US X Factor 2013 Finishing Order Prediction

[We’re delighted to welcome Nissl, whose astute comments on UK X Factor articles this year have quickly become much-anticipated, as our US correspondent. Here’s Nissl’s take on season 3 of the US X Factor, in the traditional Sofabet format of a wildly speculative finishing order prediction. The live shows start tomorrow].

In what may be its final season, the American iteration of X Factor has been strikingly straightforward in its use of pimp slots, narrative VTs, and so on to highlight favored contestants. Unsurprising, I suppose, as I’ve never seen “death slot” or “deramping” in the comments section of an American blog. It really emphasizes how much punters and internet culture have impacted UKXF in the last couple of years!

Despite the degree of naked manipulation, however, thus far I have found the judges’ comments to be surprisingly on point and fair other than papering over the vocal limitations of the small handful of favored acts, as always. Overall, Simon’s been pretty upbeat and mellow and is letting the other judges mess around with him to a striking degree, but he still gets extremely catty now and again.

Kelly Rowland has been quite fun and relaxed and has added a hint of a supportive motherly air to the proceedings. Demi Lovato has been passable if bland by US judge standards except when she’s asked to act to a script, at which point she’s laughably bad. Paulina Rubio has been largely useless.

Although I’ve been unable to verify it via Google, I’m pretty sure from promotional info that the first week of the live shows will see the judges eliminating one of their own contestants each, as in the 2011 UK season. I’m not sure exactly what the producers are thinking given that we just had judge eliminations in the four-chair challenge and this sort of twist did not exactly go down well in the UK.

Perhaps they are simply desperate to generate some buzz, any buzz coming back from the baseball break. The USXF has once again shown a significant ratings decline from the previous season, although it remains a very close second or third in the key 18-49 demo against tough competition. It is now in major danger of being cancelled, although such an outcome is far from guaranteed given Fox’s numerous other issues.

Honourable mentions:

Ashly Williams: Ashly’s elimination during the 4-chair challenge was the one that induced the annual wave of angry internet commenters threatening to quit reality shows forever. Given that she’s 24 and has a moderate stage presence at best, she doesn’t seem highly commercial, so I’m not surprised they decided to remove her very good voice. At one point Simon discussed having a wildcard on Twitter, and I think she would have won it and probably gone on to make the upper half of the field, but I’m pretty sure that talk has dissipated.

Timmy Thames: Simon sent out an irritated Tweet indirectly criticizing Paulina for letting the 13-year-old go. He was quite raw, unsurprising given his age, but beyond the fact that he possesses pretty, doe-like eyes I don’t necessarily see the massive upside that Simon apparently does. I don’t believe he’ll be back this year even if there’s a wildcard, and don’t expect him to make much of a run if he is. He might be very well served in a boy group in a year or two.

Glamour: This trio of 12 year olds was incredibly raw but showed a ton of potential in terms having soulful, powerful voices and good interpersonal chemistry. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see them going places in a couple of years.

Yellow House Canyon: This country duo had nice charisma and chemistry but was just short of commercial in vocal quality. And with producer favorite Restless Road in the field, they had to be cleared. Still, there might be something there.

13th (overs): James Kenney

A nice enough average Joe thirty-something with a solid voice who gave a decent performance that connected reasonably well during the 4C challenge. Is that enough lukewarm, anonymous adjectives for you? I cannot imagine that the producers have any real interest in him and his presence muddies up Jeff Gutt’s narrative. Rachel Potter could also easily go here if she turns in another bomb of a performance.

13th (groups): Sweet Suspense

A frankengirlband trio that doesn’t really work very well on any level except maybe being shopping buddies and ticking a few Fifth Harmony demographic boxes. Simon made no secret of his disinterest in the challenge round, nearly sending them home in the final group switch ahead of his (also dire) frankenyoungboyband. Despite that, I think at least one of the 14-year-olds might have been a perfectly usable girl group member in a few years.

