X Factor 2013 Week 4 Post Mortem: Exit Road

Was it colour vomit that did for them again? Or just the cheesy dance moves and slightly dodgy vocals? Either way, the “acid trip hipster quintet of doom” – otherwise known as Kingsland Road – came to the end of their X Factor journey.

They were in the bottom two with Tamera, a not-so-shocking shock singoff appearance after her underwhelming performance last night and the widespread doubts about how well she was connecting with the voting public.

I’d got a few hundred on Kingsland Road going home at odds of around 3/1 after yesterday’s show, so I wasn’t in the mood to be greedy by going in again on them at the forbiddingly short odds of 1.03 during the singoff.

For the first time this year, the act due to depart was given blue lighting during the singoff. But this was the exception that proved the rule that lighting does appear to be given some thought during singoffs, as Tamera’s initial red-and-black ended up a glorious uplifting golden.

Tamera’s bottom two throws the win market even more wide open than her poor performance, and Sam Bailey’s good one, had already done. It’s the return of the Big Band theme next week, and we’ve been promised an orchestra on stage. Clearly producers are looking around for ways to halt sliding ratings.

We’ll aim to be back during the week with our regular staging review and some thoughts on the state of the win market. In the meantime, what are your thoughts on tonight’s result, and what the coming weeks hold in this open race? As ever, do keep the conversation going below.

100 comments to X Factor 2013 Week 4 Post Mortem: Exit Road

  • Ben Cook

    I wouldn’t be surprised if they now threw all their weight behind Sam Bailey if they still want a female winner. She’s the only one who can stop Nicholas now.

  • Kevin

    I hope many made a profit this week, good one for Sofabet. Two good weeks in a row now for my bets thankfully.

  • eurovicious

    Felt confident enough to put my first bets on since May tonight, and won – on KR going and Tamera being B2. Small amounts, deliberately, but I’m happy. I’m strictly keeping my gambling at hobby-level.

    More than anything I’m happy that even though Sam C was favourite to go and Tamera’s B2 odds remained pretty long (longer than Abi’s), the community called it correctly. There was a pretty broad consensus on here and entertainmentodds that Sam C would be safe, KR would go and Tamera was at risk of B2, plus a lot of people also saying Abi would be safe. I like that – with the new commenters of the past couple of weeks, I like the fact that more people can correctly read the show. Because I haven’t always found it easy, I certainly didn’t last year. Not many people called it when Ella went B2 last year, but a lot of people did this week when Tamera went B2 in very similar circumstances, which shows as a community we’re finetuning our sensors. Plus I like it when the show’s plans go wrong. I’m happy that I correct read between the lines regarding the hyperpimping of Hannah in week 2-3 and the successive late slots for Tamera combined with the aggressive deramping of Abi – who is now the only girl not to have been in the B2.

    I hope some of you got the 9/1 available for Abi to be top girl earlier, even just so you can lay/trade it before they ditch her at the next opportunity…

  • eurovicious

    Gary’s “the public is wrong”, reminiscent of Tulisa’s mini-freakout in week 7 last year, is exemplary of the show’s bad attitude these days. “If you, the paying public, don’t vote for the acts we favour, you’re wrong” – that’s what they’re saying.

    • EM

      I took that as more of a set up line to a Gary vs The Public storyline around Sam C

      • Kevin

        Yes that open mouthed gaze all part of the fascinating sub plot (sarcasm alert)

        • Kevin

          I guess if Sam is part of a sub plot perhaps they will want him around for a bit yet, even if B2. In fact saving him would push the theme hugely.

          • Jessica Hamby

            I don’t think he’ll be saved if he goes b2, except maybe against Abi. None of them like his voice and it’s not going to get significantly better in a few weeks.

            Gary only has himself to blame though, for going so hard on him yesterday. If he’d been a little more moderate the vote Sam Callahan thing possibly wouldn’t have happened.

          • eurovicious

            Gary going hard on Sam Callahan? There’s a Gentlemen’s Recreational Film in that.

    • Dan

      Gary’s “the public is wrong”, reminiscent of Tulisa’s mini-freakout in week 7 last year, is exemplary of the show’s bad attitude these days.

      Yep, and it will go against him and the show. Nothing like telling a paying voter that they’re too stupid to pick the “right” act.

      • Kevin

        Perhaps they view it as anything beats dis-interest. Make Barlow the anti-public bad guy, it at least generates some reaction. It is clearly pre-planned given the way they panned to Barlows face when Sam C came on stage. It is a pre-conceived idea to generate public feeling – anything beats apathy. Sam C has a new role.

        • eurovicious

          Yeah, it was like gape-porn. When Gary was open-mouthed at Kitty’s stellar boot-camp performance in 2011 it was hilarious because it looked totally genuine, but on Saturday the camera just stayed on it for too long, making it look contrived.

  • Jessica Hamby

    I wonder what this means for next week’s elimination. Is Sam C’s support going to hold up? Announcing him safe first abd Abi last makes it sound like he’s easily safe and she’s close to b2 but who knows if that’s accurate or what effect, if any, those impressions will have.

    Most of all, what effect will yesterday’s nuking of Sam C have on his vote next week? Will he be damned with faint praise? Will his vote rally as they clearly did this week?

