The X Factor: Semi-Final 2010 Review

Posted by Judy Johnson On Sunday, 5 December 2010 00:46 0 comments
They have rather cleverly got it down to the best of a bad bunch now that Katie and Wagner have left (though Aiden or Paije should be in here instead of Mary, tsk), and now that it's crunch time all the excuses are coming out. The mentor wasn't there, a bandmate was missing, someone has had the flu, etc etc. It's a little sad that we still need sympathy votes this far down the line, no? The judges are now also being more catty (except Louis, who lives in a dreamworld where everything is pink and shiny and perfect), and accusing each other of 'tactical' voting. I think they'll find this is called an OPINION.

Before we start, I had a little trouble working out the theme. After checking the website, I found it was 'Clubland Classics and Get Me to the Final' songs. I have no words. 

It started so well. Well, ish. Singing Show Me Love, I actually thought Rebecca sounded good on this and could do well in this genre - the only problem being she still changes the notes of songs as and when she pleases. I liked the staging of it but she still didn't move - the most exciting part was when she put her hand on her hip at the end. Groundbreaking stuff. 
Then it went wrong again. When they said it was going to be a big song, I thought I Will Always Love You? Hope not. Titanic? Hope not even more. Instead, she decided to ruin Amazing Grace. The only amazing thing about this performance was the level of annoyance that her singing of the wrong notes brought out in me. I have heard this song done so well by so many people, and love it. Thankfully this won't be my lasting memory of the song as it sounded nothing like it. Also, bringing out the choir? How very Joe McElderry. 

Yes, no, yes, no... I just cannot decide whether to like or loathe this girl. I am sure her eyebrows have been drawn differently this week, which was quite distracting - but she did look a little more natural and down to earth too, so I am fairly sure they are all reading my blog over there and taking note. Yes. Anyhoo, she started off with Nothin' On You - not sure that this is a club classic, but it did suit her and show her voice off pretty well. I'm not buying her 'the arrogant thing is part of my act' though.
Singing Love the Way You Lie to get through to the final, she may have a chance as it wasn't terrible. However, she really needs to learn how to transition between rapping and singing - it is so abrupt it emphasises that the song is meant for a duet. More importantly though - she backtalked to Dannii. This, my dear little teenager, is so not cool.

I think it's safe to say Mary is out this week. She is way out of her depth being in the semi final, bless her, and the disco theme is bad news because it has given her even more excuse to be a shouty pub singer. They are also still failing to style her hair in any way that is flattering to her face. She starts with Never Can Say Goodbye, which is basically a cruise-ship shout-athon that hurts my ears. Then Louis started talking about flu for no apparent reason and he and Simon started bickering. Honestly, it's like they want to give us a headache. 
Mary bounces back for song two with The Way We Were. Ok, 'bounce' is not the word. This would have anybody sobbing, partly because it sounds a bit dodgy on some notes and also because it's not nice to see Mary cry. She's a nice old lady. Still, they could do without constantly pointing out that she's a checkout girl, and also listening to what she said about the tears before wading in with their 'stop being sad and start being grateful and happy' speak. One week it's all 'you put the emotion into it and it was amazing', next it's 'dry your eyes mate'. 

One Direction
They've done a little hand-made card for Simon and his manflu. Seriously. Do we need reminding that they are twelve? It's like being back in the days of Live and Kicking where they had the photo gallery of stuff babies had drawn. The tweenies are back in my bad books this week because they sang Rhianna's new song, Only Girl in the World and sang it with no oomph whatsoever. Cheryl was right for once when she said it didn't work - it was soooo karaoke, they'd be better off going down to Lucky Voice and singing it there.(I love Lucky Voice by the way - this is not an insult). 
Secondly, they couldn't sound more pissed off that Zayn hasn't been there this week. Have a little heart guys. It's all hunky dory again when it's time to sing though - Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol. I could have cried. I love this song. They didn't do it too badly, but it was a total cheesefest, complete with painful key change, and didn't do the song justice as it made it sound all flat and boybandy. I think they should just go through the S Club back catologue and re-do those - then no one would mind too much and we could all bop along. 

Yes, I saved the best 'til last - even with a sore throat/tonsilitis/manflu Matt outsings his fellow contestants. He does look terrible though. He started off with You've Got the Love. I'm not sure anyone understood why there was a need for a guitar in this, but no one cares because we're all just glad he made it onto the stage without his mum popping on to wipe his nose. The vocal would have been better without the sickness but still, he nailed it, and should do this kind of track when he has his own album. Oh, and be quiet Simon, no one cares if you had a cold - you're a judge not a singer.
For his second song Matt did She's Always a Woman - it felt a little old fashioned (dammit, I agree with Simon) but he does suit these ballads and, though the staircase was unnecessary, the performance was faultless. Now go home Matt and have a Lemsip - we've got a final to prepare for.

Final? I don't even know how many go through but I think One Direction, Matt and Rebecca have the final three in the bag. I wonder if Rebecca will move her feet if she wins?

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