X Factor Week 2 Post Mortem: Ready Freddy Go

The market called the singoff situation correctly, with the top three in the elimination betting occupying the bottom three positions in the vote – and the longest-odds of those three duly being saved by the lifeline vote (go Coatbridge!).

As we’ve now had two lifeline votes and two cute boys being the beneficiaries, it seemed likely to me that the show would take the opportunity to ditch Freddy while they could. Saara offers more performance-wise and her bounce is likely to be easier to control. Punters agreed, though during the singoff it was still possible to get on Freddy at around 1.6, with Saara trading around 2.7.  I must admit that when Simon took it to deadlock, I was expecting to lose – but I’ve ended the night with a modest profit.

Where now for the Snow Fairy, who is bearing her undignified treatment with commendable good grace? There are precedents for repeated singoff appearances to belatedly engender sympathy, with Rachel Adedeji topping week 3’s vote after saves in the first two weeks, and Katie Waissel almost topping the vote the week after her third save in a row. It will be interesting to see if producers give Saara a break; leaving Relley hanging over the ad break perhaps wasn’t the best of signs for her.

More reflection to come in our midweek post, as always. In the meantime, do keep the conversation going below.

109 comments to X Factor Week 2 Post Mortem: Ready Freddy Go

  • Simon

    Relly C will be next, she’s so forgettable

  • Martin

    Quite an uncomfortable watch this evening, although the results worked like clockwork for the second week in a row. I don’t really anticipate much of a bounce for poor Saara if tonight was anything to go by – there was precisely zero reason for Sharon to forget her name again, voting had finished and the time for influence was over. If that was planned, it was cruel and unnecessary. If not, someone needs to look at Sharon’s medication.

    Interesting things going into next week will be if Ryan and Saara will be the bottom two as happened this week. The show could quite easily work with a bounce for both of them, but at whose expense? As raised in the comments on the last article, Saara is excellent value in the cast as she can be justifiably saved in a sing off against anybody. I wouldn’t discount the show milking that for at least another week or two.
    Relley being made to suffer through the break isn’t a great sign, diva week is the complete opposite of what Ryan (and also Emily) seem capable of and 4OD need to put in more than what we saw Saturday to keep their goodwill going. Honey G may also need to put in a bit more effort to keep momentum up.

  • GsP

    Flash vote of course totally skews the result. I reckon Saara was 3rd bottom this week, and could have been as well in week 1.

    That mitigates the impact of any bounce as very easy to still be sucked into danger zone and flash vote favours certain kinds of acts.

    Would seem fairer if flash votes were added to existing total, rather than being a clean slate.

  • I pretty much dodged the elimination market this week, although I knew it could only be Zara or Freddy. A couple of things surprised me tonight; both Gifty getting through and Zara not being bottom on deadlock after a lifeline vote. Emily must be receiving the bulk of the Scottish vote and this must have transferred to Ryan, who was also probably third from bottom going into the results. I was delighted to come out of a tricky week with a decent enough profit, after mostly focusing on the Bottom Three market.

    Divas next week should be good fun. What are the chances Honey G gets Missy Elliott? 😉

    • 360

      “and this must have transferred to Ryan, who was also probably third from bottom going into the results”

      That raises a really interesting point, Tim. This week’s result makes clear that Saara ultimately polled higher than Freddy in the overall results.

      But there’s nothing to say that Freddy and Saara came bottom and second-bottom. Ryan’s saving vote came from the blue. It could well have been the case that Ryan was dead bottom, Freddy second bottom and Saara third bottom of the overall vote this week.

      Just thought I should post this clarifying as I’ve just realized it myself. Others might have missed it too.

  • Lara T

    Please forgive me for being new but here are a few of my thoughts…

    I feel most disposable at this point are Ryan, relley, Emily and possibly another.

    Emily was a good fave but has faultered. She just doesn’t have the powerhouse vocal to win.

    Sam is a very interesting prospect.. story is there,voice maybe not so much but she has been given classic crowd pleasing songs (for X factor anyway). I also think that vocally she may surprise.

    Gifty for me is good but middle of the pack material. I don’t get Fleur from her… more Misha B.

    Matt, in my opinion, is probably running away with it but could be trumped.. it’s a very open season.

    Here, I get personal…

    I normally choose my winner based on a feeling and have been very successful . This year I think Matt for the win, but have a funny feeling about Sam. Let’s see!!!

  • India Marie

    Freddy had less votes than Saara in which vote: the flash vote or the overnight vote?

  • Dermot made it clear it was the overnight vote.

    A return to profit for me tonight.

    A bit worried I’m getting cofirmation bias, or just emotional bias towards Saara. Even with the abuse she’s getting from producers, I can’t understand why the public are rejecting her. Who is writing Sharon’s lines? Nigel Farage? The thing is I think she comes across as personally likeable. Is Middle England thinking she’s taken the place of a British contestant and needs to piss off back to YLE’s National Final? That said, that other big voiced person from ABROAD, Ruth Lorenzo, also survived a Week 2 singoff with that incredible cover of Purple Rain. I don’t remember her treatment being particularly great either, despite her vocals being massively on point both through the contest and when we last saw her in Copenhagen two years ago. I might hit the Tube and rewatch her performances.

