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September 22, 2011

X Factor premiere recap: It looks like Idol, but doesn’t sound like it

Of course people are going to compare Simon Cowell’s “X Factor” to “American Idol,” the show he used to call home. And rightly so. There are a lot of similarities.

First of all there’s Simon. Then there’s Paula Abdul. Then there’s Pepsi instead of Coke. There’s a lot of filler. And there’s even more over-produced footage, graphics montages, etc.  And of course there are the annoying staged joke auditions. It’s undeniably a lot like “Idol.” But there’s one major difference and that’s the sound. Immediately, talent seemed and sounded better. The fact that the age limit is broader and duets and groups can be a part of the show is what sets it off. And one-ups it, if you ask me.

Since it’s still in audition mode, there’s not a lot of performance to recap, so I’ll just talk about the standout auditions.

* Rachel Crow: Let the sob stories begin. There’s another “Idol” similarity. But who cares, this girl was sweet. And it was hard to believe she was only 14. Her version of Duffy’s “Mercy” was pretty impressive for such a young girl. We should see her again soon.

*John Lindahl: I thought this kid was kind of bland, but the girls in the audience seemed to love him. Sure he had charm, but the whole Justin Bieber vibe just does nothing for me. (This is where the show’s format could be its downfall. The talent is so broad, it might be hard to appeal to a broad audience for very long. I could imagine viewers bailing once their one-and-only favorite is canned.)

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September 21, 2011

X Factor USA Premiere Episode Tonight On FOX

Get ready! X Factor USA debuts tonight with its premiere episode at 8PM ET/PT on FOX for a full two hours.

Simon, Paula, LA, and Nicole and ready to bring you the best of the best this fall through three months of auditions, boot camps, mentoring, and live competition and eliminations. There’s a lot riding on this show, so let’s find out if it has its own X Factor or not.

Hopefully you’ve got lots of room on your DVR because there’s a full four hours of X Factor to watch between tonight and tomorrow night when we get another two hours from 8PM to 10PM ET/PT. Take a look at the X Factor schedule for the rest of the season so you’re ready and don’t miss an episode.

We’ll be recapping this season’s episodes each night for discussion the day after so join us on Facebook and Twitter to get those alerts. You’ll also be able to find spoilers posted live as the results are revealed later in the competition.

Are you ready for the return of Simon on X Factor USA?

September 21, 2011

Pepsi Sets High Expectations For X Factor

Simon might have previously preferred Coke in his days on Idol, but now he’s a Pepsi man since they’re the official soda sponsor of X Factor. So to get things started with high, very high, expectations Pepsi has released this promo featuring Michael Jackson, Ray Charles, Britney Spears, Kanye West, and Mariah Carey. The commercial closes with the question of who will be next. Presumably they mean we’re likely to find the next megastar from X Factor which makes sense because none of those singers were discovered through a singing competition. Oh wait, that doesn’t make any sense.

Source: AdAge

September 21, 2011

Simon Talks X Factor USA Premiere

Simon is making the rounds to promote the 2011 premiere of X Factor USA. Here he is on Piers Morgan’s show last night going through all the easy questions except, “how did you get to be so wonderful?” Excellent work, Piers.

Anyway, the first few segments are just Simon Cowell and then in the last few Nicole Scherzinger shows up and, well, I’m not sure the purpose of her visit, but there she is.

Watch the rest of the segment at MJs Big Blog.

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September 21, 2011

Cheryl Cole Vs. Nicole Scherzinger – X Factor Reviews

Not everyone had to wait until tonight to see the X Factor 2011 premiere in the USA and they’re letting us know what they thought of Simon’s decision to replace Cheryl Cole with Nicole Scherzinger as the fourth judge.

Cheryl was one of the very first rumored judges to be slated to join Simon as she was originally on the X Factor UK version with him. Then for whatever reason, lots of rumors exist, Cheryl Cole was cut after the first week and replaced with Scherzinger. Not a good decision, says NY Times, LA Times, and Chicago Tribune.

NY Times finds Nicole to be a “downgrade” from Cheryl and lacking in contributions:

In the premiere [Cole] just kind of disappears midshow, without much explanation, and suddenly Nicole Scherzinger of Pussycat Dolls is in her chair. It’s a downgrade. Ms. Cole showed glimmers of being interesting; in two seasons as a judge on “The Sing-Off” on NBC, Ms. Scherzinger was a pretty face but, judicially speaking, not much more than a seat warmer.”

LA Times preferred Cheryl to Nicole:

When the show opens, in L.A. for open auditions, the fourth judge is Girls Aloud star Cheryl Cole, but by the time they move to Seattle, Nicole Scherzinger of the Pussycat Dolls has taken her place. Cowell has said he replaced Cole because she seemed “bewildered,” but on a first impression, she is much more interesting than Scherzinger… in early scenes [Scherzinger] seems more interested in tearing up and out-glamming “Idol’s” Jennifer Lopez than bringing much to the commentary.

Chicago Tribune compares Nicole to Kara:

[Simon] told Piers Morgan that Cole had seemed “bewildered” in the role, although Scherzinger doesn’t come off as an obvious improvement in the early going. She’s more earnest like Kara DioGuardi than lovable like Jennifer Lopez.”

I had been pretty excited about Simon bringing over Cole as she earned lots of rave reviews in the UK. Now instead we’ll get someone who has only earned “meh” reviews in her previous role as a singing competition judge. No clue what Simon was thinking on that one. Maybe Nicole’s dozens of fans made a convincing argument.

Source: Cheryl Online


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