Dear Simon: in the future, I recommend you try to only get 16+ year olds (ideally 18+) for frankengroups that have to do more than look attractive. Forming a new group is a very difficult endeavor, especially on a reality show’s.compressed timeline! Also, please realize that while trios – your preferred size this year – make it easier to find enough decent singers, they also leave you absolutely nowhere to hide anyone who is at all marginal.

13th (girls): Khaya Cohen

It’s between Khaya and Danie Geimer to go here. Both have good but not truly exceptional voices, limited stage presence, and a usable but not all that strong girl-next-door narrative. Khaya’s a bit more of a threat to the producer favorites with her Adele-esque vocal stylings and better likability and she was on early in her group during the challenge, so I’ll make her the mild favorite to go. Whichever gamma girl survives could easily sneak into the top half on vocal ability depending on her degree of VT assistance.

13th (boys): Carlito Olivero

Probably my favorite of the three non-alpha boys due to his moderate polish and stage presence. However, Simon has made no secret of his disinterest. I suspect it might be due to the fact that Carlito is 24 and seems to have already received at least one commercial push from someone based on Youtube. He’s a mild standout at best from the other two non-alpha boys, and none of the three are particularly good, so I think that they’ll send him packing with little controversy. However, I would not be wildly surprised to see any of the non-alpha boys go out here.

12th: RoXxy Montana

Non-favored groups have done pretty terribly on the US X-Factor too, haven’t they? This is a solid but not particularly great trio of sisters in their early 20’s with limited commercial potential. They’re too urban for middle America but lack any urban edge that’s likely to excite the kids. One of the girls has a great voice, so I do wonder if they were put through with an eye towards separating her as a soloist after the show without engendering too many hard feelings. Although to be fair, the competition in the groups category was not exactly stiff this year, so they probably deserved the slot regardless.

11th: Rachel Potter

The 29-year-old country singer had a pretty good audition but a poor performance in the challenge round that she was called out on by the judges. She belongs in the finals off of her audition performance, I suppose, but I don’t think the producers will ultimately have much use for her unless she delivers her top performance every week, which seems unlikely. I just don’t see her connecting to and maintaining much of a base, and her exit will clear the country vote for Restless Road.

10th: Carlos Guevara

Another boy who’s pretty limited in every dimension, I’m not sure what Carlos has that will pull votes unless some Latino voters are bound and determined to vote along strict demographic lines (doubtful) and Carlito’s out. Perhaps there’s a certain Ed Sheeran quality to his stage presentation? Regardless, I’m not seeing it, but then I doubted Luke’s appeal at the start of the UK season.

9th: Tim Olstad

Yet another boy I think has limited potential in pretty much every domain, but the crowd liked him enough to force Paulina to keep him during the challenge. I can see that he will at least have some appeal to the mom crowd if nothing else. His chubby-cheeked, upper Midwest pleasantness should see him through a handful of weeks.

8th: Danie Geimer

A smart girl with a good voice but very limited charisma. To date the producers have been awkwardly working the nerdy, down-to-earth girl angle extremely hard in the VTs and judges’ comments. While this is an astute reading of current American cultural trends, I’m afraid Danie ultimately lacks the likability to pull it off. Still, she should be easy enough to push a little way with helpful VTs. She also seems like an ideal candidate to take for a bit of a ride, as she poses no threat to the favorites while adding moderate singing talent to the lineup.

7th: Jeff Gutt

A rocker dad and last year’s controversial rejection. We’ve heard that he’s 37 and that this is his last, last chance about as much as the UK has heard Nicholas is 16 at this point. Speaking as a big rock fan, I don’t think he’s particularly great, as he’s forcing so much he looks liable to burst a blood vessel at any moment. I also find his lack of perspective a bit annoying. However, he’s got a lot of energy, a decent story that garners symapthy, a definite base, producer help, and a distinct position in the field to himself. That ought to carry him into the top half. I would assume producers will deramp him and see him off before he troubles the acts they view as having real commercial potential.