    Divas week should see her in her comfort zone, will producers work with any bounce?

    • Phil

      Be sure to rewatch Ruth singing Love Ain’t Here Anymore. Pure class.

    • Fudd

      Has any act fell in three sing offs in a row from the off? I don’t think so. Katie Waissel managed it in series seven but that’s after a sympathy bounce from week one which saw her safe in weeks two and three.

      Surely they’re going to give her feelgood moment before potentially diposing of her? Especially after Sharon forgot her name tonight (which I don’t think was scripted). As said it’s getting too close to the bone now in terms of feeling uncomfortable; almost as though they’ve seen that Strictly has a racism discussion surounding it and don’t want to be left out.

      • eurovicious

        It is racist. I’ve only seen fragments of the show but it’s gone from the comedy foreigner routine into open dismissive belittling and hostility, dimishing the humanity of someone because they’re foreign. They couldn’t get away with it if she were non-white, probably not even if she were Polish, and if she were from a more familiar country like France/Spain or the US/Australia they wouldn’t even try it, but somehow because she’s from an obscure yet western EU country it’s all OK. It’s an insult to ITV viewers who I’m sure aren’t as base as Saara’s treatment seems to want to think. Her name is literally the English name Sara just spelt with an extra fucking A, how hard can it be? A British contestant would never be treated like this on a European talent show. It’s reflective of our moral, societal and cultural decay in this country. So much for Tony Blair’s respect agenda.

        • In fact, Matthew Raymond-Barker, an X Factor bootcamp reject, even won the 2011 series of the X Factor in France – of all places – falling to the bottom 2 only once in Week 8 being then saved by all judges who showered him with praise.
          The difference in treatment is shocking, considering Saara is a world away in vocal talents.
          As a happy-go-lucky Portuguese national living in Britain, the “it’s gone from the comedy foreigner routine into open dismissive belittling and hostility, diminishing the humanity of someone because they’re foreign” instantly hit close to home, especially after Brexit.
          The show’s attempt at capturing the zeitgeist is appalling and Sharon’s “forgetfulness” is downright offensive for me as a fellow EU national.
          This would never ever happen in Portugal or in fact in Finland – daughter of Portuguese expats Anna Abreu was runner-up in the third season of Finnish Idol and still enjoys a highly successful Pop career to this day (she even sang fully in Portuguese in the Final!).
          I’m baffled but not surprised that Oxfam hasn’t received any complaints yet but that would help the machine more than harm.

    • 360

      I honestly think its the clothes.

      She’s nearly had her privates out with the cuts of the dresses they’ve given her two weeks in a row. I can see plenty viewers taking umbrage to that, especially given the category she’s in – Overs – who are made out to be much older than acts in the other categories.

      I personally find her sympathetic in the way I felt sympathy for Abi after Sharon made her cry. But that’s as far as my emotion towards her goes – and that’s only after she’s been criticised for several weeks. There’s not much about her that motivates me to support her. She’s very theatrical and Eurovisiony, and she’s already been on a lot of shows like this in the past. If anyone researches or reads about that, they’re going to see her as greedy, wanting to ‘come over here’ and do it all again.

      She also could have been close to 4th bottom in the vote both weeks so far. There’s been 11 acts both weeks; between 7th and 8th of 11 both times round isn’t a *terrible* showing for an act who’s foreign, painted as an outsider, given unhelpful storylines and generally unfavoured by production and undermined by her own mentor at every turn.

  • Lara T

    I think Honey is safe for a few weeks at least. There are so many in the drop zone at the moment. Ryan, Relley, Saara, possibly Emily, 4od, Sam etc…

    Lots of time to play…

  • Kitty’s Twitter is worth a read again this year, especially if you’re emotionally invested in Saara.

    • Fudd

      Talking of Kitty, I can’t help but wonder if they’re going to lumber Saara with It’s Oh So Quiet by Bjork after Simon said she should be ‘crazier’ – not that it helped Kitty in week two, finishing tenth out of twelve from the pimp slot.

  • eurovicious

    Fanks 4 droppin dis hot new article Danny G. Big up da Sofabet massive, keep it real

  • Kitty

    Hey guys 🙂 big reader of Sofabet here (yes it is me :-))))
    I feel really sorry for Saara – I can’t figure out what it is that’s not getting her the votes, she got a lot of support on Twitter. She reminds me of Ruth Lorenzo quite a bit. She should come out on Divas week, wearing a floaty white dress and sing Over the Rainbow. If that doesn’t do it, well, nothing will. England sucks, that’s why I left.
    Interestingly, there’s an article from Bradley (Bratavio) about how Gifty is acting all “I’ve won this already” backstage. Apparently she is very ambitious. If that’s true, I wonder how long that will be allowed to carry on – she won’t win the show with a bad attitude, they won’t let her. She really doesn’t come across like that on stage though, and I really like her performances.
    Sam Lavery is always just slightly out of tune btw. I cant watch her performances without hearing it.
    Matt Terry has this in the bag I think. He’s heads and shoulders above the rest.

