The auditions continue tonight with another 2-hour episode of The X Factor season 2. Last week, Simon, LA, Demi and Britney began their travels across the states for a brand new batch of talent.
Many memorable and interesting characters were met. This raises the question, is it true that shows such as this send all sorts of bad talent to the main stage for the sake of network rankings? Or is this where The X Factor sets itself apart from the others, giving EVERYONE a chance? Whether predetermined or not, we’re going to have fun picking apart these performances!
A fresh start in Kansas City, Missouri kicks the week off.
In Britney’s hotel room, she informs LA and Demi that Simon isn’t feeling well and some guy named Louie will be filling in. Once LA leaves, Demi reveals that it’s the label legend’s birthday. So appropriately, they will be singing to him.
When the word gets around to those auditioning, the celebration breaks out. Everyone couldn’t be happier that Simon is out and Louie Walsh, the manager of UK super boy bands Boyzone and Westlife has taken his place.
The mean girls have come out to play again and this time she has leopard print on her forehead. “That is not a threat at all,” she says to her friends after introducing herself to a young rapper. We shall see.
Rizzloe Jones, Freestyle Rap
With a name like Rizzloe, he has to be good, right? This kid asks the judges to give him a subject to incorporate into an impromptu rap that he makes up on the spot. Not only does he take the given topic, The X Factor, and use it, he uses LA, Demi and Britney as well.
“I felt like you were a young Vanilla Ice, Ice, Baby,” nods Britney. I’m not sure if this is really a compliment, but she does like the 18-year-old. All four of the judges do. As soon as he gets a spot in the next round, a herd of his buddies swarm the stage. Leopard Face looks on a bit fearful.
Cece Frey, ‘Unchained Melody’ by The Righteous Brothers
After badgering everyone in her path, we find out that the leopard print on her face is paint. Thank, goodness. She really believes that she’s doing so well, but it sounds not so great. Demi stops the music because she was confused by her rocker look and bad song choice. Maybe a new tune will help?
‘Ain’t No Other Man’ by Christina Aguilera
Okay, she does not have the best voice, but her performance quality is attractive. I believe Britney sees herself in young Cece. Yes, I went there! She’s playing to the crowd, whipping her hair back and forth, winking, all of it. The girl knows how to put on a show.
“… I think you have the X factor, sweetheart,” says LA. Cece better thank her lucky stars because not only is she going through to the next stage of the competition, but Demi has a girl crush on her. I was not expecting this girl to be good in any way, whatsoever.
LA’s Birthday Celebration
Britney and her manager-fiance walk up to LA backstage holding a store-bought cake with candles as she sings “Happy Birthday.” It’s a very nice gesture, but they couldn’t do any better than that?
Vino Alan, ‘Trouble’ by Ray Lamontagne
Vino may have his entire bald head tattooed, turning Britney far off from his look, but his voice is gritty and powerful. He doesn’t have much of a performance; it’s more about the audience being drawn into him and his voice. Even his story of how he wants to prove to his 15-year-old son that he can do this is worth the attention. Vino is talented.
It’s an easy “yes” from all of the judges. “I’ll make you proud,” Vino assures the panel as he points to each of them. We’ll be seeing him around.
Are the judges missing Simon? “Not that much,” says LA. Honestly, I agree. There is enough going on, like this next artist, or lack thereof.
Deangelo, ‘With You’ by Chris Brown
Not only is the very first note off key, Deangelo faces the right side of the stadium. He’s so bad that all of the judges leave. They walk out and Deangelo is left on stage, singing to a crowd who does not care for him. With a wave, he walks off and addresses the cameras.
“If you ask me, I think they all are devil-worshipers,” says Deangelo. Along with accusing the judges of satanic pastimes, he deliberately runs out with the studio’s microphone. The cops are called and he is handcuffed while singing. I’m ashamed for even having to describe this to you all.
Tate Stevens, ‘Anything Goes’ by Randy Hauser
Definitely a country boy, Tate is a jokester, quickly grabbing the judges’ attention. Then he opens his mouth to sing and a deep-rooted, soulful voice just eases right out. His wife and daughter are backstage in tears as the entire stadium is electrified.