6th: Alex & Sierra

The most intriguing couple group I’ve seen, this pair has really good voices, “get it” in terms of meshing vocally, and in general come across very well. Despite their talent, I question whether they have a demographic base in the US. Still, there’s a first time for everything, and Simon seems interested in at least giving them a shot. There’s something about their theatrical cutesy PDA I find ever so slightly grating, but I’ll be tossing them the bulk of my apparently free (?) internet votes in the early weeks as I find groups far more interesting than soloists and feel they might have a bit of legit musical potential.

5th: Lillie McCloud

This 54-year-old diva has the only great voice on this year’s show and probably the best stage presence to boot. And well she should, considering her multi-decade recording career. Shockingly, this has somehow escaped the attention of the producers to date (and most of the entertainment sites as well, as the US lacks a powerful tabloid culture.) How the producers approach this matter will be interesting to watch, as it will require some delicacy.

In any event, I’m pretty sure they’d love to see Lillie stay until fairly late to boost the overall talent level but “complete her journey” before the final. I believe the USXF voting audience skews young enough that they won’t have a problem seeing her off, but she may be good enough to bump any favored acts that don’t connect well to their intended bases.

4th: Josh Levi

Far and away the alpha boy in the field in pretty much every way. However, while he seems good at everything, he’s not truly exceptional at anything, and at the end of the day there’s something just a bit anonymous about him for a favorite. This is particularly true in USXF, where the top boy isn’t at all a lock for the top 3. However, I can certainly see a scenario where he comes out and owns the stage from the first week due to his drive and overall talent level.

Commercially, I think Josh might be best served anchoring a group, at least to get launched, due to the mild anonymity problem. Perhaps stick him with Timmy Thames and Astro from last year, maybe one more, and you have a very nice soft, young urban boy group. But the boys category needed *some* quality this year, so he’ll be forging ahead as a soloist.

3rd: Ellona Santiago

Returning from her rejection as a member of dire frankenkiddieband inTENsity two years ago, 16-year-old Ellona has shown great stage presence and has star looks. Her voice is pretty powerful if still a bit raw and shouty. She’s also got good charisma but can sometimes come off slightly overconfident.

One of the clear producer favorites, she fits a demographic niche in the commercial market as a Filipina who should appeal to Latinos and Asian-Americans out of the gate, and she has all the necessary attributes to go far assuming the judges ignore the occasional rough vocal patch. However, I’m doubtful she’ll scoop up enough votes to get over the line against the other chalk in the end. After the show, I’d give her perhaps a 20-30% chance of breaking through commercially, which is actually pretty good considering the track record of reality shows in the US.

2nd: Restless Road

Simon’s extremely commercial looking country frankenMANband (good bit of marketing there.) These guys nail a big market gap, and while none of them are exceptional soloists, the combined result is actually pretty listenable, at least when it can be made out over the screaming girls. They don’t look 100% comfortable on stage yet, but their chemistry seems sound, at least by frankengroup standards.

With a field likely to be entirely cleared of other country acts early on, they’ve got a wide open… road… to the final three. Still, groups have proven to have an exceedingly difficult time getting over the top on any XF, and I doubt their ability to connect with the audience beyond being teenage man candy.

1st: Rion Paige

A 13-year-old with a good voice, a highly charismatic personality, a good stage presence, and a marked physical disability. If there’s anything I’ve learned from past US reality shows, it’s that Americans absolutely love voting for inspirational disabled contestants, so she’s my pick to win.

From a commercial standpoint, I think the producers might prefer she slip behind RR and Ellona. Thus, they may de-emphasize her story in the final weeks and subtly key on some unevenness in her performances. (I thought her challenge performance was very good, but her audition only middling, though it was of course praised to high heaven.) But the producers will have to tread very carefully indeed if they take this tack, and I doubt it will be enough.

Commercially, it’s hard to judge Rion’s potential due to her age. (Heard anything from Carly Rose Sonenclar lately, anyone?) In the near to medium term I can see her sticking around the US pop culture scene, perhaps as a minor celeb on the Christian music circuit or a supporting actress on a Disney show, but I somewhat doubt she’ll be an instant pop star. I’d bet her first post-show album will at least sell a bit, though.