    And Abi… Is this a sign of solid support or wavering loyalty. Will people get behind her or desert what could easily be perceived as a sinking ship?

    My pretend pounds are staying in my purse until the show next week.

  • lolhart

    After tonight’s result I don’t think it’s beyond the realms of possibility that we could see a Hannah v Tamera bottom 2 in the next few weeks. I also wouldn’t be surprised (as would most commentators) if Tamera has been drifting near the bottom since the live shows started. Another reason for them to get rid of the flash vote.

    • Dan

      After tonight’s result I don’t think it’s beyond the realms of possibility that we could see a Hannah v Tamera bottom 2 in the next few weeks.

      I bet that nearly happened last week and was one of the drivers behind dropping the flash vote. I reckon that the number of votes between acts was minuscule given the limited voting time.

  • Where do you start with all this…!

    I’m working on a quarter baked theory that the Hannah thing last week might have been a sort of sacrificial, flame grilled lamb to try and get the phone vote up for people like Tamera. A sort of remember Ella/James – “if you don’t vote, look what happens”, warning.

    Second, quarter baked theory. Obviously I don’t think they wanted Tamera in the bottom two, hence the Star Crazy treatment, (maybe my mind is playing tricks but is that the first time I’ve seen yellow for a sing off Daniel…?!!) but I do think Cowell will be pleased. I’m wondering if “make it more interesting – make it less predictable.” was the pre October message.

    • Ben Cook

      Still doesn’t add up that they would give Hannah a great song and great VT last week but deliberately sabotage her with flames. Perhaps they don’t use fire as a deliberate “dampener”, even if it does have that effect.

      BTW is there any reason why you call Tamera Tamara on your (fabulous) podcast? 🙂

  • Chris Bellis

    Tamera is the one with most commercial potential. Expect the full pimp next week.

    • Mech

      Is there anything else they could do?

      • eurovicious

        She’ll be crying out of every orifice if they have any sense. And feeding beggars on the streets of Gravesend – Mother Tamera.

        Actually, given the Tamera-Hannah friendship we saw at bootcamp, what might not be a bad idea if spun correctly is to show them bonding/commiserating over being in the B2. It’d be an authentic way to show warmth and further humanise Tamera in viewers’ eyes. (From my perspective she doesn’t need it, I like how she is, but from a narrative perspective she does need it.)

  • Kevin

    Does Hannah lack a little humility the way she celebrates? It might be slightly unfair as it of course means a lot to her but with other people around her enduring the same torment she has been released from she might tone it down a little. I cant see it helping her in the popularity stakes. I might be over analyzing this.

    • eurovicious

      Bearing this in mind, how’s she gonna react when she inevitably does go – possibly sooner rather than later? It’s gonna be Giles Potter all over again, isn’t it? Rubber rings on standby…

    • Kevin, I have been thinking of the exact same thing. She is Misha-ing it up and that’s no good.

    • eurovicious

      I say this, but I have a lot of sympathy for contestants like Hannah and Giles who’ve really emotionally staked their all on the programme. It worries me. With these kids, they really do think it’s their one shot at the big time – the media world is so glamorous and a show like this is such a big operation that it’s a world unto itself, and when you’re in that world, it can be hard to realise how ephemeral it all is, and that your role in it as an ordinary person cast in a reality show like X Factor is as the product, as content, not as a permanent part.

      When I got my volunteer job at ESC 2011, several friends (non-fans, just regular friends) suggested to me I could turn it into a permanent thing by impressing sufficiently and making the right contacts, and while I didn’t go into it with that intention, it was in the back of my mind the whole time. And yeah, once I was backstage joking with Graham Norton, handing out scripts and chatting over wine with Jon Ola Sand, I did fall into the pattern of thinking “this is my new life now and I’m not going back” – just like Hannah – because it all felt so right. It felt like where I was supposed to be, and I’m sure that’s how Hannah and many of the others feel. When it finished and I left Düsseldorf and returned to my regular job, I was fine for 2-3 months before it unexpectedly crept up on me and sunk in that I was permanently out of the media world and not going back. And despite me having a mature approach, a forward-looking attitude, and being pretty critical of a lot of what I’d experienced there, it did hit me quite hard, even though I had no intention of letting it do so. If I, as a 20-something with a degree, a job and a supportive family, reacted like that, imagine how a 16-year-old kid with no qualifications from a difficult background feels. And it’s a mindset the show actively encourages with its “singing for your life” narrative.

  • Lia

    This is the second time the act the judges all say was the worst goes through. They did it to Abi too. Could that be part of tension build up plan? Very likely…
    Are the girls damaged goods now? It feels very much like 2 years ago and unless they do an Amelia Lily with Melanie McCabe they run the risk of not having a single girl in the final. That seemed unthinkable a couple of weeks ago.

  • Dean

    Don’t think TPTB will be too bothered with Tamera in the B2 this week. She will obviously get an initial bounce this coming week, but think it will actually last. She is good and it will maybe even help fans try to connect with her and vice versa for future shows.

