The X Factor 2012 premiered on Wednesday night and am I the only one surprised Simon Cowell let new judge Britney Spears still the show?

Not only did they announce her last during the first day of auditions, she got her own little “Britney is a mean judge” montage! She totally showed Simon up. I’m sure Simon’s ego will get the best of him and he’ll steal the show back. Probably by Thursday night’s episode.

Just like last year (and just like American Idol), the show was over-produced and included lots of dramatic previews and teasers, Pepsi drinking, and a fair share of sob stories. Oh, how I wish there was a singing show that focused only on singing. I’m not hear to critique the production, necessarily, so let’s get on to the standout singers. These are the people we’ll likely be seeing a lot more of this season.

Standout Singers

Paige Thomas: She started the episode and the season off right. The young mother related to Britney Spears from the start because they were both young moms. And then when she started to sing she was in a different league than Britney. Because she’s a mush better singer than Britney. Her version of “I’m Going Down” was filled with soul and passion. Her vibrato was a little much, but other than that, she’s great.

Reed Demming: The 13-year-old Justin Bieber lookalike (actually I didn’t thin he looked like Beebs, but everyone else did) was a bundle of nerves at first. After Simon stopped him and asked him to pick a different song, he did a much better job. He wasn’t exactly my favorite of the night. He actually left me wanting to gasp for air. But the judges loved him and he got four yeses.

Kaci Newton: First of all, they kept featuring her in little “mean girls” type segments where she was sizing up the competition and putting others down. Then when she took the stage, we were expecting her to do well, but she totally flopped. And the judges let her have it too. It was pretty fantastic.

Emblem 3: The first group act featured of the season and they were outstanding. I’m sure we were all afraid they’d be a tacky boy band but they were far from that. They took the risk of performing an original number and it paid off. They had the look, the sound and almost had the moves. But who cares if they moved well or not. They were great. They got four yeses and deservingly so.

Don Phillip: Britney got a blast from the past when Don showed up. He’s been trying to break into the business for a long time and even did a duet with Britney about ten years ago. He seemed to think the X Factor was his last shot at getting into the business and I thought he was going to be fantastic. But he was so emotional and spastic that it all came off very sad. I feel for the guy and I must confess that I’m still a little confused about what I just watched with his audition. Great looking guy and a lot of passion, but something didn’t work out with this.

Jennel Garcia: I was a little nervous when she took the stage. I thought we were in for a gag audition, but then she started singing and it was amazing! She has this little feisty rocker edge. She seems a bit too young for such sexy moves, but I think I’m growing more old-fashioned every year. I thought she was fantastic. Hope she goes all the way.

Jillian Jensen: Again, another surprise! I thought this was going to be a Demi Lovato stalker but no, Demi has just inspired her as a person who has also been bullied. Jillian’s story was touching enough, but her performance brought the house down. She has an amazing rasp and sings with such emotion that I’m not sure anyone could listen to her and not feel at least a little touched. Loved her a lot.

So there were a lot of great singers already on the first night. If this is any indication of what’s in store, we’re going to have a great season of The X Factor. What did you think? Are you loving Britney and Demi?


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