    • EM

      Thank goodness someone else has noticed Sam’s troubles!! Still it’s not a singing competition so who knows?!

    • Jessica Hamby

      Hey Kitty

      Interesting about Gifty. I wonder if she was asked to return by the producers and so believes that she is particuarly favoured. Perhaps she doesn’t reaslise that producer support is no guarantee of winning, never mind post-show success. Tamera Foster has disappeared without a trace and Louisa Johnson is still struggling to win people over. Fleur did well but didn’t win (and if I hear that bloody Sax again I might just shoot myself – it’s just a knock-off of Uptown Funk).

      Saara has been portrayed as unappealing and dislikeable. Culturally Finns are quite different from Brits and it’s possible that the producers have misread that or (more likely imo) they’re just using her as fodder because that’s what they do to a bunch of acts every year. Personally I like her a lot but my personal favourites don’t tend to do well in the show. Over The Rainbow would be sweet to look at but I don’t think it matters what she does. Osborne will still forget her name and they will emphasise her foreignness like it’s a badge of shame and our country will take another step towards “most undignified nation” status. Soon all we will be known for is being the “and finally” bit in other countries’ news – all Honey G and Marmie rows while the country decays into poverty, isolation and ignorance.

    • Jessica Hamby

      Can you link to the Bradley Bratavio interview you mentioned?

    • stoney

      Hi Kitty a few questions
      Assuming you are really kitty.
      Have you ever posted on here before, under a different tag name?
      Was you reading sofabet When you was on the show?
      Absolutely spot on about Matt, how hope you have a few quid on him 🙂

    • India Marie

      Hi Kitty. Love love love you so much

      From your experience, how cognizant are the acts on the show regarding how the show handles things? Surely after so many weeks, they can sense that either they’re being pushed to win or that they are lambs to the slaughter.

      On that note, I think our awareness of how some acts are pushed to win/lose have desensitised us when someone, say, gets Red and Blacked with a bad song. It’s quite refreshing to see a level of indignance towards how bad the show is treating “Zara from “; for a show that has quite a global influence (only surpassed by the first 8 seasons of Idol), seeing a tinge of nativism is sickening.

    • 360

      One thing I have noticed about Gifty – she says every week after her performances that she is “fighting”, sometimes that she’s nervous, and gives the impression that she’s here to win.

      I can understand people taking against her for that. She’s one contestant unwilling to – or unable to notice that she’s meant to – keep up the facade of being there to do her best and entertain people. But at the same time, what she’s saying gives the impression that she doesn’t feel her talent can speak for itself. And likewise, the constant reminders from her that she has nerves and has to fight them down starts to send the impression that she isn’t a natural or isn’t naturally a performer – it ironically starts to send the message that this might not be the place for her.

      I would hazard a guess that she has been invited back, yes – but also buttered up by producers as to how talented she is. In actuality, she herself doubts that she is good enough – her confidence knocked by last year, and her having a slight sneaking suspicion that she genuinely doesn’t have a big enough voice for the songs they’re giving her. Because that’s accurate – she’s struggling to hit some of the bigger notes that are at the limits of her range and belting power.

    • fused

      Hi Kitty. ‘I Wanna Get Out’ is still one of my favourite X Factor related tracks for what it’s worth.

      “She should come out on Divas week, wearing a floaty white dress and sing Over the Rainbow. If that doesn’t do it, well, nothing will.”

      You know, I was thinking that I like Saara’s sing-off performances a lot more than her main live show ones. Her talent shows more when she’s allowed to have the stage all to herself and show what a great voice she has and how well she can perform just on her own. In her live show ones there has always been so much distracting stuff going on with all the scenery, props and dancers. I don’t know if it looks a bit too musical theatre for the audience? Maybe it would be a good idea for them to to just have her on stage herself and let her sing. Simon Cowell said they should make it more crazy, but if anything I think they should do the opposite of that. Of course, sadly either way the damage might have been done now, and that’s before even taking into account getting over the hurdle of how horribly xenophobic the British public can be.

