So that's another year's X Factor over with, almost. And I've watched roughly an hour and a half of this whole series. I've done my best to keep up with the buzz on Twitter but I really couldn't be arsed to give up my entire weekend for a show I cannot help but think is deeply flawed.
So, as I've probably done before but am too lazy to check on, I shall tell you how I would do The X Factor if I was in charge.
First off, I'd scrap the Theme Of The Week. There's no use giving an awesome RnB singer Dancing Queen to sing on ABBA week. They'd be voted out because that's not their thang! So many great, talented acts have been lost mid-series thanks to their inability to adapt to some Theme that really isn't their thing. All this bollocks about "going out of your comfort zone" is bullshit. Eminem wouldn't throw a Beatles cover on his album, but he's a marvellous rapper! Nobody wants to make (or buy) an album consisting of two ABBA covers, a Christmas song, something to do with love, something that's thought of as a "guilty pleasure" (don't even get me fucking started on that term!) and a frigging unknown 80's power ballad that was No1 in Azerbaijan for a week.
Next, reduce the number of contestants, the number of weeks the show runs for and the number of auditions shown. Sure, it's great to see the funny auditions, but they could throw a couple of episodes on ITV2 showing nothing but shit acts. A week of decent auditions, a week of Boot Camp, the Judges Houses selection weekend and then on to the live shows where ten acts, not bloody twenty and a "wild card" or whatever, sing one song each for the first three weeks (with an elimination each week) and then two each until the final week where the top three acts sing three songs (of their choice and their style) until a winner is crowned. The Mentor system remains, but there are no categories; simply a few acts each, randomly assigned.
Then, instead of giving the winner a shitty cover or an "uplifting ballad that retells their X Factor journey" have them spend a while in the studio, with a few writers and musicians, where they'll come up with a single that matches their talents and style. The songs they've chosen to sing all series (covers) will still be available to download from iTunes or wherever. No need to rush out a shit song; spend some time on a decent single that the winning artist can proudly put on their album.
And then the name "The X Factor" will seem less pretentious and less contradictory, frankly. I don't think that ANY of the X Factor winners have what I think The X Factor means. They're all carbon copies of Robbie, Will Young, Beyonce, Whitney, Britney and bloody McFly or [insert teeny boyband here].
See? Telly magic.