Agree? Disagree? As ever, do let us know below.

23 comments to US X Factor 2013 Finishing Order Prediction

  • Guildo Horn Forever

    Hi Nissi,

    Wow! I love your preview. A good read that’s that very best of combinations: comprehensive and insightful.

    Will contribute an engaging comment (or two!) later, when I have more time.

  • Lia

    Hi, I have been watching XF US and do find it less cynical to a certain extent. I think the American public is more used to Idol and the fact the contestants choose their own songs helps the trust and avoids the feeling of sabotage, but Idol has been criticised for the old tired themes and extremely short song lists the contestants are forced to choose from.
    Kelly is as great as she was in UK auditions when she was around. Her lack of involvement and week long disappearance did her in. I’m hoping her being in home turf brings what was missing when she was here.
    Demi does try to be constructive and is right a lot of the time, except when she’s swooning over fit guys. I agree Paulina is useless and that’s why her comments have been cut most of the time. Some of her English is weird to say the least (it was “peachy” instead of pitchy being one of the most forgivable ones and “I wasn’t blow out” one of the least) and this is coming from a Brazilian who speaks English as a second language.
    Simon is Simon, with his best comments, wit and cattiness. I do miss him, especially when I have to endure Funsponge Borelow drag every bit of happiness out of every contestant.

    I kind of agree with your assessment of the finishing order. Rion is certain to go far with the great combination of decent talent, great personality and powerful back story. Simon is very invested in Restless Road and it shows more than maybe he would like to. When this happens the act usually does very well, even if they don’t win (1D anyone?). Ellona is good. Probably one of the best vocalists but the tendency to throw Celine/Whitney/Mariah on singers of her calibre usually does them no favours as the old fashined stigma hangs over like it did to Carly Rose (mind you that was really was old fashioned and the only attempt to make her appeal young like a 13 year old should felt so awkward it was painful to watch).
    Bottom side, can’t really disagree with James Kenney but not eliminating Rachel Potter sooner rather than later would be a risk considering how badly she was booed in the 4C challenge and the audience kept on asking for her to be switched out. By the way, did anyone else love how the audience got involved in the US, putting fingers up with numbers saying who they wanted out? I don’t think producers quite expected that or they might have given out cards with numbers 1 to 4 in them.
    I do like Khaya and Danie but I know their awkwardness on stage will be a hard sell.
    Jeff Gutt I sometimes love, I sometimes hate. Lillie McLoud, THE best singer this year but her style is her age. Tough road. Her professional past has leaked and you just have to read one of the many blogs that cover the show (mj, rickey, tvline) to know about it. I’m sure producers are well aware of it and it’s not against the rules, so we’ll have to wait and see what the plans are for her.

    I just hope it’s a good show and that it’s not cancelled.

    • Nissl

      Hey, thanks for reading (both Guildo and you!) I know what you mean about Simon and his investment in Restless Road. I didn’t mention it, but I noticed that he didn’t run the usual rejection script past frankengroups have had this season. He just called them in and asked them to join the band. Was that a (probably correct) judgment that any of them crying would be bad for their brand? A new straightforwardness?

      I’ll be interested to see what he does with frankengroups in his next season, wherever that may be.

  • Daniel

    Even those not intending to get involved in USXF this year should watch the following clip for an indication of how things are done differently in the States. It’s the most recent Restless Road audition clip:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LVVH1R6ED6g&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Cowell is being very straightforward in showing they’re his Plan A. There’s no attempt to hide it, unlike the false storylines given to Tamera (the closed-room duo, forgetting her words in the arena, Nicole’s doubts at judges’ houses).

    Here, we’re already being told their individual names, the country manband niche they intend to fill, and Simon can’t help but look pleased as punch at the hype that’s already been created. No wonder I keep calling them Ruthless Road.

