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So anyway,
Because what the Net really needs is another person sharing his uninformed views
The Ten Thousand Maniacs Factor 
11th-Dec-2011 12:20 pm
Previously on The X Factor, Misha finally went home, and even those of us who liked her were rather relieved. This week it’s the final, which like last year I’m going to split into two posts, and first up Saturday’s show. There are numbers on the screen! The numbers are getting smaller, because this is what happens when you have a lot of people and then you have less people. I have to say, The X Factor’s determination this year to teach the nation subtraction has been admirable. The number we are left with is 3. That’s three.

The final is at WEM-BER-LEY Arena, in front of ten thousand screaming idiots instead of however many there usually are. HETEROSEXUAL Dermot’s HETEROSEXUAL entrance is an Austin Powers themed VT of him dancing around That London, being hailed a cab by Goldie, travelling to WEM-BER-LEY in said cab which ends up on stage. He gets out and jiggles with his wimminz some more. There are no words. Well, “make it stop” are words, I guess. The judges get introduced, we get another VT of the finalists each saying they want it most, as if that’s a reason to win, and then the final three acts do a number together. It’s Take That’s “Greatest Day” because apparently this show hasn’t rimmed Barlow quite enough just yet. Oatibix get the biggest cheer from the ten thousand maniacs, just so you know.

After the break, PROFESSIONAL SCOUSER MARCUS is on first, and he goes back to Liverpool WHERE HE IS FROM because to be fair it’s a couple of weeks since he mentioned it. He goes by helicopter so we can see LIVERPOOL FROM ABOVE, sings at his old school, then goes back to his mum’s house. All his family are there, as is presumably his boyfriend of several years, but this is not mentioned because it was OK to mention Marcus’ sexuality on screen when it was assumed he was mid-series fodder, but now he’s a finalist so let’s keep things ITV1, shall we? Then Gary turns up for everyone to fawn over because if he’s not careful the actual act might get all the attention in his own home. Now for Marcus’ first performance and oh thank fuck, someone’s remembered this show is supposed to be a load of camp old fun. The performance is 1960s aviation-themed, proving that someone’s actually been watching Pan Am. The song is “Hay Ya,” and possibly to make up for Him Indoors being erased from the VT Marcus sings the opening line as “My baby don’t mess around because he loves me so.” And if the lady dancers as stewardesses was a bit heterosexual, we get the male dancers in sleeveless high-vis jackets after a while. I mean, it’s not Jedward mental, but we’ll take what we can get. Oh, right, the singing. It’s not great. No satellite link-up to the home towns, no Stacey Solomon *sadface* instead the families have been dragged to WEM-BER-LEY with Olly FUCKING Murs and Caroline CRADLEROBBER presenting. Marcus’ former singing teacher is there, Marcus thanks him because “he got me here” and, just off-camera, Barlow disowns Marcus because officially ONLY BARLOW may get credit for helping Marcus and he’s gone off-message, the bastard.

There’s more than one OATIBIX so their home town tour takes them to High Wycombe for Leigh-Anne, Romford for Lion-O (where teenage girls are overcome with emotion at seeing four women who DON’T HATE EACH OTHER DESPITE BEING WOMEN) and Geordieland for the two Geordie ones. Their first song is “You Got The Love,” there’s a bit of a military drumbeat and the Wand Erection Memorial Backing Singers sound OK. The staging theme hasn’t decided what it is, with free-running dancers at the start, Oatibix arriving on the backs of motorcycles and the dancers waving flags around in a Marxist uprising. The judges say words, Lion-O cries.

Kelly, desperate that her act not win because it’s be embarrassing after she dumped her in the first week, introduces MAYBE PINK BLEACHED HAIR WILL MAKE ME INTERESTING. She’s been back to Middlesbrough, where people are excited to see someone who knows someone who knows Beyoncé. Dressed as a pink toilet roll holder, Amelia barks Christina Aqualung’s “Ain’t No Other Man.” For crying out loud, cameraman, don’t shoot her from so low down, with her legs this far apart we can see her tonsils from the wrong direction.

Time for the first guest performance, and The X Factor must have a real problem with the fact that JLS actually knew each other before auditioning and weren’t a Frankenband, because they’re really determined to mash them into a single entity with Wand Erection. They’re doing a mash-up of “Make Me Wanna” and “What Makes You Beautiful,” two songs that don’t fit together particularly well so the mash-up’s more of a pile-up.

