The X Factor recap
THIRD D3GREE couldn’t manage to steal a place in the final.
While many a champion has demonstrated that success in reality television does not translate to music sales, The X Factor proved something different on Monday night: music sales don’t translate to success on The X Factor.
If you want further proof of the idiosyncratic nature of reality television voting – and possibly more evidence for your dinner party rants that talent shows aren’t about talent – on Monday night, Taylor Henderson was almost eliminated from the X Factor based on a performance that topped the iTunes charts the night before.
It’s devastating but yet I’m really excited because these guys were put together for a reason and they’ve got some banging stuff coming out. I know it in my soul, I can just feel it, so if you all put that energy out there it’s going to happen. So look out because THIRD D3GREE are coming your way.
As Australia chose to throw its support behind Jai Waetford to save him from his own slip up on Sunday night, Dami Im continued to ride the wave of favouritism. As such, by default, the bottom two were Taylor and THIRD D3GREE and the latter’s experience in Save Me songs almost got them across the line.
Number one and yet also number three … Taylor Henderson on The X Factor
With Foo choosing to take the vote to deadlock based on his “ridiculous” (see: blatant cross-promotion) gut instinct, which seemed to actually be drawing him towards saving THIRD D3GREE, but instead sending it to deadlock by voting for Taylor, it was once more down to Australia, who proved that the best single in the country right now was worthy of the third best performer on The X Factor.
By extension, Tina Arena would have been eliminated.
So how did it all go down?
Putting it out there … Natalie Bassingthwaighte has the shiny secret.
“All is about to happen.”
So promises Luke Jacobz who is trying to make Jai feel better tonight by stumbling a fair bit over his opening dialogue.
Rather than an ensemble song tonight we get Imagine Dragons, which is preferable in all sorts of ways really: no eisteddfod-like school-bonanza, no time-wasting pointless song, no need for recapping the professional band whose whistle-filled ditty is both well known and well performed.
Chasing the Dragons is a montage of last night’s songs, which focuses on each of the glitches in the first songs and the “triumphs” in the second.
It also includes Dannii accusing the other judges of using tactics in their comments about Dami, but she refrains from standing by that accusation when Luke offers her the chance to say that to their faces. Ronan then discusses the tears from Jai, before celebrating the fact that Taylor is at number one on iTunes. Luke asks Nat if she’s confident that THIRD D3GREE are now guaranteed a spot in the grand final, which she suggests is not the case. Then when Foo is put on the spot about who is going home tonight he says THIRD D3GREE which seems to come as a surprise to … no one.
An eternity later that includes a special extra moment with the contestants back stage playing a game that gives justification for calling this special, Tina Arena is on stage to show us just what France loves in a musician.
The post song interview is a crazy off as Luke Jacobz decides to point out that Tina Arena is on the X Factor which is on Seven, notes that she’s number two on iTunes (which sounds like she’s behind Taylor, which is slightly awkward). Then Tina tells us about how this tour has reintroduced her to her limbs (perhaps they don’t let her take them into France) and finally we witness a reunion between Dannii and Tina which is somewhat surprising as Tina’s been mentoring Dannii’s contestant “all week” so you’d have thought they might have caught up. Je ne sais pas what this is about, but its more interesting than the extended ad for Dancing With The Stars which is then passed off as content before an ad break.
Finally we find out who is safe. Luke explains the concept of what being in the grand final means for a small eternity, then finally announces the first contestant through:
Dami does possibly the cutest dance in response to the news, which rather undercuts Luke’s next question as to how Dami feels.
Luke asks for silence.
Luke pauses to contemplate the deeper meaning of life.
Luke announces the second contestant through to the grand final:
There is complete shock in the room – happy shock – and Luke bravely asks Jai for the first word that comes to mind. A fourteen year old, in shock, on live national television.
Thankfully Jai isn’t the standard fourteen year old and says “Shocked” before thanking everyone. Ronan adds that “nobody deserves it more than this guy.”
So that means it is Taylor Henderson versus THIRD D3GREE in the Save Me songs.
(Which really means it’s Taylor through to the final, surely).
Luke asks Nat if she’s ready. She is (and also petrified … and manic). He then thinks to ask the group and it turns out they are too, which is lucky really. Jordan seems to have been entirely expecting to be singing off tonight.
Luke asks Taylor and he is gracious in saying that Jai deserves to be in the final. Taylor looks a lot more nervous.
Luke asks him why he chose this song :”This song, this is the first … I remember singing this to my Dad, at a gig once. I think it was our favourite at the end of the night.” Which its fair to say is garbled grammar born of nerves. The song is Stand By Me.
Jordan as spokeperson for THIRD D3GREE announces Crazy In Love by “Beyoncaaaaaaaaaay” is the song their going with because it’s … well upbeat and has enough parts.
After the ad break Luke stumbles over the introduction for Little Mix singing move aside, who the voice of X Factor tells us have “exploded all over the world since winning X Factor.” How terribly chemically unstable of them.
