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Pop CultureApril 28, 2015

The X Factor NZ: Power Rankings, Week Seven – Let’s Just Get the Spice Girls to Decide the Winner


With his predictions going hugely awry for the last few weeks, Duncan Greive decided to take some time out from the noble task of power ranking. Spending the long weekend in Ohakune, he meditated next to the giant carrot – hoping to gain the strength to be able to see anything promising in the dark abyss that X Factor has become.

What he couldn’t have accounted for, deep meditative state aside, was that Ohakune doesn’t seem to receive TV3 very well, and only had channel FOUR available. Naturally, he chose to continue staring at the Ohakune carrot. And that is where he shall remain until further notice.

Which is where I come in, hello. I am guesting these power rankings, one day later than usual because Duncan’s morse code only just made it through. I too have been watching the X Factor, mouth agape week after week as the ocean of odd song choices, bizarre outfits and bad Dom Bowden jokes continue to swell up and slowly drown us all.

Obviously, we already know who went home this week. Goodbye Lili, the most popstar-looking contestant with the best offscreen love story by a longshot. Not even her musical hero Amy Winehouse, or gang of ‘sexy prisoner’ friends could save her:


The rest of the contestants paired up with their mostly-dead musical heroes, and a large troupe of Key-bait ponytailed dancers for Sunday night’s live show. I will attempt to break down their performances with my limited X Factor skillset, and rank their place in the competition by drawing their names out of this highly collectable Spice Girls Chupa Chups tin.

It’s about as trustworthy a system as anything else at this point.


1. (LW: 4)


The tin hath called it. At this point, it’s not even a crazy guess. I wouldn’t blink if the Vibes took this out, and have a sneaky suspicion it would help the franchise immensely as a whole to have the first ever band season won by an actual band. That’s business synergy for sure. Sometimes I think I really like the Vibes, other times I don’t even know what I like anymore.

All I know is that Sunday night was a massive bloody racket. Loud horns, loud dressing gowns, loud Vibes. “It was loud” said Stan, constructively. They did Stevie Wonder’s ‘Higher Ground’ in spin cycle mode, helped by the dancers who had obviously been let out of Lili’s jail to community spin service on good behaviour.


Shelton told them in the intro vid to “keep it tight” and also “don’t sleep”, which explains why they rocked up in their jim jams. Aside from Mikey, who was clearly trying to flaunt his taut vibey buns in case Demi Lovato was watching.

How could you do this to me Mikey, how could you forget all our precious memories and one photo spent together…

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2. (LW: 1) 


There is no doubt that Stevie will go to top three status, what with the vein and the beard and the eyes etc. On Sunday night he tackled Michael Jackson’s ‘Billie Jean’ and, as Shelton noted, his most Amish hat yet. “He’s the King of Pop, everything he does has purpose” Tonks said manically, slipping into a replica oxygen tent for the full MJ simulation.

I didn’t like his performance very much. I completely agree with Mel that it was like a piece of terrible musical theatre, thank G.O.D. someone finally spoke up. It’s like the rest of the world is caught up in a Tonks trance, fueled by his endless fancy feet and huge toothy smiles (:D)


Tonks’ showy side could just be his downfall, there were way too many crotchgrabs on a Sunday night for my taste (one). Shelton applauded his control “even with so many girls all over him.” Sick Shelton!

3. (LW: 7) 


The magic tin reckons Steve Broad will come third, which seems eerily prophetic considering his NZ Idol status. This week he went to St Mary’s to sing the hits of Grease to some teenage girls, which felt exactly like the time a 40-year-old graduate from MAINZ came to my high school to sing ‘I Like the Way You Move’ by the Bodyrockers to us one lunchtime. PS: I went to a much lower decile school than St Mary’s.

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Steve’s rendition of Usher’s ‘Climax’ was indeed the climax of the show. Very good literal song placement by producers there. In keeping with the sexy climax theme, Steve dressed up as a ginormous heavenly sperm.

heavenly sperm

It was an ambitious performance that he definitely didn’t nail. It can get a little tense watching a human-sized sperm trying to sing endless falsetto. As Stan said, “as a punter, I don’t want to be worried about anything”. He didn’t quite pull it off, but that certainly didn’t stop him from making this good kiss face.


4. (LW: 3) 


The tin has placed Nyssa fourth in the competition, which could well happen if we go by anything that has happened in the past weeks. She’s a consistent powerhouse and, rankings aside, I feel like she could win solely by continuing her signature move of dropping “South Auckland” randomly into songs.

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Nyssa’s rendition of Alicia Keys’ ‘Empire State of Mind’ was boringly perfect for her. Performing in front of her own HUGE name, my mind drifted slightly as I realised a deeper conspiracy:


It’s a reach, but a spooky reach. Nyssa rounded off festivities by doing ‘The Slug’ dance move (was it actually called this? At first i heard something much more rude). She’s sweet and clearly a good singer, but my enthusiasm is slowing to slug’s pace.

5. (LW: 6)


Sorry about my racist Spice Girls tin btw. The prophecy tin is not keen on Beau at all, despite his cane-swirling dubstep version of Frank Lymon’s ‘Goody Goody’ on Sunday. Poor poor Beau. It’s such a damn shame that Natalie has made easily the coolest guy in the competition so chronically, cripplingly uncool. From the bumble bee sweaters to this waistcoat mess, I really think Izzy from Neighbours could be his downfall.

Oh well, at least Father Time is still supporting his busking.



I actually secretly loved this performance on Sunday. Until that godawful huge dubstep drop came along and we all remembered that this is the person mentoring him:


X Factor has taken a unique street performer, put him in some of Daniel Bedingfield’s patterned trousers and forced him to put up with Dominic Bowden saying “playa” to him a lot. Take that cane and get out while you can Beau.


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