    What to say for next week though? Early markets suggest Abi and Sam for B2. I think this week they let Abi have a real go and prove something. I am glad they done that. Abi is clearly a nice girl who means no harm for anyone, and she had a tough time for a couple weeks. They have already done the damage with Abi IMO in that she is already called boring on most forums. However, I think to middle England voters or the older generation who do not go on social networking sites she may actually still pick up votes. I also think she has a good regional fanbase and a loyal niche fanbase. However that will only get her so far. This week she did everything her way and it paid off, the arrangement was brilliant. On the back of really tough weeks it still meant she was going to pick up many votes from those loyal to her. However, to me it also suggests that TPTB now know they can kill her off at any moment. There was a hint of feint praise this week from Mrs O (but also some really good comments too from Gary/Nicole), so if that happens again next week with more feintness I believe Abi’s time could be close. Her narrative may have ended.

    Sam C is an interesting case. He will not be kept over any major hitters for sure, but best way to create controversy and Gary B storming off is if next week he hits B2 but stays over someone, even if it is 1 of the girls or another boy?

    On first evidence with a week down the line I see next week 4 contestants with a chance of B2.

    Sam Callahan
    Abi Alton
    Rough Copy
    Hannah Barrett

    unless things change through out the week.

    • Jessica Hamby

      Depending on song chpice next week could suit Sam very well. He’ll look good in a tux and if he can find something that isn’t too demanding (more Sammy Davis than Frank Sinatra) he may well make a good job of it.

      Abi might struggle. I’m not sure how her style will transfer. Will she take a classic and Abify it? That’s probably her best hope. If she tries to be authentic big band against Hannah, Sam C and even Tamera she’ll take a beating.

      Again depending on song choice the theme should play to Hannah’s strengths but the question for her is if she can generate enough interest or core support. If she carries on sounding like she’s shouting she will sttuggle although I have to say I find Hannah very lileable as a person. I’d lile to have her as a friend.

      • eurovicious

        If Jobbie Williams is on next week, that might be a positive for Sam too. He’s exactly the type to champion Sam a) because of the similarities, as he did with Olly and b) to create comic conflict with stony-faced Gary. At least that’s the sort of thing I’d encourage if I were in charge.

        • Daniel

          Funny you should say that EV – Sam Callahan was one of the acts hanging out with Robbie Williams and Olly Murs in a VT on Xtra Factor tonight. He was briefly shown bonding with them and saying afterwards that the pair of them were his biggest heroes in music.

  • Jessica Hamby

    I think Rough Copy have a bit more mileage in them. They need to sort out the guy who sings flat as a matter of urgency but they have strong commercial potential if they can do that. I would be tempted to put a little something on them depending on odds to reach the top 3 or even win. They’re likeable and current and there’s one very good voice in there. They have a clear identity and as long as Gary stops his efforts to make them the backstreet boys they are “credible” or at least not cheesy.

  • Jessica Hamby

    Luke may struggle to delight the demo in big band week. I wonder what the odds are for him doing a Sid Vicious style My Way.

  • Donald

    Good call Daniel, thanks! didn’t go mad either but had a nice bet at 11/4 so good result.

    Been too busy to really concentrate but Sofabet is the place to heed week to week.

    Still fancying Rough Copy, nothing putting me off yet. Going to start hedging a bit though as they my only win bet just yet. Hedge with who is the question though?

    Hope all had good night..

  • Roxie

    The thing is with all the stuff in the press, regardless of my opinion of it (I love Tamera), but did they honestly think Tamera would win with those stories? Press can be a powerful influence as we learned with Danyl, Maloney and Katie W. Tamera is not explicitly being sabotaged but I do think she is a ‘disguise’ to prevent the back-burn of the overpraise for the real Plan A.

    The fact that she was called a Beyonce impersonator during her pimp slot just reinforces that for me. Almost seems like Gary (ie the producers?) wanted people to think in a certain way about her? It’s like Misha B who was called a bully during the pimp slot – it’s something that people will remember. Why would the producers do that to their golden girl?

    Oh btw I’m new here – always find this site so fascinating.

  • Lina Tartana

    Betsfactor said something about Tamera’s star crazy staging doing her in. I noticed that it looked like she was in a cage. I wonder if that disconnect did her in, too.

  • Lolalola

    It was interesting on Saturday night how Dermot oh-so-casually announced the end of the flash vote. I remember the analysis of the early voting that was done on last year’s show & the conclusion was that it is not a big money spinner & how close many of the contestants are to the bottom. So the flash vote was abandoned to suit TPTB. Why? Well most likely because it put favoured acts at risk. Hannah in B2 last week & Tamera in the B2 show that pretty clearly.

    Other thoughts from this weekend…

    Tamera’s golden glow & lighting in the sing-off spoke volumes.

    For me Hannah is losing her likeability factor. The early weeks of auditions showed her emotions, but also a fun side. Great big laughs & positivity. Now she is coming across as a bit surly & the celebration at being through last night didn’t look great. Plus she is roaring her songs – too much shouting & not enough nuance.

    Abi – much improved & I actually like her more now than I did at the beginning. I think her narrative has been too negative for her to be the winner though. Even though James Arthur hit B2 – no previous winner has had such negative comments.

    Rough Copy have definite potential, especially with the demise of JLS. I prefer them when they are less Westlife & more themselves.

    Sam C – definitely out of his league. His Dad argues that x-factor is not The Voice. Gary Barlow says its a singing competition. Praising Sam next week could see him B2 – criticism will probably keep him safe.

