Welcome to semi-final week!
Format is the same as last time: only four acts left in the competition so they will each be performing twice.
I wonder if the X Factor narrator talks like that in real life ... "CAN I HAVE .... A CUP .... OF TEA?" Conversations would take forever.
While I've been imagining life with the slowest talker in the UK, someone has announced that this week the decisions are out of the judges' hands so get voting if you actually care who gets to the final.
Dermot's clearly been working hard on choreographing his now weekly dance routine. He still looks like a moron though so we'll move swiftly on.
Judges are introduced. Tulisa does the usual arm thing. Wouldn't it be marvellous if the three other judges took the piss and copied her? Yes, that would be hilarious. Old 'lego hands' Louis would probably mess it up though.
Theme = Motown
Misha (Dancing In The Street)
This week Misha has been a busy little bee meeting Justin Bieber and releasing a charity single.
She is wearing a dress made of records! Actual vinyl records! How ace! With her on stage are dancers a-plenty moving and a-grooving. It's a great start to the show and I kind of wish I was in the audience.
Louis thinks she's original and authentic. He wants her in the final. Tulisa says the theme suits her perfectly and the performance will get her to the final. Gary thanks Misha for making the whole X Factor experience a positive one. Kelly says people will not only be dancing in the street, but on the roof too. If it's alright with you, Rowland, I'll give the rooftop dancing a miss. It's rather cold outside and I don't think I have suitable footwear. Maybe next time though, eh?
Amelia (Aint No Mountain High Enough)
This week Amelia has shot a music video and sung on stage with JLS and One Direction. Yeah? Well, I went to Sainsbury's and wrote some Christmas cards.
Hopefully Motown will give Amelia slightly less opportunity to shout at me. Fingers crossed! Again, plenty of dancers on stage. She sounds really good but she loses points for wearing a dress made of fabric instead of household objects.
Louis loves Amelia and says she reminds him of Christina Aguilera. Didn't I say that a couple of weeks ago? See how knowledgeable I am. Gary was worried Amelia wouldn't cope with the theme but was pleasantly surprised. Kelly thinks Amelia is 'on fire' tonight.
[Dinner was served during Little Mix and Marcus' performances so we now skip ahead to everyone's second song. Lasagne, if you're wondering. It was yummy.]
Theme = Song contestant thinks will get him/her to the final
Misha (F*ing Perfect)
I really like this song and thankfully Misha's doing a pretty good job with it. Although, having said that, the chorus sounds a little whiney. She manages to win me over again with a rapping segment that, as the judges would probably say, 'makes the song her own'.
Louis says she stands out from the crowd and that she should never have been in the bottom two. Tulisa thinks the performance was 'personal and real'. Word. Gary tries to generate votes for Misha by saying that she was wrongfully accused earlier in the competition and that, even if she got to the final, she wouldn't win because of what has been said in the past. Well! What do you think of THAT, Tulisa? Feel bad about calling her a bully?
Amelia (I'm With You)
I'm worried. Kelly warns me that Amelia may well 'bring the house down' with this song ... *volume down*
As if she's singing Avril Lavigne! Oh my god, how 2003. It sounds rather lovely until we reach the big notes, when Amelia tries, but fails, not to shout. I did advise that someone 'accidentally' lose her microphone this week.
Louis thinks it was the vocal performance of the night. Apparently this song is one of Tulisa's all time favourites (who knew?). Gary disagrees with Louis that it was the performance of the show but he says he likes the shouty voice (um ... what?)
Marcus (Can You Feel It?)
Marcus' life has changed a lot in the three months since he used to be a hairdresser. No. Shit.
He enters on a platform from the ceiling (obviously) and I'm a little worried that he is suffering from a mild case of vertigo as the start of the song does not sound at all good. Thankfully once he gets onto the higher notes things improve. Phew, don't scare me like that, Marcus.
Louis doesn't think it was the right song choice. I think I agree actually. Tulisa also agrees with us. Kelly wants to see Marcus in the final but thinks it wasn't his best performance. Gary had cotton wool in his ears throughout because he disagrees with the other judges and me. Silly Barlow.
Little Mix (If I Were A Boy)
Why are they your little muffins, Tulisa?
Little Mix find it odd that they didn't begin the competition as a group. One of them even claims not to remember singing on her own. This should probably prompt someone to call a doctor because she is clearly suffering from amnesia.
Oh my god, Little Mix are on a cloud! .... Oh not ... wait ... it's just a year's supply of dry ice. As you were. Vocals are pretty good ... no actually they're very good towards the end of the song.
Louis is reminded of Girls Allowed and the Sugababes. He would also love to see them in the final. I'm fairly sure he wants to see everyone in the final. Kelly insists they need a lead singer. Gary isn't impressed with tonight's vocals. Tulisa looks like she is going to blow a gasket. She wants the Geordies to vote, she wants Essex to vote. Goodness. So much voting. As an aside, here is an insightful comment from one of Little Mix while talking to Dermot, "I think we did the vocals right and stuff." Wow.
Well that's your lot, folks!