    • Nissl

      I’m curious whether any of that would come back to the UK with Simon if he returns next year. I suppose you all have some indication from BGT (which I understand he’s on but haven’t watched.)

      Ellona is another good example. During her audition Simon mouths “wow” and tells one of the other judges “that’s the one” before comments started. Then he immediately tells her she’s the girl he’s most interested in working with. Compare to Cher Lloyd in 2010, where he made it clear that he liked her but wasn’t nearly as direct.

  • Hi Nissl, very interesting article. I’ve had an investment in Rion winning, mainly because her story is the most powerful. Please could you tell me about some of the inspirational disabled contestants who have done well before her?

    • Nissl

      I was taking a bit of license for the sake of brevity in implying it’s happened a lot. However the first season of Big Brother – the only season Americans were allowed to vote, if I’m not mistaken – saw a contestant who had lost a leg walk away with it. And lots and lots of disabled folks pop up on shows like Extreme Makeover Home Edition. This may be the first test of this idea in a singing show setting, though.

      By the way, that season of Big Brother is another interesting indicator of UK/US differences. American voters swiftly and ruthlessly targeted anyone doing anything controversial, leaving only the dullest contestants (and forcing them all to be as bland and pleasant to each other as possible.) Salon has some writeups of that season that get increasingly hilarious as the show gets duller and duller. I understand that many contestants in UK Big Brother actually go far by causing drama.

      • Lia

        Don’t forget about people like Lazaro Arbos who stayed a lot longer than deserved on AI because of his stutter. He had to really suck to lose favour. That could benefit Carlos Guevara with his Tourette in other seasons but I think Rion will just steamroll him this time around.

  • lolhart

    I think Restless Road have a very good chance of winning. But I’m sceptical about how they will fare after the show. The country music scene can be very cliquey and they like to be seen as “authentic”. I can’t see them embracing a group that Cowell put together on a reality show. I know people will cite Carrie Underwood from Idol but she’s definitely an exception and it took a while for her to be accepted. Admittedly, I haven’t been watching avidly this year. From a viewer’s perspective, The Voice is a lot better.

    • Rion has the pop/country thing going on too!

    • Cade

      Teenage girls do not care about Restless Road’s “authenticity” one iota.

      I suspect they will enjoy Emblem3 level success.

      Tate Stevens’ “authenticity” didn’t help him sell his album or prevent him from being dropped.

      • Nissl

        Yep, pretty much this, in my opinion. They’ll get as much respect as any other boyband but it won’t hurt their sales.

        I think they might do a bit better than Emblem3 due to enhanced backing from Cowell and their very clear niche in the boyband ecosystem.

  • Nissl

    One last set of thoughts heading into the season…

    Girls: Khaya was in fact much better than Dani, who was red & blacked and got no stage support. Warning sign for Rion that she was way behind in the tweets?

    Boys: Wow did I call that wrong. Thought Josh would be protected and Tim also seemed set up by the production. Guess I shouldn’t be reading so much into Simon’s interest levels. Or maybe they just ultimately weren’t interested in any of the boys. Maybe Josh will get a group now.

    Overs: Lillie looked pretty weak tonight. Jeff was much improved. Rachel was great. Uneven, or has she figured it out?

    Groups: I actually bought that Simon was conflicted. RM and SS both improved a lot, though SS was raw on the end of lines. Would have kept RM, who were far better than Miss D. But oh well, their Twitter figures were awful so they weren’t going far anyway. Probably should have been a warning sign that SS got doors with each of their names on them. Restless Road was the worst vocally.

  • Fudd

    Sweet Suspense had the name tags, bright colours, an uptempo performance and good song choice – they’re definitely being pimped and Simon’s indecision at the end was just to hype their popularity further; in my mind there’s no doubt he was going to send them through but anything for a bit of drama. Restless Road had massive help from the backing vocalists but I do think they have it in them to challenge. Alex and Sierra will be given a sickly sweet song choice and staging as soon as their time is up.