  • Rose L

    Gosh, how do you follow that – in regard to the post a couple of entries above? Hi Kitty – good to see you finally writing here! Quite by coincidence I was just reading Kitty’s tweets when I read that post.
    I am still angry about Saara’s increasingly awful treatment and have decided I will be transferring my free app votes her way. I know it won’t mean much and it won’t reflect how I feel about her as a performer either, but it will make me feel a bit less disgusted at the way she has been treated. It seems to me that with all this publicity about foreigners who live here being told to “go home” and other similar racist attacks since the Brexit vote, the show thinks it has somehow captured the zeitgeist with this treatment of Saara and/or this context makes it ok to treat her in this way. I’m usually very cynical about X Factor but racism, in whatever form it comes, sickens me.
    As others have mentioned, quite rightly, they wouldn’t dare do this to a black contestant but somehow a white European is fair game.
    I don’t like Saara as a performer but part of that is what she is wearing and that isn’t her fault really. Anyway, I do think she is due a sympathy vote after this week.
    One thing about the comments about Gifty, in the post above – I thought I saw something like that on her face a couple of times. One of the backstage shots of her this week saw her looking very triumphant and smug, rather than the standard happy but humble. It wouldn’t entirely surprise me if she were as Bradley has apparently described. Whether this will mark her card as someone who won’t be allowed to win, I don’t know. It may simply be seen as useful ambition by tptb.

  • David Cook

    The good news for Saara is that it’s diva’s week, and as Sharon said she is “the diva of all diva’s”. Or perhaps she was talking about Zara from Norway….. or “that girl from abroad”…..or Relley.
    The sing off was almost as one sided as last week – I suspect they took it to deadlock just to show that Saara wasn’t bottom of the vote. It’s good to show the public that everything’s fair and above board.

    • Jessica Hamby

      Her big moment before being unceremoniously shoved under a big Halloween themed bus? Seems likely. They can takes the opportunity to weaken others and even engineer a “lovers’ tiff” sing off between Ryan and Emily if she’s low enough in the vote. One thing’s for sure. She won’t be given the producer support she needs to seriously challenge for a top 3/4 finish. Even Honey G will finish ahead.of het.

    • India Marie

      This reminds me of the joke that the reason why Honey G inserts her name in her performances is so Mrs. O will remember her.

  • Joe

    There will almost certainly be a Emily v Ryan head to head sing off at some stage. I thought both were poor this week, Emily must be dropping down the percentages and Ryan was there near the bottom yesterday. Can Honey G make the final do we think? Would tptb want that in terms of credibility?

    Also I thought at the start a band was due a win (yes I backed the wrong horse in betting on Brooks Way, ha, please don’t laugh). 5 after Midnight have a few dance moves but vocals seem ropey, would they be able to sop Matt Terry from winning??

    • India Marie

      It’s not your fault. I know someone who bet on Emily Nakanda 9 years ago.

      I feel like the “boy-biased” predicting regime is officially over; my mindset feels stuck in 2013 given how quick and easy boy-killing is currently.

  • David Cook

    No doubt some will think this is a bonkers idea – but I’d actually love to see Saara do a proper mezzo soprano aria this week. Well they did say its diva’s week. Something like ‘O Mio Bambino Caro’ (as Lucy O’Byrne did on the Voice) would be brilliant – sung in Italian of course. She’d obviously go out – but the idea of the best singer in the competition doing this and then going out whilst the H to the O etc sails through would make the whole thing look even more ridiculous. And at least she’d escape the ignominy of fright night.

  • Looks like there’s a second show relationship, Kyle Brooks and Caroline (4oD). Wonder how they can use that now, if at all. What did they put in the water this year….


    • India Marie

      Replace them with Scarl3t!!!!!

    • Jessica Hamby

      Kyle is the *good* brother I think. Keeps the show in the news for starters.

      I think the only tbing that can derail Matt is if tptb decide to really get behind 4OD like they did with LM. They’d have to get some public support before that happened. The Jesy Nelson fat-shaming thing gave them a massive push and I think 4OD need something similar. Those kinds of things can’t be contrived, they just happen.

      As far as this goes it’s interesting tbat tbe headline calls him “shamed”. Doesn’t sound good.

    • David Cook

      This seems to be a negative – associating with the ‘shamed’ act, even if it is with wrong brother – rather than a positive. The natural course of things would seem to be that Matt and 5am are the acts which would pick up most votes without producer interference. They would need to derail both before 4OD stand any chance. On Saturday both acts were hyped above the level of their actual performance. Even the slight criticism from Simon for Matt was probably just to allow to build him up more next week. 4OD got the pimp slot as expected, but otherwise they were fairly middling. There’s probably one spot in the final still up for grabs, but I think that’s the best they can possibly hope for.

      • I agree, and I don’t think it’s likely either Matt or 5AM will derail let alone both. As someone who finds them interesting I’m just hoping they can pick up enough buzz to be allowed into a 3rd or 4th place finish and signed. They haven’t totally figured it out yet but they have some potential and if forced to pick I would certainly launch them ahead of any of the girls this year.

        I’m not even sure it would be good for them to win with Little Mix peaking hard. Syco would need to very carefully massage that relationship like senior/junior groups on kpop labels. I know LM and Fifth Harmony have co-existed for years but their bases are on different continents.