    Wee Nic looked & sounded uncomfortable on Sat night.

    Sam B – yes, great voice, but YAWN. Just can’t see the producers wanting her as the overall winner.

  • EM

    If I were running the show I’d be considering the following right now:

    Who has commercial potential beyond the show: that’s Rough Copy, Tamera and Luke for me (without knowing voting or download figures). It may be they see an Ellie Goulding type future for Abi but I doubt it.

    Who’s going to bring ratings: that is the two Sams

    They’ve finally manufactured the storyline Barlow v Callaghan – I’m sure next week, with the help of Robbie, they’ll stoke up the feeling of a vote for Sam C is a vote against Barlow and the show.

    Sam B is a great feel good story, something the show needs while being hammered by the ultimately feel good Strictly.

    That leaves Abi and Hannah in danger, although I haven’t marked up Hannah as having commercial appeal the X Factor has a track record of trying to make a Hannah type work and getting them over the line despite the little audience traction they have.

    Summing it up – who is most expendable this week? Abi.

  • EM

    Also love all the theories about the flash vote ending. Truth is however that the bottom two was viewer voted flash vote or not.

    Much more likely it was removed to make Sundays show more exciting again. The betting market didn’t call the elimination right this week so you can imagine the heightened suspense in the viewing public

  • Jessica Hamby

    Press stories have affected Tamera, no doubt, and leaving it a couple of years would have helped her for a lot of reasons.

    Giving her a similar style to Sam Bailey and changing her from the streety kid in the beany hat who came to first auditions is a bigger mistake in my view. The problem is she’s being given dated songs and power ballads. Giving her something current and dressing her like a 16 year old will play to her strengths. Give her power ballads and dress her like a frump on the same bill as Sam B and she will always come off second best.

    • Jessica Hamby

      And unless the make a contemporary arrangement for the coming week, Sam B is going to school her again and reinforce theimpression that she’s not quite up to it. They need to think r&b, Rira Ora, have her rap a few lines if she can. She needs to do something the others can’t do and definitely something contemporary, something Nicholas and Sam B would look wrong doing.

    • eurovicious

      This is a really interesting point. I reckon they’ve been playing it so safe with Tamera because she didn’t do so well in week 1 when they gave her an upbeat song. We know viewers generally respond better to ballads than upbeat numbers, and looking at Misha B (peace be upon her) in 2011, we can see that her best results came when she straightforwardly sung a standard (I Have Nothing, Proud Mary, Purple Rain) and her worst results when she went “urban” or added a rap to a song (the amazing Halloween performance and week 6 & 8). Probably with this and the bad press in mind, they’ve chucked Tamera a ballad every week after week 1, including giving her Listen in the pimp slot, the type of song you’d expect them to give her much later in the competition. By attempting to prevent Tamera from succumbing to the Misha effect, they neglected to consider the Ella effect or the fact that making her into a balladeer means she’s occupying the same territory as Sam B, who she can’t hope to outpoll at this stage of the competition, as well as Hannah and arguably Nick. Tamera has no USP. Luke has a USP, Abi has a USP, Sam B and Nick are the archetypal people’s champions and both absolutely excel in their respective roles, and arguably Sam C now also has a USP. What’s Tamera’s USP? She sings nice, looks hot and shoplifts? Her personality simply isn’t coming over on-screen, either positively or negatively.

      Hannah’s USP is the sob-story and shouty voice but it’s not one that viewers go for. Lastly Rough Copy: there are strong parallels between their treatment and Tamera’s treatment. Rough Copy had a USP and a story all the way up to judges’ houses. But in the live shows, they’ve totally lost identity after having been given one dated, safe, bland number after another, presumably also so as not to risk a Misha effect. And it’s kept them out of the B2 so far, partly because unlike Tamera they’re not sharing a niche with anyone else. But how long can it last when they offer nothing new each week and continually fail to delight the demo? Give them something like Earthquake, let them go postal on it and to hell with the consequences, that’s what I say. But of course they can’t do that next week because it’s “big band week”, which I think puts them in more danger than many others.

      • Jessica Hamby

        The themes seem to be playing against the producers intentions and forcing their hands.

        If Abi’s support holds up, and I think the late announcement of her survival was a red herring, then Luke a d Rough copy may be worth a punt. Rough Copy have already said they’re going to break the rules and so try to satisfy their niche that way. I’ll be looking to see how Luke does and whether or not he’s playing to his crowd, especially if Abi successfully Abifies a big band standard.

    • Lia

      Jessica, you totally read my mind!!! I don’t like Tamera’s second makeover which brought back the blond we thought had been left behind to move her away from the time/person in the tabloid stories. She looks absolutely gorgeous in her introduction shot as a brunette. And my husband commented she’s looking much older now. He said she looks 26, not 16, which would put her in the overs with Sam Bailey.
      She looked very young and fresh on the first live show. Now she’s just another diva baladeer. Even Sam B and Nick went uptempo for disco (Abi doesn’t count as her THING is slowed down versions of songs a la Ella Henderson). What the hell are they thinking?

      • Jessica Hamby

        She does look mid twenties. Your right. And it doesn’t suit her. Stick her in a mini skirt and a crop top fer goodness sake. She’s 16, not 6. Those trousers she had on on Sunday were hideous and made her hips and bum look weirdly wide. In trying to avoid sexialising her they’re making her into a frump.