Usually the finalists get to sing with a guest act, but this year the standards are so low they couldn’t find anyone desperate enough to do it so they’re each duetting with their mentors FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER as Dermot tells us thirty-seven times in the first minute. MARCUS up first again, he’ll be dedicating “Always A Woman” to his mum because they had a hard life, which involved walking to school sometimes. Yeah, as sob stories go it could try harder. Gary’s on the piano obviously, and fair play, he’s being pretty shit with his vocals, which I’m sure is a deliberate thing to make Marcus look good and not a sign that there are actually limits to Barlow’s talents. Back to the crowd where someone has made Marcus’ face out of Marmite on toast because this is the sort of thing that seems like a good idea in this show’s parallel universe. Olly FUCKING Murs eats a piece thereby making it no longer look like Marcus, because he’s managed to miss the point.

OATIBIX are so pleased to have Toula CONTOSTAVLOU as a mentor because she’s like a friend, who cooks for them and gives them DIARRHOEA. They do an Alicia Keys medley of “If I Ain’t Got You” and “Empire State of Mind” and it’s as you’d expect. Then we go to Olly FUCKING Murs who’s talking to the mayor and “mayonnaise” (I think you mean “mayoress” Olly) of South Shields, and turning away very quickly when he realises he can’t understand a word the mayor is saying. Caroline CRADLEROBBER is also present. Nobody has made Oatibix’s faces out of food, which is a missed opportunity I feel – they could have made them out of Oatibix.

After some more products that are available for purchase, Dermot tries again to make us care about that iPhone clapometer game or whatever it is, and even he can’t keep a straight face when he claims people are actually playing the thing. In her VT, MAYBE PINK BLEACHED A BIT PINK AGAIN HAIR WILL MAKE ME INTERESTING is amazed that she’s now “pals” with Kelly Row-land; yes pickle, try giving your pal a call this time next week, see what happens. Amelia and Kelly are duetting on “River Deep, Mountain High.” Really Kelly, green shoes with that gold dress? Er, yeah, maybe that’s as much as I should say. Let’s just agree that like the ones before, the mentor is very kindly allowing their act to sound better in comparison. Yes, all this is definitely deliberate. Nobody has made Amelia Lily’s face out of chopped liver but someone’s made a pink fruit smoothie in her honour, which once again Olly FUCKING Murs wants to get into his face. He acts as if he’s downing a pint of Absinthe or something. Amelia says “I know you’re out there Dad!” and we all know dear, we’ve just seen him talking to Olly FUCKING Murs. These satellite link-ups to somewhere else in the same room are at least fooling someone I guess.

Time for some guest acts as they count the votes to figure out which Amelia Lily will be going home first. Leonabot 3000 is first with a song from a 3-track EP she’s releasing specially for her fans for Christmas. As the track is Nine Inch Nails’ smack addiction favourite “Hurt,” in a performance that makes Professional Scouser Rebecca look animated, I can only imagine Leona wishes her fans a Christmas straight out of Eastenders. The votes have been frozen, and the next act is “friend of the show” Michael BOOB-LAY. With friends like these, Michael BOOB-LAY doesn’t need enemies. Is he fit BOOB-LAY or fat BOOB-LAY this year? He’s fat BOOB-LAY, which is a relief, as whenever BOOB-LAY’s a bit fanciable it’s disturbing and wrong. The song is “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” and Dermot asks if it’s from his Christmas album. D’YOU THINK?

In no particular order, OATIBIX are through to the top two, as is, after the requisite too-long pause, PROFESSIONAL SCOUSER MARCUS. Which means MAYBE PINK BLEACHED A BIT PINK AGAIN HAIR WILL MAKE ME INTERESTING finishes in third place, and we get to see her JOURNEY again. Which involved her JOURNEYING away from the show and back again, and getting to the final purely on the basis of getting on air so late people didn’t have time to get sick of her. (She should so thank Kelly for booting her in week 1; if she’d gone through the process normally she’d have been lucky to make it to the halfway point.)

Let’s wrap this up then because we’ve got this all to do again tonight, with Marcus vs Oatibix, and everyone wanting Oatibix to win: Oatibix fans because they like them, and Marcus fans because they also like him, and know that winning this thing would be an absolute disaster for him. We know how this show works by now, it’s been running long enough. Oh and just before the credits, a quick reminder that you can book tickets for the X Factor concert next year. You don’t have to go yourself, just give them to someone you don’t like.
11th-Dec-2011 12:50 pm (UTC)
I rather suspect the X Factor producers don't look at Twitter very well. They see that "Dermot dance" is trending, so assume "hey, everyone thinks this is a brilliant and funny iconic bit of Saturday night entertainment, we should do more with it!". Except if they were to just click on "Dermot dance" they would see that the messages are more along the lines of "OH DEAR GOD PLEASE MAKE THE DERMOT DANCE STOP". Silly producers.

Mind you, with two hours to fill, I suppose they've got to pad the episode out with *something*...
11th-Dec-2011 08:11 pm (UTC)
Mind you, with two hours to fill, I suppose they've got to pad the episode out with *something*...

Can't they just pad it with five-minute-long recaps of what happened in the previous five minutes? Like the rest of the show?
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