        • Jessica Hamby

          With LM the rest of the field were all damaged by tptb so that they weee h

          • Now come on Jess, you’re going to end up like Mrs O lol x

          • All the plan A contestants in LM’s season derailed themselves before the producers climbed on board LM. Janet fought with the producers, Misha fought with Tulisa, Nu Vibe fought with each other, and Frankie was simply too poor vocally, perhaps worsened by his partying.

            Simon closed his comments on 4oD with the big P-word (potential) he also used on 5AM during their audition but I don’t see any reason he’d get off his other horses at the moment.

  • Some good theorising here folks.

    Welcome on board, Kitty… loving your Tweets as always. Gambling is the reason I still watch this show but hey. It gives a new level of enjoyment to an otherwise tired production.

    Our Eurovision contingent will have already watched this but for those who haven’t, this is from YLE’s National Final in 2011…


    • “They whisper and they shout some things I shouldn’t hear […] They try to break me down, try to make me fail, try to make feel like I’m not worth it all.” Dem lyrics bruv.

      And it’s a metric fuckton better than Paradise Oskar. Finland should have bare sent this in 2011. Note also, according to Wikipedia: Music & lyrics – Saara Aalto. She composed a song that elegant and sophisticated herself, she’s the voice of Frozen in Finland, what is she doing debasing herself on the scripted reality show masquerading as talent contest (barely even masquerading anymore) that is X Factor UK? It’s like Robbie Williams trying to break America all over again… sometimes it’s best to stay where you’re known and loved. X Factor doesn’t even let artists sing their own songs, it’s just gimp karaoke with soap storylines.

      This says it all for me: https://twitter.com/PeteJLewis/status/772538920911376384

      • David Cook

        The bizarre answer may be because they scouted her. From YouTube it appears that she’s a regular on a Finnish TV programme produced by Freemantle – perhaps that’s the connection.

  • Edie M

    Surely if it’s a three act final Simon will want a girl in there? He didn’t have an act last time for the first time ever and I imagine he won’t want that to happen twice in a row?

  • Henry VIII

    “I feel really sorry for Saara – I can’t figure out what it is that’s not getting her the votes, she got a lot of support on Twitter.”

    Yeah, you can figure it out if you’re familiar with this site. They’ve gone into 100% destroy mode with Saara (or more accurately keep-her-alive-but-helpless mode).

    Probably 90% mode with Emily and then declining… until only Matt and 5am have had total positivism.

    (Twitter maybe a motivated small minority and maybe some Finns).

  • EM

    Ah the lovely Saara – taking up way more pixels now after week two than she will when the series is over.

    For me she’s failing to connect because:
    1. She closes her eyes (or almost does) when she sings
    2. She’s a great singer, as witnessed in the sing-offs, but when performance/choreography is required it all becomes a bit one dimensional belt-it-out-loud
    3. She’s foreign (and not just in a UKIP way but just in the way that culturally it’s harder for her to connect)
    4. She’s foreign so has no regional vote to count on
    5. Her treatment from the show has been “she’s utterly forgettable” and “she’s Finnish-ed”.
    6. Her look is definitely not nice-girl-next-door.

    Add to that her type of act has always found it hard to get a head of steam up on X Factor it really is no surprise she’s not polling well.

    However with Diva week coming I could see them build a whole feel good – bottom two twice – now pimp slot storyline where she is given a song she can excel at, sing rather than perform and be first named safe on Sunday.

    Watch this space….

    • Curtis

      But she hasn’t done the full Katie Waissel yet – three sing-off saves in a row! I’m torn as to whether they’ll do what you said or bomb her again so that they can save her yet again and start creating some controversy. Either way I’ve got a feeling she sticks around for another week or two.

  • Woofie

    Perhaps it’s me but I don’t understand why people think that 4OD will have producer support going forwards. I didn’t get that vibe on Saturday. I was expecting something unique (for xfactor) “retro with a modern twist”.. from the girls but it felt very ordinary to me. Their intros felt just as cheesy and corny as YesLads… Group intros have turned into a bit of parody after SK.

    The producers have invested a lot into 5AM. I couldn’t believe that was a week two performance. Vocals could be an issue but everything else was spot on… Worth pointing out the music played into the audience reaction, high register, beats to clap to etc.”Excitement” used by Simon and Louis to describe them and I expect to be a running theme. I do wonder if the group was put together by the show or an associate.. it all seems very opportunistic otherwise.

    To get a group to the final they need to appeal to more than the usual teenage girls, which I think is a diminishing audience for the show.
    I think 5AM are “designed” to appeal to the widest cross section of the audience… dancing, 3 instead of 5, good looking without being boyband cute, very polite, hard working, family etc., all being used to that effect. They probably have mapped out song choices, choreography, staging etc. I tried to gage twitter reaction they got nods from lads, older and younger viewers a like.