  • Great comments on here all weekend, with all sorts of views and debate and it seems the everybody made a profit.

    Was happy to make some good profits this weekend, after Miss Dynamix cost me in the 1st two weeks. Looking ahead has Sam now got the Rylan role? and if he has will he be willing to play it?

    McNic must be in the pimp slot for big ban week

    and if Hannah and Abi bottm two combo, surely they send Hannah home if they still want Tamera around. They look to be sharing a vote


    • well the 11/4 I took on McNic getting the pimp slot didn’t last long – now 2/1

      • Natasha

        Never even realised there was a market for that!

      • Kevin

        One possible negative is do they want to boost his votes at this stage? I do not think they want him to win in a million years as his commercial appeal may be very limited. It makes sense every other way but this is something that is within TPTB’s control. The running will be driven by their overall motives, I suspect more-so at we come toward the business end.

        • Dean

          Do they have to equally share pimp responsibility? After just being in B2 think it would be a good chance to give Tamera the pimp for the 2nd time.

          Actually think Luke could get it.

          • Kevin

            My feeling is Rough Copy but I wonder can anyone clarify if pimp slot is spread fairly.

          • Distribution of pimp slots over the last six years –

            2012: Jahmene, Melanie, Ella, Lucy, Christopher, James, Jahmene, Christopher, James, James, James

            2011: Janet, Kitty, Misha, Craig, Little Mix, Amelia, Marcus, Amelia, Little Mix, Amelia, Little Mix

            2010: Treyc, Katie, Matt, Cher, One Direction, Rebecca, Katie, Cher, One Direction, Cher, Rebecca

            2009: Danyl, Stacey, Jedward, Olly, Joe, Danyl, Joe, Stacey, Danyl, Joe, Joe

            2008: Laura, Eoghan, Rachel, JLS, Alexandra, Ruth, Eoghan, Diana, JLS, Alexandra

            2007: Hope, Niki, Beverly, Rhydian, Same Difference, Leon, Same Difference, Same Difference, Rhydian

            Observations –

            – The earliest they’ve put someone in the pimp slot who’s been there already is week 6, and that happened only with Danyl – four times they’ve waited till week 7, once till week 8. So if they keep to this pattern (always a big if), you would expect it to go to someone who hasn’t had it yet;

            – Eventual winners had their first pimp slots in weeks 6, 5, 3, 5, 5 and 6 respectively. So it may be significant who gets it this week or next. (Or it may not – this time last year, they gave it to Maloney).

          • Would say that they can do what they want, however I can’t see Nick going through a whole series without getting the slot.

            If they give it to him this week and peak his vote numbers they’ll still have a good number of weeks to de-ramp him.

            I’m on Luke Top Boy so would rather they kept his pimp slot until week 7 or 8.

          • eurovicious

            Nick is due it. They’ve given RC and Luke a lorra lorra late slots already and they’d be shameless to give it Tamera to after she had it two weeks ago. They could give Tamera the penultimate position like they did Hannah this week, before ending with a crowd-pleaser like Nick. If you have Sam B or Nick on at the end, it ensures your broader viewership stays watching until the end of the show.

  • AlisonR

    Been looking through song choices for past Big band years, especially those used more than once, and who they were used for and where those people ultimately finished, to see if that might give us any clues this coming week:

    Summertime (Leona – 1st & Ruth Lorenzo – 5th)
    Ain’t that a kick in the head (JLS and Ray Quinn – both 2nd)
    Smile (Ben Mills – 3rd, Diana Vickers – 4th)
    Feelin Good (Danyl Johnson 4th but made bottom 2 that week, Beverly Trotman 5th and Rachel Hylton 6th)
    Fly me to the Moon (Leon 1st but did they expect it at that stage, Lloyd Daniels 6th)
    Sway (Nikitta Angus 7th, Joe McElderry 1st, again did they expect that ultimately)
    Can’t take my eyes off you (1 elimination Futureproof & 1 safe but poor act Macdonald Brothers 4th)
    Mack the Knife (Austin Drage 9th, Eton Road 5th)
    That’s life (Scott Bruton & Miss Frank, both eliminations that week)

    So, will the target this week get “That’s life” I wonder? Be interesting to see if any of the other contenders get any of these.

  • Natasha

    Definatly think the pimp slot should go to Mc Nick next week. Luke may surprise us again like he did this week (Im hoping not as want to keep believing Mc Nick is the Alpha) Does anyone know what themes are coming after big band week?

  • Jessica Hamby

    I’ve been wondering if Sam C was top boy on Sunday. His followers on Twitter started a campaign for him and he is the most followed comtestant. If he and / or Abi have real, loyal support then it could get very interesting.

    • Twitter v Scottish vote… at this stage Scottish Vote will be winning

      • Jessica Hamby

        Unless you can show your workings for that I’m going to keep an open mind. Sam is aligning himself with Ollie and Rylan. A thread on DS says he’s saying Gary’s treating him like a punchbag and he’s the new Rylan. If he does well this week he could get some real traction and longterm support.

        • Jessica Hamby

          Gary’s punchbag……

          Remember Sam’s staging on Saturday. There were moments when the huge animated boxers on the screen seemed to be punching him and also the dancers.