Taylor Henderson – Stand By Me, Ben E. King
Ronan is bemused that Taylor can be number one on iTunes and in the bottom two (which is reasonable … unless you believe in conspiracies, in which case it’s to get Taylor to provide another top selling hit) but promises “he can handle it.”
Taylor comes out and the nerves from before are long gone. He is strolling around the stage, holding hands with fans and really working the song.
He’s got the crowd on their feet and clapping along.
If anything the song, or this version, doesn’t have a lot of variation in it, so there’s not a lot to show off with, but what is there he is all over.
Rating: 8/10 – More song would have given him more chance to shine
THIRD D3GREE – Crazy In Love, Beyonce
“Without a doubt THIRD D3GREE deserve a spot in the grand final because they are different, they are quirky” says Nat and wouldn’t it be nice if talent was a factor?
The number begins and the trio emerge from the back of the stage oozing ‘tude. They have worked on this song a lot clearly as the harmonies are solid.
It goes to the next level when Kelebek takes over with the rap, then the three split to work the crowd.
This is actually fantastic. Jacinta nails the big note and this was a great, if not their best song, from start to finish.
Rating: 9/10 – They have been saved with poor songs twice recently, time to go out with a bang
In terms of the judges, Foo stood for both performances, as did the respective mentors. Dannii must be getting over the shock of running into Tina Arena so unexpectedly.
After the ad break the heartbeat sound effect begins and Luke explains how The X Factor works for those tuning in for the first time.
Then he asks the judges for their thoughts.
RONAN: Loves THIRD D3GREE’s spirit and feels very proud that the group they put together have come so far. He admits Taylor and he are often at logger-heads but “sometimes it takes that to find greatness and Taylor you are the definition of a true artist.” Ronan is pitching Taylor to anyone who is listening right now and insists he had a career in the music industry regardless of what happens. He votes (unsurprisingly) to send to the final: TAYLOR HENDERSON
NAT: Has loved watching Taylor grow, especially without his guitar. She is also impressed that he can stand up without a guitar, possibly misinterpreting the use of the term crutch. She loves his voice and “could hear it over and over again.” Nat then identifies Jacinta, Jordan and Kelebek for those who didn’t know THIRD D3GREE have individual names and then bursts into tears because “I really want the country to hear your song, to hear your winning single, because it’s awesome.” Perhaps they could compromise and Taylor could offer to sing it? Nat votes (also unsurprisingly) to send to the final: THIRD D3GREE
DANNII: Recalls that both of these acts have had problems. That Jacinta and she were close to fighting during boot camp and that the group were fighting as well. She points out that last week Ronan and Taylor were completely divided yet the result was a number one single. Dannii then suggests this is all evidence that “we were right”. Without further ado, but with further pause, Dannii votes to send to the final: THIRD D3GREE
Ronan hangs his head. Nat looks stunned. Clearly everyone thought Taylor was a lock. As Luke points out “it’s all in your hands Foo. Who would you like to see in next week’s grand final?”
FOO: “Both acts are champions, are fighters.” He describes the two songs as amazing and some of the best in the series. He recalls Taylor’s slow start in the competition due to a lack of confidence. He charts his success to the point of Taylor holding the hand of a girl in the front row during Stand By Me. He describes THIRD D3GREE as a natural high. “You got so much energy and you’re able to package it up and entertain the world.” Taylor is close to tears as Foo says “you guys are entertainers.” Foo isn’t finished as he admits “there are some things that both of you have that I love and some things that amaze me.” Luke presses him and Foo votes to send to the final: “I got to go with my guy, my crazy gut, ridiculous, it’s a feeling” … no really, the act he chooses to put through is: TAYLOR HENDERSON
“Come on Australia!” shouts Ronan as it goes to Deadlock. The four shake their heads with a “no, it’s you” exchange before Taylor joins the group to hug as one group of four.
AUSTRALIA VOTES TO SEND TO THE GRAND FINAL: TAYLOR HENDERSON
Ronan goes to run on to the stage, but pauses to console Nat, while the trio hug Taylor.
We hear Luke saying he is “devastated” for THIRD D3GREE, but we see the moment Ronan gets on stage and clearly he and Taylor are ecstatic as they veritably dance together with joy.
Jordan is struggling for words, but his first thought is to sincerely congratulate Taylor “we are so happy for you man, so proud of you brother” before being overcome by emotion. Jacinta takes over the microphone to thank all the right people then holds it for Nat who is clearly devastated.
Nat takes a moment to demonstrate her time spent watching The Secret:
“It’s devastating but yet I’m really excited because these guys were put together for a reason and they’ve got some banging stuff coming out. I know it in my soul, I can just feel it, so if you all put that energy out there it’s going to happen. So look out because THIRD D3GREE are coming your way.”
And it’s immediately proven true, as Luke tells us that THIRD D3GREE will be on Sunrise tomorrow.
Proving once more, there is a worse fate than elimination.