend who listens to 6music, reads the Guardian, drinks a tea we can’t spell and travels to Equatorial Guinea on holiday. The music they like is properly credible. Guitars, lyrics that weren’t written by a “writing team” and not a piece of computer software in sight. The credibility I’m talking about, is what a housewife in Croydon would feel was credible; not what your friend Yasmin, with her fair trade bike, would think was credible. By credible, I mean, authentic, not manufactured, original. So we’re looking for what the average viewer perceives as being credible.
If I had to guess, the second thing that has come to light, to try and save the franchise, has been an order from on high to “mix it up a bit, make it less predictable”. The Daily Star is like clockwork – it has the headline “Fix Factor” every 36 days on it’s front page, so “The X Factor is fixed” has been a common and very very lazy line for newspapers and Barry down the pub to spout out for many years now. There’s a difference between fixed and manipulated. It’s not fixed; but manipulation goes on all the time and it’s an easy thing to prove (see pretty much every post on Betsfactor last year!). They need to nip it in the bud, which is what they are doing this year, and why James Arthur has been Red and Blacked and Kye Fawked in the last two weeks; that’s why acts they want to slay are being put on towards the end, to “mix it up a bit”.
– Perceived Credibility
– “Mix it up a bit”
We’ve already had the disclaimers, but to repeat I am, not confident enough to say who I think will win at this stage.
I can say what I think the CURRENT league table looks like.
1. Jahmene (5/2 – looks long)- This is the contestant they want to get to the final and are helping as much as they can. He doesn’t write his own songs so isn’t as great for “perceived credibility” as the next two….
2. James Arthur (7/2 – about right) – I’m yet to be convinced that they want this guy to win. Writes his own stuff. Credible and real.
3. Ella – They are still throwing their weight behind her, for instance, which Britain’s Got Talent “oh my ^£%* how the hell did we get him winning” song did they give her last week?! Writes her own stuff. But….. Bombshell: At 2.2, I’d oppose her. I don’t think she’ll win it based on what I’ve seen so far. This is not a tip, just an evolving opinion! Why? She’s off key too often and a bit too young, we’ve also seen way too many favourites not win public votes recently (Janet, the people on the Voice etc).
Plus. Lucy – She is the most obviously “perceived credible” candidate. But with uncertainty over whether she’ll return to the competition, I’m not giving her a league table position at the moment.
Two of the final three are songwriters in their own right – boom – perceived credible final.
Mix it up a bit:
The rest just aren’t in any order at all. They just don’t care who goes when now, because they need to mix it up. Who cares if Union J go in week 4, they won’t make the final, so let’s “Mix it up a bit” and nuke different contestants each week. For punters this is proving a nightmare – but equally there is great value out there – long odds shouldn’t be ignored. Small stakes on a couple of longer shots might be worth it, – they certainly were last week, and in other weeks (eg Melanie in the singoff).
Boyblands (UJ 20-1 D3 66-1 – About right)- Both had dodgy staging last week, they just don’t care and want them gone. By ramping one then the other each time, it’s a lot easier to split the vote and therefore make sure they avoid the risk of either doing well. Cowell will not want any competitor to One Direction at the moment, although Louis probably fancies another crack at it, given how emotional he got when he saw his opportunity to manage a new boyband drain away last Sunday.
Christopher (40-1 – a little too long)- They’ve created a monster here. Even before the show began they said to the Great British public, who were desperate to start spending 35p on someone… Here are the 13, 14, 15 and 16th best contestants, which one do you really want to spend a week getting behind and supporting? Liverpool and someone who misdialled in Dundee, picked Christopher. Because people picked the underdog, they will go on supporting him, because the first 35p they spent was on Christopher, they can’t switch to someone else and admit they were wrong and that they wasted 20 lots of 35p. The producers have decided that they will tolerate it for the moment, get the 80’s stuff on, drip drip that he’s cheesy; he’s a useful “Rylan II” to keep the judges arguing.
Rylan (80-1 – about right) – He’s got two or three weeks left before he’s surplus to requirements, with Christopher still on the scene, he’s expendable from anytime now, but one more “judges save” against Christopher or Kye would be ideal…maybe this weekend! This ballad could be the turning point one way or the other.
Kye (80-1 far too short!) – So completely expendable it’s embarrassing. This week is way too unpredictable, but I would say it’ll be Bye Kye, “you’re going to have a great career ahead of you” as the most likely of many possible outcomes.
This is just one person’s opinion on a snapshot of where we are right now, today, feel free to pull it to pieces, and if you’ve not enjoyed the planet’s greatest blog – Betsfactor – go and have a read…. You never know, I might be working on a couple of new theories to maybe come out before the end of the series.