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X Factor NZ: Group Think, Week Eight

The Spinoff knights meet at the television roundtable to discuss week eight on X Factor NZ: One Hit Wonder edition.//

Robyn Gallagher on Pleasing the Older Woman

In week two, the show theme was “Biggest Records Right Now” and Twitter was filled with 30-somethings having existential crises because they didn’t recognise any of the music. It’s been easier since, with old hits thrown in amongst the Lana Del Rey. But this week, a very specific limit was reached. Steve performed ‘Stay’, the 1992 Shakespear’s Sister song, and it provoked a bewildered, almost angry reaction from Shelton and Stan. They were highly bothered because they’d never heard of it, acting as if Steve had played some obscure ye olde minstrel ballade from the olden tymes of yore.

stan-walker

Well yeah, they were little boys when Siobhan and Marcella released their camp gothic masterwork, probably more interested in the Wiggles than edgy pop. But instead of admitting the limits of their musical knowledge, Stan and Shelton went on the attack, accusing Steve of only appealing to older women, as if that was a bad thing. Go on, ask Hayley Westenra and SOL3 MIO how awful it is to appeal to the mum demographic.

I feel like there’s some sort of unspoken power play going on here, and therefore Steve is going to stubbornly stick with his indie-mum-pleasing tunes just to further annoy the panel bros. In a series that’s unexpectedly becoming the most boring show on New Zealand television, Steve’s piano man retro injections of joy and drama are most welcome.

Josh Davis on the Bad Factor

There is something we don’t talk about when we talk about X Factor – it’s a bad garbage television show. Sure, in the tweets we make jokes and we meme, but there is an emptiness and a sadness behind our excellent jokes and memes. We are merely attempting to cope with… whatever this is that we’re all going through.

At the start it was all fun and games. We had bad singers, rappers and library friends to mock and deride. Most importantly, we had Natalia and Willy who were entertaining and weird. Now we have Shelton and everything is awful. Shelton is a goddamn dingus. Shelton’s critiques make about as much sense a human adult actively choosing to sit down and watch this fucking show every week. He compares every female performer to the first female pop star that happens to be on his brain and asks the same vague question about their “crossover appeal” (as in: does Shelton think they’re physically attractive enough). Also, despite not having researched this at all, I feel confident in saying that Shelton has definitely described a 9/11 truther documentary as “buzzy.”

The performances are also very mediocre but hey, at least there are only ten more weeks of this garbage show oh my god I’m not going to make it.

Jack Riddell on a Professional’s Opinion

And I said, hey hey hey hey hey, hey hey hey, I said hey, what’s going on?

I am blessed enough to have a wickedly talented girlfriend who moonlights as a opera singer and director. Each episode, I am lucky enough to sit through her commentary, critiquing both judges and contestants with animated vehemence. Here is her rundown of the remaining contestants.

Stevie Tonks
Vocals were off the hook sick – that falsetto kills regardless of the musical theatre ham. I half expect him to launch into something from Fiddler on The Roof.

Nyssa Collins
FLAWLESS, despite the fact that song is unbearable. In an ideal world Stan would give her some Erykah Badu.

Brendan Thomas & The Vibes
FFS Shelton, do something right and give them some Black Sabbath.

Beau Monga
His cool factor is being whittled away by a mentor who helped produce the weirdest and whitest hip-hop performance ever seen from a brown boy.

Lili Bayliss
Pretty overrated. Her voice isn’t great, but she does have the ability to cover it with decent delivery and inspired song choice.

Mae Valley
Hamilton’s Dixie Chicks, but with half the sass and vocal ability. All the yawns.

Joe Irvine
Should’ve gone home. Vocals are consistently weak and the performances even worse. I usually watch from behind my hand.

Steve Broad
Middle-aged woman’s wet dream. Sing some Michael Buble or GTFO.

Finlay Robertson
Pretty powerful voice, however often pitchy and has a tendency to over-sing. The vulnerability is endearing even with the not-so-sexy-lace-Easter-Bunny-head-piece.

Renee Church on the X Factor Jester
We, as a nation, are blessed. Blessed to be a part of a generation which has the opportunity to witness Dominic Bowden dish out the WORST jokes that this country has ever seen. But it’s not a bad thing. Through the weeks – that felt like years – where Steve Broad would deliver watered-down versions of once-thriving pop songs, it was Dom who brought lines like “even a bit of Bill Medley and Jennifer Warns. Who are they? Exactly!” when introducing One Hit Wonders week. Classic.

My personal fave from this week though, was when Natalie tried to do some ol’ impromptu singing on the judges panel (displayed by fired X Factor NZ judges gone by) and Dom held NOTHING BACK.

Peter andre

But I think the best zing of the night was when our sleeveless Shelton accused Steve Broad of appealing to the older lady. Dom saw an opportunity and delivered one of the best lines ever; “Whooaah catering to the older woman, huh playa?

BOOM. DONE. Shut it down. Dom, you’ve laid the foundation for a fantastic inappropriate narrative. You work is always loved.

Alex Casey on Tonks’ Rorschach

I looked closer at Tonks’ maniac smears during ‘Crazy’ and found some deep shit lurking beneath the hat and the beard.

Here is a clearly a cat eating a hot dog:

hotdog

Here is clearly a Freddo frog (subliminal sponsorship)

tonks2

And here is a whole bunch of dicks:

tonk

Angella Dravid on the Bad Factor II

This week was a voyeuristic treat. The ill-conceived song and stage choices, shocking bottom two determined by public vote – it’s indicative of an disengaged audience. The judges seem desperate to capture an audience and entice discussion.

From a mere glance, it would appear that the judges are unsure what the X Factor is. The show ought to be renamed ‘the blind leading the blind’.

 

 

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