    Carlito was the surprise of the night for me though I shouldn’t be surprised by the support he was given as I’m sure he appeals to the female and gay audience in the key demographic. Carlos was given enough to get through but I was surprised that Tim got through. Paulina seemingly still doesn’t know his surname – is this meant to be a ploy to get rid of him early? So dull his mentor doesn’t know his name? Simon kind of did the same thing with RoxXy Montana by referring to the ‘one in the middle’. Josh wasn’t dire but wasn’t great; the usual cannon fodder.

    As was Danie who screeched her way through the song, something which was overlooked by the judges but no matter. Ellona was always going to be a cert but, like with Carlos they just gave her enough to get through acceptably. They already seem to be deramping Khaya with the ‘wall’ comments unless they’re building her up for a breakthrough performance mid-season. Interestingly at the start of the show, when looking at the tweets at the top of the show Mario said she was trailing behind when it was actually Rion struggling – I’m wondering if that was a mistake or deliberate? I’m assuming it must have been a slight shock to the powers-that-be that Rian was so low and calling it out would have surely seen an improvement in her figure. Could she be a surprise bottom two act next week if others don’t pick up on her seeming lack of popularity?

    Jeff ‘my little boy’ Gutt was a cert the moment he turned on the emotional blackmail; the biggest irony of his tug on the heartstring being that James Kenney has two young daughters so two hearts were ‘broken’ rather than one. I’m sure they will lay on the father edge thick through the competition until they’ve had enough of him. I’ve reached that moment now. Rachel bounced back after a dire chair challenge performance with something quite natural but no more ‘upbeat’ than either Tim or Danie’s performances which had Simon and Demi stating there was a lack of edge. A fault has also been pointed out with Lillie – another case of an early deramp; maybe pointing her towards the stage rather than the recording studio?

  • Fudd

    Thank you for the original blog by the way, Nissl. It’s a great read. 🙂

  • Lia

    Haven’t watched the show yet. Some surprises there but I’ll wait to comment on my impressions.
    Most surprised with the fact that I read Rachel Potter was well ahead on the online thingy/5th judge even before she performed. I thought the booing throughout the 4C challenge would keep her down. Or maybe so little people were actually using the app that her family managed to get her that high. LOL

  • Great post.
    I didn’t watch the auditions + 4 chairs challenge and only started with the live shows and I have to say, there were barely 3-4 good performances out of 16. the level of talent this year in US is extremely low, compared to last year (which was probably the best XF year in the last 3-4 years of any XF in any country). For me the standout performances were from the the Overs, especially Jeff and Lillie. Except from Tim, all the boys were pretty inexistent, as were the groups (although the duo have potential). That comment from Simon on Restless Road looked really forced and he’s obviously trying to push them like E3 last year.
    the way they’ll push some contestants and neglect others will depend on the public votes next week. After last year’s unexpected winner they’ll try to push all the other 3 categories, girls and groups mainly, and I can see their ideal final, 3. Jeff 2. Restless Road 1. Rion

  • Nissl

    Disaster this week. Awful ratings that virtually guarantee the show’s cancellation coming back from the break, plus they put up the wrong voting numbers and had to do a second night… on which almost everyone sounded much better, actually. It made me wonder whether XF’s increased stage act actually hurt it in the US by reducing the perceived vocal quality of its acts relative to other shows. That said, clearly the Fox baseball break did some damage as well. But what a terribly produced show in general. The re-insertion of Josh Levi was the most hamfisted segment, but there were many. This show deserves to go, and about the only things I’ll miss should I move on to another singing show are Kelly’s judging and the presence of a group category.

    Quick comments on a few notable acts the last couple weeks, if I don’t mention anything my first impressions stand:

    Josh Levi – Good vocally both times this week; apparently he can sing well or dance well but maybe not do both at the same time. Hardly damning at age 15. Saddled with an awful coach.

    SS – Shocked that they were actually fairly good and gelled vocally when not putting on a big show. Couldn’t believe I threw them a few votes. Really non-helpful comments from a rattled looking Simon, who didn’t even say they sang decently but just pleaded with the audience to remember previous weeks.

