The X Factor Series Premiere Recap (Who Stood Out?)
It’s kinda sad that The X Factor hadn’t even premiered yet and I was already suffering from “X Factor fatigue”. Let’s just say I was much more excited about this show last spring than I was minutes before the premiere. But…I watched it…and I liked it. I’ve never seen the UK version so I have nothing to compare this too. I guess I could compare this with American Idol. Actually, I think it’s too early.
In terms of the format and judges, I thought this was interesting. It was pretty much very similar to America’s Got Talent, right down to the opening theme music. I kept forgetting that they didn’t have those giant red “X”s that are buzzed when the judges don’t like an act. (Actually, considering the name of the show and the logo…that would seem entirely appropriate.) I was also pleasantly surprised that they kept the “sob story” to a minimum. Yeah, there were a couple…but not as numerous or heartbreaking as American Idol’s.
The judges were fine. LA Reid didn’t have much of a unique personality, but I liked him. What I’m trying to say is…this is a boring black judge, yet he actually knows what the fuck he’s talking about…for now. Paula Abdul was her Paula Abdul self. Simon Cowell was harsh as usual, but it seems like he’s enjoying himself more than he did on his last show. Cheryl Cole…oh geez. She kinda sucked. She had no chemistry with any of the judges. And…she does have enunciation issues. I’m not saying I’m completely lovin’ Nicole Scherzinger…but she’s a much better substitution.
As for the actual talent…I’m pretty disappointed. The problem is…they didn’t feature that many train wreck auditions. That guy with the penis that disgusted Paula Abdul…oh, there’s nothing more I wanted to add to that. I just wanted to point that out.
But, seriously, I didn’t mind the number of bad auditions, but the supposed “good” auditions didn’t blow me away. But I guess there were four singers that somehow stood out. Simone Battle and Marcus Canty are both decent, although not extraordinary young singers. Simone Battle is the one with the hot red spandex who sang “When I Grow Up”. I think she has potential and I pretty much agree with Simon Cowell more than LA Reid. Marcus Canty is the one who had the 2 year ultimatum set out by his mom. After high school, if he doesn’t make a career out of singing, he has go to college or get a job. At 20, this audition was pretty much his last chance. He sang Stevie Wonder’s “I Wish”. I’m not as convinced as the judges, but there’s a spark about him. He energized the crowd and I enjoyed watching him.
My other two stand outs were stronger. Most of us are already familiar with Stacy Francis, who was featured in the 8 minute promo for the show. She’s the 42 year old stay at home mom who had the boyfriend who put her down. She sang “Natural Woman”, inky tears and all. Yes…she was kinda screechy. Yes…she was kind of sharp. Yes…she was kinda pitchy, dawg. And yes…I’m not quite sure if she can be commercial and sell records. But she has undeniable, strong, passionate voice with a lot of range. I’m looking forward to what she does next.
And then there was the last singer featured: 28 year old Chris Rene. I’m not going to lie. Between his crooked teeth, his trash hauling job, his druggy past, and his tattoos…I knew he would make it through (why else would he be given the final slot?), but I didn’t think I’d like him. I did. He sang an original song called “Young Homie”…a song I’d totally buy for my iPod. He has nice, sweet, consistent voice. He could work on his falsetto, but I’ll just assume that was nerves. It was totally unexpected and quite beautiful. A singer/songwriter…that’s what this show needs.
But, overall, a lukewarm reception for me towards the talent. Hopefully it’ll get better though. I’m pretty much watching this entire season whether I like it or not. If I had to use my Haley Reinhart scoring system…I’d say the show was at a “Fallin’” (potential), not quite at “Bennie and the Jets”. Thanks for reading!