          Either Sam is being very smart or someone in production has set this up. Add Abi’s late announcement of being saved and it really does look lile she’ll be the target in what shiuld be a difficult theme for her. Saturday’s going to be interesting….

  • Lolalola

    A Scottish friend of mine said to me over the weekend that Louis Walsh likes to give the impression that Irish people vote for Irish acts regardless, and that the Scots do the same. She said that if the act is crap then no way do Scots vote for then regardless – they are mortified & want them out. Her opinion is that Nic is good but in danger of going down the Leon route unless they do something different – more contemporary & interesting with him. She doesn’t think there are enough Scots voting to really make a big difference. Obviously the caveat is that it is only one person’s opinion.

    I agree with EM’s opinion that the bottom 2 is the bottom 2. But I can’t help but wonder if a ten minute flash vote could skew results compared to voting over a 24 hour period. The bottom 2 after ten minutes may not be the same as the bottom 2 a day later.

  • kinski

    After loosing small amounts the last two weeks glad my smallish wager on Tamera b2 at 16/1 paid off.

    I think there might be good money on a Hannah b2 this week and possibly elimination.

    I think Sam will probably be safe for the time being given what we saw with Rylan last year, and I get the feeling Abi might have more support than it seems.

    As for who else is in that bottom two I don’t have any clue. I keep going for Rough Copy, but that doesn’t seem to be happening!

    • Jessica Hamby

      Song choices and running order will shed more light. If you see someone singing That’s Life in second or third spot there’s a grand chance s/he’ll be b2 or even eliminated.

    • eurovicious

      With Tamera bouncing and Hannah coming down off a bounce, I think she has to be in the most danger. They can hardly pull out all the stops to keep her safe when that’s exactly what they did in weeks 2, 3 and 4 to minimal avail – what’s left up their sleeve (and is it worth it)?

      In a Hannah/Luke B2, I reckon they save Luke.
      In a Hannah/Abi B2, I reckon they save Hannah (sadly).
      In a Hannah/RC B2, they save RC.
      In a Hannah/Sam C B2… do they save Sam C for controversy? Or Hannah for the voice and story? Do they take it to deadlock and let Hannah go to create a mid-series shocker a la Jedward/Lucie?

      • Kevin

        I am leaning toward Hannah elimination also and 9/2 is not a bad price. I think Abi may have enough support to avoid B2 at this stage. Hannah/ Sam C they cant save Hannah as such as Barlow would surely have to send Sam home (although is anything possible). It would be down to votes but again I think Sam C may be polling better than Hannah.

        And would Hannah being gone also boost Tamera? Theoretically yes, so would also appeal to TPTB possibly. Big band does not suit shouting either does it?

        It will be most interesting to see if a consensus starts forming this week among the “community” (as EV so eloquently puts it). Down off a bounce 9/2 is a good bet in my opinion anyway.

        As mentioned previously her raucous celebrations wont have endeared her to anyone either.

        • Jessica Hamby

          It’s a good shout and seems in the interests of TPTB. I definitely agree for b2. I think the real value might be picking who’s down there with her, nut if it’s not Abi (or possibly Sam C) then I think she’ll go.

      • Lia

        Hannah and Sam C, they take it to deadlock and Hannah goes home to the annoyance of Borelow. Classic XF!

  • Dean

    Yep it hards to predict for now. I think the target will be a girl obviously mainly Abi, but perhaps Hannah given she is blocking Tamera to an extent. I think there is a story for Sam C

  • Right guys, had a think and convinced Sam Bailey wins it from here.

    Tamera must of polled what? less than 4-6% of the votes this week? Regardless if she was bottom or 2nd from bottom! How can she turn that around, she will most likely bounce easily, but it only takes taking that figure up to 10% to bounce. Turning 4% into a majority winner in the final, is just too difficult? She just isn’t liked by the public.

    Nicholas may have the Scottish vote and its one everyone would be worried about, but the producers have been pushing Luke, surely any extra votes each week are going to Luke and Nicholas isn’t gaining any extra? Like Chris last year he can top the vote with 20% easily enough with the Scottish vote, but in the final, I would be confident enough a this stage he would be beaten. Unless you think the producers would actually want him to win? I don’t personally.

    Luke Friend I like and there is a chance for him for Top Male, but I’m not sure he will have enough to win.

    I have had my doubts the past few weeks over Rough Copy, being on last then second last brings alarm bells for me, tells me despite pimping in week one, they were not as high enough in the vote so decided to deliberately give them a good slot again. Their VT this week focused on their audition it was a bit like “Remember you like Rough Copy in their audition” which makes me think the songs they have been given hadn’t delighted there demographic this was a bit of a calling for Rough Copy fans to remember why you like them? As it stands Rough Copy are my only large red and with them being Garys last act they will be here a while, but the low votes in the first few weeks makes me think they wont have enough to win.

    Hannah Barrett for the same reasons as Tamera I cant have her as a winner, bottom 2 already, can appear miserable sometimes, isn’t liked.

    Sam Callahan this years novelty act for me.