    I wait to see this week how 4OD get treated. Divas you would think is best suited to all the girls.. but I expect Matt and 5AM do well with it surprisingly… I think a narrative is being set up and whilst Louis will be praised for his efforts with 5AM I am expecting him to take the “blame” if 4OD falter…

    • Fudd

      I’m fully expecting them to bury Four of Diamonds this week; despite their pimp slot return they were given no vocal support whatsoever in You Keep In Hanging On, the backing was bland with no dancers and cold colours. They did enough to give them a welcome back and now I think it’ll be a case of thank you and goodbye.

      I’d still maintain that Sharon’s name flub was a mistake on her part on Sunday but either way they need to give Saara a feelgood moment before disptahcing her – like they gave Abi a moment with I Will Survive after Mrs O made her breakdown in tears. They’ll make sure Sharon knows her name and I think they’ll give her some support to see her through to Halloween. Then will they paint her gold and send her to Hell?

      Who else is disposable? Freddy didn’t get a sympathy bounce after his bottom three appearance in week one but, one the flip side, they didn’t give him much support. Will they give Ryan more of a helping hand? On the face of it a Ryan v Emily bottom two will be something they’re angling for but that’d surely rely on either Matt or 5 After Midnight rounding off the bottom three? Unless they hope the split Scottish vote would see, say, Gifty or Relley safe instead.

      Emily’s treatment has hardly seen signs of improvement and Relley C was left hanging over an ad break on the edge of the bottom three but they seem to have plans for Matt, Samantha, Gifty and 5 After Midnight at the moment so, unless one of them is far too close to the bottom three for comfort and they feel an early bounce to week six or seven is needed, I think they’ll be helped.

      • Henry VIII

        4oD: Too early to say. The “positive” things you suggest would have actually been a de-ramp. Didn’t want vocal support, it was about them, and they showed they can all sing, and they also did some a cappella iirc. Dancers would have been a hopeless distraction for a 4 piece on their debut. The colours suited. They used the steps well and then came down off them and walked to the front of the stage to “join” the audience. They got past at least 3 acts which isn’t bad for a girl group debut historically.

        No golden halos and 4 judge S.O. though, which it seems the market was expecting. Next week may be the time for more colour and life etc.

        Next week will be more telling of their status either way.

        • Henry VIII

          Also they had less time to prepare and, more importantly, Cowell’s mind was on Little Mix’s performance the following day. He didn’t want anything to distract from that.

    • The reason for producers to support 4OD would be if they see a glimmer of commercial potential there now based on internet reaction, perhaps more than the girls. They aren’t a threat to Matt or 5AM nor are they fishing in the same pool for votes. Cowell closing out his comments with “potential” was at least enough to be interesting. Otherwise they might support them for a week or two up to what I assume was Brooks Way’s intended midtable finish just so the categories stay balanced.

      I see Saara and Emily as top targets for the week though they wouldn’t be bothered to lose Ryan either since he’s in a similar demo to Matt. But I am concerned by how heavily 4OD drifted on Betfair after Sunday. I suspect that market is often moved by friend of a friend insider info, and it could be that they came in barely above the B3.

    • India Marie

      imho they were underwhelming considering that this is supposed to be their forte. They are in no position to usurp Matt’s place and I can’t see them pivoting to that, but I do see them going deep if the others don’t shape up

  • Spiidey

    It’s clear, if it wasn’t before, that “Aalto-cle 50” has clearly been invoked and it’s now just a matter of what week the producers choose to boot Saara from the show.

    It still seems as if she’ll get a stay of execution with possibly the pimp spot this week and a narrow escape in maybe 7th place before being lined up for a week 4 Halloween / fright night take down from Stabby Sharon and her SaaraXiteers.

    I shouldn’t let emotions get in the way but the treatment of Saara is appalling at best. She really does have so much to offer the show as well. Her only real hope is being in the sing off and each time up against the targeted act

    • eurovicious

      This is the show that humiliated and bullied gentle, sensitive Abi to tears on national television, character-assassinated the best act it ever had just to create drama, specially invited Cory Spedding to audition just to humiliate her for a storyline, told the Pink impersonator girl to perform as Pink then mocked her for doing so, repeatedly brought back Melanie and Jade solely for storyline purposes when there was no intention of ever putting them through, etc etc. I know men have had rough treatment too (Paul Akister, and everyone’s favourite bit of rough Joseph Whelan), but there’s a real vein of misogyny that runs through this show’s treatment of its most talented young female soloists (add Lauren and Saara to the list above). It’s non-consensual scripted reality – at least in TOWIE the cast know they’re acting out storylines and have expressly agreed to do so. TXF toys with and gleefully shatters the hopes and dreams of tremendously talented young girls desperate for a break, at a formative time in their lives, with zero regard for the consequences – not only does the show not care about talent, it doesn’t care about human lives or providing basic care or aftercare to its participants. They’re just content, and the show relishes the cruelty with which it treats them because it all means more drama.

