The X Factor is known for causing a stir with its token ‘joke acts’, but have they gone too far this time?
This year has already seen female rap artist Honey G, who was initially denied a spot at judges’ houses in the ‘six seat challenge’ part of the contest, sail through to the lives in a ‘wildcard’ twist. She was joined by Louis Walsh’s pick Bradley and Ottavio. The pair met at uni, formed a group, fell out over a piece of uncooked chicken. The video of their emotional reunion during their auditions went viral a few weeks ago.
Even previous contestants of the show took to social media to express their anger: 2011 act Kitty Brucknell thinks that Honey G “makes a mockery of the entire show” .
While it’s easy to tell people to lighten up – this is reality TV after all – and enjoy the dubious entertainment, last year’s hopeful Ben Clark tweeted to remind us of the serious side. The contestants in the ‘over 25s’ category have been robbed of what might be their last chance at a big break by a middle aged woman in a baseball cap who thinks she can rap.
The X Factor’s golden period producing global stars – Leona Lewis, One Direction, Olly Murs and Little Mix to name a few – seems to be over, as the careers of most recent winners Sam Bailey, Ben Haenow and Louisa Johnson have fizzled out after their winner’s singles were released. In the show’s early years, the ratings battle between the X Factor and Strictly Come Dancing was a tough-wrought contest. Last week, X Factor hit an all-time low and was beaten by Strictly by almost three million viewers.
Even the addition of two controversial acts, the X Factor simply can’t compete in the reality TV stakes, losing viewers week by week with its predictable format and lack of talent. I think it’s time for Simon Cowell to quit while he’s (just about) ahead, before producing yet another bland series with an unsuccessful winner.