    This leaves Abi and Sam. I am one of those who unfortunately backed Abi at single figures during the audition stage after finding some of her stuff on youtube I thought she had the most potentiality as a unique artist, unfortunately her nerves have got the better of her in week 2 and week 3. But for me the producers have still favored her at 50.0 on Betfair I wouldn’t put anyone of backing in outright. She is unique and I think has had favored treatment if this continues she may have a decent run. But probably not a winner.

    Now Sam Bailey? best singer in the competition? Audition was in week 1 a positive. She has had good treatment so far, probably topped the vote twice. She can perform and can sing, she also has Sharon (everyones favourite Over?) supporting her as an Over. She just had a pimp slot and will probably be due another around week 7/8, that will carry her to the final easily and I think if she continues to sing and perform like she has so far, she can win…

    Few things I want to remind that others noticed and have informed me, Sam Bailey was the first act that Producers followed on Twitter long before show started. One more which i really like Sam Bailey is the only act consistently being featured in other acts VT’s and its in a favourable way. If you like Luke and Luke is having a joke etc etc with Sam Bailey then you will naturally like Sam Bailey too, its those extra votes that make a difference as it comes closer to the final when these acts leave.

    Sam Bailey has won for me. But can anyone else make a stronger case for anyone else?

    • Kevin

      I just wonder if she is who the majority of voters will vote for when down to 2 or 3? That might sound simplistic but will a younger voting demographic (assuming they are in the majority) allow her to win? Top 3 & Winner are different animals.

      Using Chris Maloney as an example I think the TPTB always knew his vote was not enough to win as the other choices become more limited. I think Sam’s vote may be similar, more might people rally behind a “cooler” act. e.g. the people who vote for candidates who have been eliminated.

      I am playing devil’s advocate to a degree & am not making a stronger case necessarily for anyone else but the person(s) left standing up against Sam by the final will pick up a lot of floating votes.

      • Its a good point, but this is why I highlight Sam B’s appearance in other contestants VT’s the main two I think I have noticed her in are Nicholas’ and Luke’s. If this continues then she will be picking up extra votes as the contestants leave.

        Its the reason why I actually think Sam B will pick up the floating votes and not the act next to her in the final.

    • eurovicious

      Great analysis. I would love Abi to go far, but young people (the cool kids) will never get on board, so I doubt she can go further than about 5th at the very most. Middle-class adults love the whole John Lewis ad thing (as evidenced again recently by the fact the fragile, slowed-down version of Ain’t Nobody from the Sainsbury’s ad charted), but Twitter chatter about Abi is voluminous and 90% negative – all coming from low-intellect teens with slutty pictures and a shaky grasp of English who think she’s “boring” etc. It’s basically the supposedly “popular” kids picking on the smart sensitive kid, transferred to the public sphere. People with actual ears and actual hearts will vote for Abi but she’ll never be cool to like. As Tim tweeted, “Abi gets hate cos she’s the antithesis of what most people want to see – a real artist who doesn’t do karaoke like the rest of em.”

      Although, while looking at Twitter, I just noticed something. Olly Murs (Syco act, 5 million followers) tweeted:

      “Miss @abialton was my fav performance of the night!! Really cool her version of ‘I will survive’ proper cool!! Have even downloaded it…”

      James Arthur (Syco act, 2 million followers) tweeted:

      “Your back @abialton stay there!! Don’t let anyone change you #love” (sic)

      Last week I wrote “If I were the show now, I’d switch positions and run with Abi […] letting her do her thing” Could this be interpreted as evidence that they’re doing a switcheroo and taking this approach? All 3 girls are damaged goods now, Hannah and Tamera from their B2 appearances and Abi from her treatment, but in terms of popularity with viewers, Abi is the least damaged. I should add a lot of the Twitter chatter about Tamera is also negative, referencing the press stories and her perceived lack of humility.

      • Interesting points about the twitter comments I hope it continues. It does raise an interesting question.. have they switched? If they havent already will they now?

        • Kevin

          I think they would take Abi, Hannah or Tamera as winner ahead of Nick or Sam so perhaps they have re-positioned and are set to back the last girl standing and are open to following the votes. Abi is the only girl that has not been B2. This we know. Cowell may have requested a single female on a platter so maybe this is now Plan A as opposed to any particular one of them. It would seem sensible to allow the voting public steer them to a degree as opposed to going completely against the flow. The next two weeks will be huge as regards Abi, but like a phoenix from the flame she is suddenly not without hope.

      • Lia

        Hi Eurovicious, I am definitely not a teenager and I don’t think I have a low intellect and, just to confirm, I don’t even tweet. I have a problem with Abi and I’ll try to explain it more than just saying she’s boring.
        I did like her first audition, the jigsaw piece song not so much but I did like the second arena song that was only shown on XTra Factor. She went on and all the performances are very similar. Sometimes they sound like the same song with different lyrics.
        The only time she tried something a little (really very little) different, it felt contrived and uncomfortable. I don’t appreciate one dimensional performers, especially on XF context, where I tune in to be entertained and part of that is being surprised by an unexpected good performance. That will also include Ella Henderson always doing slowed down versions of songs, or the numerous “divas” screaming ballads at my face every week.
        I could listen to an Abi song on the radio or indeed the John Lewis ad and like it, like I’ve done before to Ellie Goulding and Gabrielle Aplin, but I expect variation. Ellie Goulding has shown that and she’s doing well and I’m a fan. Gabrielle Aplin is still to show.
        Hope this gives you a new perspective on the issue as I’m not alone in thinking this.

