X Factor 2017 Week 1 Post-Mortem

We’re still getting used to the new rhythm of the show. It has some plus points, but one thing we suspect producers will be rethinking today is the “prize fight” singoff format. Twitter and the Sofabet comments section were united in bafflement at why the show thought viewers would care which of Grace or Rak-Su […]

X Factor 2017: Live Show 2

We’re still adjusting to the changes in format, but it has to be a positive that the franchise felt refreshed from its tired old formula. Our midweek musings will be where we plunge into depth on various treatments. That will include Spencer’s assassination, which saw more than a few foreign references, and a cage of […]

X Factor 2017: Live Show 1

Our commenters have until 8.20pm tonight to enter the traditional prediction competition (in the previous thread for ease of compilation, if you could). That’s when the first live show kicks off. We’ll witness half this year’s acts performing, including two wildcard winners, a guaranteed elimination, and a singoff between the top two for a special […]

X Factor 2017 Pre-Lives 1-16: On The Rak

Grace or a group? A group or Grace? If not Grace, which group? That’s been the question occupying the Sofabet brains trust – although, as usual, we confidently expect that the first week of live shows will turn many assumptions on their heads and leave us with egg on our faces. Please be reminded that […]

X Factor 2017: Market speaks on wildcards

The wildcard vote closed yesterday and the market seems confident that Alisah, Talia, Jack and Joel, and Leon have made it into the final 16. Meanwhile, we’ve had a preview of the makeovers of the 12 we saw going through at the weekend. Props to producers for amusingly making them all sing “They’ll never bring […]

X Factor 2017 6CC: Blanket smothering for Linnen et al?

In last week’s article, we discussed the possibility of producers pursuing a scorched-earth policy to facilitate a Grace victory. The remaining 6CC shows fitted that interpretation: after her rivals in the other three categories had performed, the only act shorter in the Betfair market than they had been before was Sam Black, who didn’t even […]

X Factor 2017 Bootcamp 2: Coup de Grace

In two recent seasons of X Factor (the beneficiaries being Little Mix in 2011 and Louisa Johnson in 2015), producers have adopted “scorched earth” tactics – not only pushing their favoured act, as they always do, but also nuking every single other act from space, just to be sure. They don’t always do this: in […]

X Factor 2017 Bootcamp 1: Betfairs and Graces

In a normal year, we’d be looking forward to the first of the live shows this coming weekend. Instead, the XF’s focus groups apparently told them that what viewers really want is five hours of bootcamp, and the same again of 6CC. Bootcamp is turgid fare from a Sofabet perspective, typically revealing limited new information […]