    Khaya – Killed it when she didn’t have to move, first goosebumps performance from anyone on the US version this season for me. Very easy for them to bump her whenever they want: just make her move for a couple weeks. But maybe they won’t if she keeps this up vocally.

    Rion – Middling performances that haven’t lived up to her challenge one, and warning signs in just about every support metric out there.

    Carlito – Great uptempo, poor in ballads; the emoting just doesn’t work.

    Rachel – Great with slow songs, poor uptempo. I assume Simon is just playing that he hasn’t figured this out.

    Lillie – Being dampened as “dated,” perhaps being targeted as the first over to go, but it’s not wildly undeserved.

    Carlos – Targeted to go in every way possible this week.

  • Lia

    That was painful and with the voting snafu it just got worse.
    Bringing back Josh Levi was pointless but reinforces how useless Paulina is. Don’t they audition this people? Obviously not, after Britney Spears.

    Boys – Generally weak. Josh has potential but I think he needs more time. Carlito is limited, Carlos is just bad and Tim is oooooooold.

    Girls – Ellona is great. She’s the only reality contestant I’ve heard hit the Titanium chorus in her head voice. She needs to learn about nuance but girl can sing and perform. Rion pulled one out of the bag singing Lady Gaga. That was powerful and the kind of performance she needs to keep going. Her vocals are limited but she brings a lot of emotion, drawn from her back story. Khaya has a different voice but she comes off as awkward. A couple more years would have done wonders.

    Overs – Lillie, oh dear. That second song was nasal and all wrong. Jeff is an old fashioned rocker and I do love that. I’m not sure if that would be commercially viable. Probably not. I just don’t like Rachel. She can be technically great or whatever, but I will not like it.

    Groups – Simon is blinded by Restless Road’s commercial potential and is desperately shooting excuses for their poor vocals. Problem with the track? Really, Simon? He did the same thing last year relegating 5th Harmony to beta behind the cocky Emblem3 when they could have given more surprises like Anything Could Happen. Sweet Suspense can do well given the right material. No more I don’t care crap. Alex and Sierra are so good it hurts. They know who they are, know what their sound is and I hope they have a career. I love the quirkiness.

  • Nissl

    Carlito, SS, and Tim targeted for B3, but I don’t think the show would mind losing Lillie either. All of the overs are starting to be softened up, actually. I continue to see a glimmer of potential with SS, but they seem destined to go. Maybe the best act when they came on in the show in terms of what they did with what they were given, I thought, but awful song choice, staging, and camera work. That was also Tim’s best performance, but it still wasn’t as good as the stars. I’m curious to see who they will save if they get their desired B3.

    Not sure what Simon is doing with A&S. Seems to be torpedoing his own groups, perhaps because the other judges aren’t competent enough. Perhaps he’s playing with the idea of Khaya joining a final four of Ellona, Josh, and RR.

    Josh definitely showed something there. I still think it’s more of a sure thing for him to be in a boy group for a couple years after the show, but he’s got a ton of potential.

    Unpleasant sniping from the judges, didn’t enjoy that much.

  • Gamblebot

    The head of a UK Sofabet follower would explode with that staging!

  • Lia

    As I suspected Simon screwing his own category in order to get Restless Road to win. His commercial preconceptions are blinding him and the worst bit is he’s not helping RR either as his song choices have been bad to awful. He doesn’t even like country so he’s far from getting the country trio right. He’s criticised both Sweet Suspense and Alex and Sierra after really good performances, making them believe they had done badly. Where’s the bit in the memo that says you should help your own acts? Didn’t he get it? Sweet Suspense got loaded with I Love it and Mickey. Really? Not even Jedward…
    The result is that the weakest acts escaped B3 completely. Carlito got sympathy votes from Simon being to harsh and Tim may have got some from crying VT.
    Producers (this includes Simon) better start shooting at the right targets meaning more disposable, never in million years commercial acts. They have a few.

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