      I can’t remember whether or not I’ve told this story, but I was humiliated on German regional television in 2010 in a much more minor way but in a way not dissimilar to Saara’s treatment. Having never been taught to ride a bike during childhood due to my parents’ overprotectiveness, while living in Germany I enrolled in a 4-day course for adults to learn to cycle. The course itself was great. The local arm of Germany’s national broadcaster turned up to film it for a One Show-esque snippet on the regional news magazine, and of the 10 people taking the course (plus the 3 instructors/helpers), all they were interested in was me because I was the comedy foreigner with the accent. To cut a short story even shorter, they hardly filmed anyone else and took a load of footage of me crashing into the bushes or falling off on the first day (including putting a camera on my handlebars) then put comedy music on top of it. I cried when I saw it. I got over it in about 15 minutes but it’s a warning. The intent was not malicious but to present me as a sort of Mr Bean, and to be fair, they did show me cycling more proficiently at the end – serving a sort of ham-fisted zero-to-hero narrative – but you have no control over how you’re presented and edited on these things. I think I may even have been fine with the entire segment had they not put the comedy music on top of me. Life lesson: we all like to think we’re the protagonists in our lives, but sometimes we’re the comic relief, and if you’re fine with that then that’s OK – as long as it’s on your own terms.

  • Hi all. Don’t mind me, just passing through, I imagine you’ll be seeing more of me when ESC rears its head again. Not that this will be of much interest to you all but I felt inclined to mention anyway – I registered a complaint with Ofcom regarding Saara’s treatment and I’d encourage others to do the same.

    I think given the current political climate in Britain, the show should be more socially responsible and not incite xenophobia as a means of steering the vote. Many have already noted here how disgraceful it is.

    If TPTB want her out, they should make a case for her eccentric, theatrical style not being commercially relevant in the UK, but instead they just keep banging on about her nationality and getting her name wrong until Britain (well, the 4-odd million who still care about this shite at least) start doing a collective BB Nikki “who is she” impersonation at the telly. Makes me sick.

    Also quick hello to Kitty! Met her in High Wycombe when she was a guest judge at my University’s talent showcase where I demonstrated a game I designed.

    • Aah they’ll laugh that out like they did with Tesco Mary and the Emergency Singoff.

      • My policy on SJ stuff is – there’s stuff you can help and there’s stuff you can’t. Mary wasn’t born in Tesco but Saara was born in Finland. 😛

        • Henry VIII

          Most of them including, I anticipate, Saara ultimately benefit from the exposure. That doesn’t stop me getting that visceral repulsion of it that you and others have posted about. Even with the edge the knowledge that it’s planned brings us on this site, can’t help the natural repulsion.

  • 360

    As uncomfortable as I am with how Saara is being treated, let’s not forget they mispronounced Wagner’s name every single week too.

    “It’s VAAGNER, Louis!”

    • Jessica Hamby

      How many times did they use his nationality as a way to ridicule and belittle him? I don’t remember it happening at all.

    • I think that was partly Wagner’s pedantry rather than Louis deliberately riling him A British/Irish person is obviously going to say “Wagner” with a w rather than a v sound. When you have a less usual name you have be fine with people pronouncing it different ways, especially when abroad. Saara Aalto’s name is literally pronounced Sara Alto, which no-one should be having a problem with. This business with her name possibly wouldn’t have happened if Finnish orthography used an accent rather than a double letter to indicate a long vowel, as in Hungarian – so she’d be Sára Álto and no-one would be thrown by it.

  • I can’t understand why honey Gs price on betfair has drifted to 28 after people were backing her for fun around 17/1 on saturday. Looks a good price to me that 28 think she’ll be around for a few more weeks yet and the third final place really looks up for grabs. I can see relley, ryan,4OD, samantha and saara all biting the dust before the honey monster.

    • David Cook

      I would have though mumbling some garbage along the lines of I want to be number one at christmas over a backing track of what she’s supposed to be singing, followed by another two of the H to the O is going to put her pretty near the bottom of the pile if it’s repeated this week. I guess it depends on whether you think that’s all she’s got, or if you think she’s going to pull something else out of the bag.
      I’ve got to say I’m not the biggest fan a rap artists but from what I have heard Honey doesn’t seems to share the same primary concerns as most in her lyrical content.

      • lol david i agree with you but after reggie and bollie got to the final last year anything is possible thesedays with x factor. Reggie and bollie turning the christmas lights on in blackburn where i live this year they have made it big 🙂

  • plinkiplonk

    Just in case we need confirmation on what we are supposed to think, ‘Fleur East’ has written a column for the standard. I am putting her name in brackets, as this is clearly the official party line…

    • Great find! Most important takeaway, no mention of Emily or Sam whatsoever.

    • Curtis

      “How far will [Honey G] go? We’ll have to keep watching to find out.”

      She’s even doing the marketing for them.

      And yes, I agree with Nissl about the take-home message from that article. Emily and Sam not valued as late-game players.

