Hannah Barrett can’t get any satisfaction on X Factor. She’s tried, and she’s tried, and she’s tried, and she’s tried. But she’s hit the bottom two twice and appears on borrowed time.
Last week, producers did everything for her: a sympathetic VT, decent song choice, good staging and styling, and it still wasn’t enough to avoid the singoff. Samantha does a good job of describing how bad this week’s song could be for her. As a result, Hannah fully deserves her position at the head of the elimination market.
It’s interesting to extrapolate a best case scenario and ask what happens as a result. There are precedents: Rachel Adedeji and Katie Waissel, who had both been in the bottom two more than once already, bounced very high with a tearful, “why is it that however hard I try I can’t seem to get people to like me”, VT.
The problem for Hannah is that if producers successfully use this strategy to bounce her a second time, it could leave them with a bottom two they’d rather avoid – Tamera Foster and Rough Copy – the two most consistently pimped acts of the live shows so far. Given that possibility (who would go – Tamera?), they may feel it’s better to cut Hannah loose altogether.
It would be no surprise to see Tamera in the bottom two. She’s coming off a sympathy bounce this week, and she’s been given the strangest song choice of all – Shirley Bassey’s ‘Diamonds Are Forever’. It’s old-fashioned and in the context of X Factor, repetitive and meandering. In short, it’s much more ‘Wishing On A Star’ than ‘Ain’t Nobody’.
Some of our commenters agree. EM puts it well: “The lyrics are Bond theme daft, no depth, there’s no big peak in the melody, it’s a song for a woman of life experience. Coupled with Tamera’s usual style the whole thing screams disconnect.” Izzy makes some similar points. Meanwhile, Boki has set out his reasons for believing that a Hannah/Tamera bottom two suits producers.
Rough Copy’s song choice of Coldplay’s ‘Viva La Vida’ has Guildo Horn Forever concerned. We do have have a precedent of a “vocally suspect group” singing this song, and that was One Direction. In the same year, Cher Lloyd put a much more urban twist on it at bootcamp. It will be interesting to see what the Rough Copy approach will be – Gavster suggests the latter.
They have mentor Gary Barlow working hard for them as a de facto fourth member. Their VT will most likely involve their performance together for Children In Need, some of which can be seen here. That may be enough to keep them clear of the bottom two this week.
According to the market, Sam Callahan and Luke Friend are the other prime candidates for a place in the bottom two, after their maulings at the hands of judges last week. However, their song choices of ‘Faith’ and ‘Your Song’ are iconic and could play to their strengths.
Given this, and the fact that neither have been in the bottom two yet, I won’t be backing them to fall into the bottom two before the show. Meanwhile, I can’t envisage Sam Bailey and Nicholas McDonald in the singoff, especially with reasonable song choices, ‘Something’ and ‘Someone Like You’ respectively.
So this week’s suggestions are Hannah to be eliminated at 11/8, and a Hannah Barrett / Tamera Foster bottom two combination at 6/1.
Do keep the conversation going below – in the build up and during the show itself.