Talent in a Previous Life

Because It's Never Just About the Music

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

The Next Factor 

After all the intrigue, backbiting, apologies, some more backbiting and a bit of hand wringing as they tried to ascertain whether anyone still even cares about what goes on in the programme, the makers of The X Factor, have finally revealed who'll be replacing the hapless Kate Thornton and Louis Walsh in their respective roles on the programme. Although given that the main 'innovation' for this year's series seems to be the reduction of the age limit down to 14, an age where, since we left Victorian times at any rates, society generally tends to expect you to be in school, getting an education and generally trying to make something of your life, rather than spending at best ten weeks on a pisspoor talent show where the only education you're likely to get is in the fields of failure and humiliation and the best your life will be able to offer you even if you do manage to win the whole sorry shebang is a few appearances on local radio and a "Where are They Now?" feature twenty years down the line, they may well be glad that they're no longer a part of the escapade.

Stepping into Kate's immaculate, if often ill-matching, heels is Dermot O'Leary, a man whose probably best known for his work hosting Big Brother's Little Brother, the magazine show which, if the last series was anything to go by, had the main job of awkwardly trying not to mention racism and instead search desperately for any sort of lighter moment, no matter how insignificant and irrelevant compared to what the rest of the country was talking about. Given his obvious uncomfortableness with the way Celebrity Big Brother turned out - and, as our CBB coverage should indicate, we know exactly how he feels, albeit we didn't have to do it in front of somewhat larger audience - it's no wonder that he's decided to jump ship. It seems unlikely that this year's edition of X Factor will have a race hate element to it, but even if it did we can't really see the judges getting too uptight about it, merely saying of a band that turns up in white hoods and performing against a backdrop of burning crosses: "Well, you attempted something bold and original there, but you didn't quite pull it off. Well done for trying, though!".

Ah the judges, and while Dermot may have been an obvious choice for the role of host - although our hopes were resting firmly on the shoulders of the lovely Fearne Cotton - choosing who was to fill Louis' slightly stained and unpleasantly warm seat must have been a much harder choice. After all, who else will, with the worldly expertise of the Westlife manager, be able to sit there and describe every act on the show as "A young X", where X is generally the person whose song the act has just performed, unless said person is a black woman, in which case they well be described as "A young Diana Ross", no matter what their performance was like or, indeed, whether they bear any relation to Diana Ross, young or old, whatsoever? As it turns out, it's Sinitta, whose contribution to the world of music, GTO notwithstanding, is not exactly hugely impressive or indeed relevant. Which, frankly, pretty much makes her a perfect judge for the show.

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