  • Stu

    What do we all make of Diva Week being “randomly” chosen? Will Ryan be cursed with an acoustic version of Bleeding Love? Will this be the perfect week for a Saara bounce? Will Sam continue with her dreary ballads by taking on the essential Whitney track?

  • Curtis

    Just found out that my friend’s mum’s co-worker’s sister-in-law’s an X Factor producer. Writes Dermot’s scripts. Not even joking! Probably not going to get too much inside information from that unfortunately!

  • Stu

    Does anyone think the producers will try and engineer a “shock” elimination in order to pump up controversy and publicity for the show? The bottom three has been predictable so far. I’m not necessarily saying an Ella vs James scenario (I don’t think that was planned anyway) – more of a Laura White one.

    I can see Emily being the scapegoat (still convinced she’s gamma girl or at most joint-beta like Laura and Alexandra).

  • Rose L

    There are a few more details to the Cory Spedding story as she wrote about her experience on Facebook while awaiting a story being published about her in the Sun. It’s all of what Steve Brookstein described but with a bit more detail. What really struck me is how long they made her and her toddler hang around to be seen, how they put her on last despite telling her she was being bumped up the list as her toddler was getting exhausted and how, it would appear, two Irish twins who couldn’t sing and forgot their song went through to Bootcamp the audition before her (Jedward?) They basically worked with exhaustion and stress to manipulate the contestant. And the judges were complicit – this is truly sickening. It doesn’t come as a surprise of course, but to see the real extent of it has still stunned me. I am absolutely with Eurovicious, above, regarding the way they treat their prey – sorry, contestants.

  • Jessica Hamby

    Relly and Saara both looked in trouble last weekend from the way the results were announced. I wonder if one will gain votes at the other’s expense. Imo Gifty is intended to be 3rd finalist. We’ve talked about Saara getting a week’s grace but there’s been no sign of that. Their treatment of her (Louis’ comments) were worse on week 2 than on week 1. Obv the show will tell us but they are not sentimental and if they want to will attack her with no remorse.

    Emily’s not got a big voice” apparently but that can work for or against her. They can do a John Lewis version of a big song and tell us she put her own brilliant twist on it and all the usual waffle just as easily as berate her.

    They have a perfectly acceptable winner in Matt so they don’t need Saara getting in the way of the commercial potential (Gifty / 5am – I think Matt’s a bit boring for the charts) so I think her time might be up.

    • Stu

      I don’t think “John Lewising” a song will do Emily any favours – look at what it did to Ella Henderson. I think the JL trend is dead and buried.

      With Saara, I’m leaning more towards the producers giving her a chance to properly shine this week. Her vote is undoubtedly under control and with the show trying to move into a more light-hearted direction, having the foreigner (she’s essentially defined by her nationality on XF) bottom three for 3 weeks in a row and then eliminated doesn’t really make the brand look good to a lot of the audience – especially after Louis’ brutal comments last weekend. Can she bounce to 7th in the vote though? Ryan and 4OD could easily poll lower than her. I’m guessing Relley is probably polling mid-table… and will people tire of Honey G after a third week of “when I say Honey, you say G”?

  • Allan

    I believe Relley is polling really well much better than TPTB had expected! If you look at the various XF commentary forums other than Honey G she seems to be the most widely discussed and appreciated contestant. In online polls she’s coming out in the top 3 on every one I’ve seen. What remains to be seen is if the producers go with this or set out to sabotage her? As she would be unlikely to pose any threat to Matt or 5am i think it’s distinctly possible they may go with her and look to her being the 3rd place contestant

    • Phil

      There’s always an act that tops online polls that ultimately doesn’t live up to the expectations. Just like Eurovision.

    • Edie M

      I was surprised at how well Relley did in the tellymix poll last weekend. She could well be doing better than we think, especially as her voice seems stronger than it actually is in such a weak year for vocals. I wonder if we’ve been too quick to decide that leaving her as one of the last to be called safe means she was just above the dropzone- it might be because they wanted to give the impression she was not doing very well in order to dampen her vote?

    • Sagand

      She is doing well in polls but badly by other statistics. Her performance last week was the second least viewed on youtube ahead of only Ryan and on Spotify she was ahead of only 4OD and Saara (level with Ryan). That would put her on the bubble for bottom three this week depending on bounces.

      • Allan

        Could this signify that it is the older end of XF viewers that are voting for her? I would imagine that typically it’s the younger end that use Spotify and in terms of You Tube not needed because of Sky + ….Just a thought?

        • Sagand

          I would guess Relley’s voter are older. But I don’t think that is what is causing the gap between youtube / Spotify and fan polls. It’s showing if you take a small section of a fan community they invent a different narrative than the wider public sees.

          There is no data source that perfectly correlates with the vote but I put more faith in a youtube clip with hundreds of thousands of views than a poll with three thousand votes.

  • Allan

    I agree and that act is clearly Saara Alto whose results I’ve pretty much discounted in the assumption her votes are Finnish based

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