Five still-delayed-by-my-holiday-and-the-various-other-commitments-in-my-life things about the third round of arena auditions.
1. Come back Kate The Vicar, all is forgiven: Having spent an alarming chunk of the last two series pretending to be The Only Way Is Essex, in this episode The X Factor decided it also wanted a piece of that sweet, sweet, Bafta award-winning Gogglebox action. To wit: Chloe Jasmine joined her parents in the drawing room and they just happened to catch her audition episode being broadcast. Spontaneously, you know. “Oh look, it’s that programme I was on that I told you about”, that sort of thing. Chloe Jasmine’s parents, God love them, looked as if they had no idea what a television was, much less an X Factor. (And frankly, I’d much rather see what they made of The Face anyway.) After that Chloe Jasmine returned to croon her way through ‘Why Don’t You Do Right?’ for the arena crowd, and Cheryl applauded her “old-school Hollywood glamour”. Simon seemed fractionally less impressed, but put that down to just having not found the right song yet. He likes her, however, because they’ve never had anyone like her on the show before. Personally I think she’s not a million miles away from Katie Waissel, but what do I know?
2. Here Comes The Raign Agaign: So, Raign. She was a thing that happened, wasn’t she? And she returned, yet again, because Cheryl’s hatred for her was visible from space, and the show can’t let a drama mine like that go untapped. Her return was a little bit underwhelming on every other level: she sang the exact same self-penned song that we’d already heard in her room audition (presumably this is the same one that’s #13 in Siberia or whatever?). Cheryl attempted to undermine her when Raign asked for a mic stand for her performance by sneering that perhaps she’d like a gin and tonic as well – now, I’m no Raign fan by any stretch of the imagination but I don’t think it’s entirely unreasonable to ask for a mic stand when you’re about to sing a song. She wasn’t even that much of an asshole about it. Whatever, I’m bored of Raign simpering at Simon and I’m bored of Cheryl snarling at Raign and I’m sure I’ve got weeks, possibly months of it left, so I’ll just be over here sobbing in the corner.
3. Addictiv Substance: A lot has been made of the number of returnees this series, but I don’t think any of us were expecting an Addictiv Lady to come all the way back from series two. Indeed, several people on Twitter were questioning the legality of this, because we were under the general impressions that once you’ve made the live shows, that’s it for you. But maybe there’s some sort of statute of limitations on it, or maybe it’s different if you were in a band. Perhaps Phoebe will come back and audition again without the Woo Woo Girls one day? (Although she actually auditioned as a solo artist in the first place, so maybe that’s different.) Anyway, Fleur East was one of Addictiv Ladies back in the day, and recalls how in the first live show they “got to the bottom two” (very euphemistic way to phrase it) and lost out to Chico, of all people. Apparently she’s 26 now, so she must have been about 16 at the time? She sang ‘Ordinary People’ for her audition, and Simon was pretty bored by it, but she got three yeses. I kind of liked her – her voice is kind of scratchy, but I like that she’s one of the very few soloists who’s made any attempt to dance in her audition.
4. Was Not Given The Boot: Skiving shoe saleswoman Kerrianne Covell came back, and informed us all that she is currently still gainfully employed, more’s the pity. I still find her entirely objectionable as a human being, but everyone else seems to like her, so I’m resigning myself to being bored stupid by her for most of the live shows. She told the judges that she would be singing a Carrie Underwood song, and Simon crowed that he “discovered her”. I’m not sure “being sat there in the American Idol audition room when she walked in after having been scouted by producers” really counts as discovering her, but whatever gets you through the night, pet. Anyway, she sang it, and she sang it pretty well, but I still can’t stand her stupid face. So there.
5. Scarlett Lady: After ditching her husband, Whatsisname, during the room auditions, Brighton’s Scarlett Quinn, formerly of Kitten And The Hip, came back to make her debut as a solo artist. The show decided it hadn’t quite finished mocking her for ditching the bloke, and highlighted the poor girl repeatedly accidentally talking about him in the past tense, even though to my mind that’s an entirely normal way to talk about someone who you were in a band with in the past, but whom you are no longer in a band with. Anyway, she sang Xtina’s ‘Ain’t No Other Man’, and it’s basically cheap Xtina karaoke and it’s clear that she’s actually a little bit lost on her own, but the judges like how she’s totally pre-packaged and ready for launch, so they decide to keep her around a bit longer.
Next: the last of the arena auditions, before everyone’s favourite bit returns. Oh yeah, SIX CHAIR CHALLENGE bitches