“You’re my favorite so far,” says Britney. “And I love you!” And with that, another artist is given four yeses in Kansas, City.
Kansas City is a wrap and so is Louie who agrees to return the next time someone is sick.
The man is back in San Fransisco, CA.
The boys of the boy band Citizen are pretty and that’s putting it simply. They spend quite the amount of time in the restroom, perfecting their looks. Let’s see what they can do.
Citizen, ‘Don’t Let Go’ by EnVogue
The fact that they’re pretty is definitely working better for them than their voices are. These guys need some vocal work. LA is dancing, like always, and better than those on stage even. Demi and Britney are all smiles. I’m not sold.
“I didn’t get it,” says Simon. He is the only one who gives the boys a “no.” Although his vote is overridden, Simon manages to toss out one more diss to Citizen before they skip off back to the mirrors.
Adrianna Lemus, ‘Rumors’ by Adele
Adrianna walks out confident, singing Adele. As we know, not everyone can do this and Simon reminds us of this. All four judges say “no.” Could this be a warning sign for the next youngster to come?
Diamond White, ‘It’s a Man’s World’ by James Brown
Simon told her, “Please don’t sing Adele.” So she isn’t. She is killing these vocals and her stage presence is very comfortable. Her excitement may be the best part about her, though. It’s infectious.
“Your mother got it right. You are a diamond,” comments LA. The other judges agree. Diamond lights up on stage and one of them just might have the chance to work with her on the show.
Back in Austin, TX
Ally Brooke, ‘On My Knees’ by Jackie Velasquez
I’ll admit that I was expecting some pop performance filled with a dance routine and mediocre vocal talent, but Ally has surprised me. Everyone is pleasantly surprised by her tone and control. Yet when the music cuts out, Ally keeps singing a capella.
Britney believes that Ally is good enough for Broadway, but this 18-year-old will be singing her way through the competition.
The oh-so-expected montage shows a few more acts who hear the cherished words. Brandon Hassan, Normani and Sister C walk away with smiles. Yet Jeremiah and Josh receive a little more. “I want you to wake me up in the morning,” chimes Britney. When she says this, of course she means that they remind her of an alarm clock. Get your minds out of the gutter, people!
Panda Ross, ‘Bring It All Home’ by Sam Cooke
“Hey Simon, I’m your baby’s mama,” are her first words. Her name is not the only thing worth remembering. Panda’s voice is full of soul, power, character and so much more. The audience is on their feet from the beginning.
“You sound like a legend,” has to be the best phrase ever to come out of Simon’s mouth. All the excitement from passing this stage of the competition comes to a head as Demi meets Panda backstage and hugs her.
“I can’t breathe,” Panda repeats over and over as she begins to feel ill. Just the day before, she was in the hospital for pneumonia and it looks as if the symptoms have only let up to allow her a superb audition. An ambulance arrives on the scene to pack her up and administer a breathing treatment. Let’s hope we’ll see Panda again in boot camp.
Simon is worried that Demi’s touching Panda has infected her with pneumonia. They laugh it all off, yet when Demi touches him, Simon is quick to open up a bottle of hand sanitizer. Funny how they have so much fun and there are thousands of people working through a wreck of nerves left and right.
Jessica Espinoza, ‘Nobody Knows’ by Pink
Jessica is one of those very people working through the nerves when her music starts, but, boy, does she deliver. The shakiness of her voice gave it more character, I think. You could really feel her passion. Plus, she sounds GOOD!
“You’re not ordinary, you’re very special,” says LA. He’s right and the other three agree. Simon adds that Jessica is his favorite today, by far. We’ll be seeing her in boot camp, too!
Another day of auditions are done. Who have been your favorites? Who do you believe should have just stayed home? I’ll stand out on a limb and say that Panda was my favorite of the night. I really do hope we get to see her again. Let me know what you think below!
Tomorrow on The X Factor, has Britney found a long lost relative? Tune in to FOX in order to see more auditions, more drama and a blackout!
(Image courtesy of FOX)