    • Caro

      I agree JScouser2002. I think Sam B has a good chance.
      I take Kevin’s point, but I think she has wider ‘overs’ appeal than Christopher Maloney. She differs from him in the way that she connects with people: she is more likable, doesn’t seem fake (and is less orange). It certainly doesn’t feel like she is voting for herself multiple times.
      She’s also undergoing a physical journey that is appealing – a bit like one of those makeover programmes that are always on TV (and we even had her in a spa this week).
      Other commentators have picked up how the youth of some of the contestants is making certain song choices seem inappropriate and that really hammered home this week (with Nicholas’ ‘r*ck with you’ being a case in point). This is something else that is helping Sam B. For example, take Hannah’s awful version of ‘ Somebody Else’s Guy’ – she just seems to think that if she bellows out the song it will be okay. But we want nuance and connection with the song – and Sam B can give you that in spades. You feel like she has been through enough to connect with songs like ‘Enough is Enough’. Whether that will translate into votes is another thing, but it is certainly more satisfying viewing.

      • Kevin

        All great points, again I can see a strong argument as to why she might win so was adding to the debate really. She looks more likely to win now than at any time previously. If I had her backed at a decent price I would be very hopeful.

        At 9/4 best I don’t think she is value right now. Becoming favourite too soon could backfire somewhat. It’s all about timing of course.

      • Boki

        Crucial thing about SamB winning is producer’s support or to be more precise the amount of deramp. At this point it’s still not clear what are they going to do with her later on.

    • Andy

      In agreement with JScoucer, Sam B wins it from here, TPTB had a opportunity to knock Sam down a notch on Saturday, they could have quite easily called the performance CABARET, yet the judges raved about all aspects of the performance,
      There seems to be a certain respect for Sam that was sadly missing for Christopher last year and I guess she will have polled 40% or more of the votes on Sat/Sun. I said a few weeks ago it was not going to be easy to bring Sam down and it just got a lot more difficult after last weekend.
      I thankfully spent a week or so backing Sam at odds of 13 & 14/1 on betfair when the market opened and am sitting on a very healthy Green.

      • Kevin

        Great position to be in and next weeks theme is perfectly suited to her also. Would you be tempted to lay off at those odds?

        • Andy

          Not yet Kevin, I have young Nick as Green as Sam B and I honestly believe that he is the only genuine threat at the moment, I am keeping a close eye on Luke (he is proving a thorn in my side). In my 1-12 predictions I stated there were huge question marks over Nicole’s girls for one reason or the other and this has proved to be the case.
          I had Nick to win in my 1-12 and Sam B 2nd.
          I am swapping them around.
          Sam looking good ATM.

          • Kevin

            Why i didn’t press bet with 365 on Luke at 40/1 on the Saturday before last I don’t know. This was available after he had performed I am pretty sure. Of course if he loses it would be a 40/1 loser! It looks some price 10 days later though.

            Best of luck with bets, you are in good order for sure.

          • Andy

            Thanks Kevin.
            X factor never seems straight forward does it ?
            The market seems to swing back and forth and one decent performance from any act sends the odds tumbling.
            Sam B and Nicholas seem certs for the final at the moment and I am glad to have them both onside.
            and even though I am in Sam’s corner at the moment I do think Nicholas has a card up his sleeve with A thousand years which he sung at Wembley, it is his best performance to date and IF they can convince Christina Perri to Duet in the final it could send all the Twilight saga teenie voter wild.
            Its a big IF but you never know.

          • Guildo Horn Forever

            Hi Andy, in my 1-12, I also initially had Nick to win with Sam B 2nd, but then edited my post, after reflecting on it, to switch them around. Hope it works out this way.

        • Andy

          Christina perri has performed on Dancing with the Stars USA & Australia, Strictly come dancing, & Dancing on Ice over the last 2 years, So may jump at the opportunity to sing along with Nick.

  • tpfkar

    Only just caught up on the weekend. Didn’t bet at all which is frustrating as I’d happily have taken some KR at 3/1.

    A couple of thoughts:
    1) It’s a classic bonfire of the groups and overs. 2 of each gone. I thought it might be more even this year, but it’s gone down a classic route so far.
    2) Yet again, the girls category is deceptively weak, and it seems some of the views on this forum are that Hannah is a busted flush but that Tamera is salvageable. I’ve had my views on Hannah for a while and only reinforced now, but I can’t help thinking that they will have to lose one of them for the other to survive. Hannah at 9/2 to go looks like cracking value.
    3) i wonder if the flash vote just wasn’t bringing much money in? May be a revenue decision rather than anything about drama or getting favoured acts through. With deadlock and 8 acts left, they’ve now got more chance of getting the ones they want.

  • Carla

    Nothing much to add, apart from the fact that I bet Nicole is gutted that she played the James Arthur card this week instead of waiting to use him for Tamera!

  • Boki

    I have to admit it’s going to be hard to push Tamera to the win now so layed some more, I hope Nic will beat SamB (don’t mind Luke either) but as I said it all depends who is the lesser evil for them.
    Both KR and Tamera landing b2 was nice result yesterday, can’t complain. Next week will be interesting for sure.

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