Amelia Next In The Firing Line

Nov 30, 2011 by

‘Though you sense the judges have laid the groundwork for the next Janet fall from grace, if they so desire.’

These proved prophetic words we wrote last week as TPTB finally got their wish and managed to force Janet into the bottom 2. Once there, they couldn’t resist sticking the knife in with their cutting, post sing-off comments. Janet looked relieved to be leaving the show, and who can blame her? We admire her for maintaining her artistic integrity throughout, we loved her rendition of ‘Under The Bridge’, and in that sing-off she showed once again what a haunting vocal she possesses when covering Snow Patrol’s Chasing Cars:

We wonder what they would have thrown at Janet this week had she avoided the bottom 2 again, which she possibly would have done had they not closed the phone lines early – she may well have woken one morning to find a severed horse’s head in her bed.
Four remain, and as of now Little Mix are trading at a best price of 11-8. It would be prudent for those who have followed us backing them all the way down from 66-1 to take some profit now by laying them on Betfair. We still have every confidence they will win the series but it is always best to play it safe.
The main intrigue ahead of this weekend’s semi-final is who will be joining LM in the final. Marcus looks a shoe-in but as LM’s most serious rival, might TPTB try and force him into the bottom 2, and kick him off the show via the sing-off? We wouldn’t put it past them as Marcus looks well-positioned to mop up that dangerous middle-of-the-road, middle-aged vote bloc come the final and is probably the only remaining contestant who can topple LM, who we firmly believe are this year’s Chosen One.
But for balance you would have thought they’d like Marcus in the final, and Sunday’s elimination more likely rests between Amelia or Misha. Given the lengths they have gone to to continually save Misha, putting her through in 3 sing-offs in weeks she was no doubt bottom on the public vote – if she wasn’t they would have taken it to deadlock and let her survive that way instead – we see no logical reason why they would suddenly have a change of heart one week shy of the final.
And we are still of the view TPTB do not want Amelia winning this series because a victory for her would make a mockery of the format, after she was given a bye through 4 live shows. It would also make Kelly Rowland look stupid for kicking her out in the first live show. Amelia has already been bottom 2 once and Barlow told viewers she shouted her way through her sing-off song – hardly the feedback of a potential winner, whereas Misha has received nothing but glowing praise since bully-gate. Barlow has also kept pointing out how Amelia has been given a second chance and the underlying message of his scripted responses could not be any clearer – don’t forget how Amelia got here, folks, and the fact she was booted off previously and as such does not deserve to win.
It will be tough for them to ramp Misha enough to get her public vote above Amelia’s, so our prediction would be a de-ramp of Amelia this Saturday instead to try and get her into the bottom 2.
If, come Sunday evening, Amelia is 2nd bottom on the pv, expect to see a sing-off and another Misha save. But if it’s Little Mix or Marcus who find themselves 2nd bottom, and Amelia is safe, we think Dermot will more likely be announcing, ‘There will be no sing-off, bottom of the public vote will be automatically eliminated’ and they will finally have to accept Misha’s exit.
Given the way TPTB have successfully engineered the eliminations and the bottom 2 in this series, we would back them to pull it off again, and get Amelia into the bottom 2 if they so desire, with LM and Marcus given the resounding backing of the panel to ensure they finish top and 2nd top on the pv.
So looking at the odds, we would recommend backing Amelia to be next eliminated with Totesport at 13-8. We also recommend the 13-8 with Bet365 Marcus is announced safe first. Our money is on LM again being left until last – giving viewers the perception they were closer to landing in the bottom 2 than Marcus. In case they do the unexpected dirty on Marcus, and as a cover, we also recommend taking the 16-1 Marcus is next eliminated with SportingBet, and the widely-available 4-1 Amelia is announced safe first. This cleverly covers what we see as the most likely scenarios.
If Misha does make the final, there is an outside chance she could scupper the LM/Marcus reverse forecast by finishing 2nd. We doubt this will happen, but if Amelia makes it through to the final, we would be a lot more confident she could not finish higher than 3rd. So, again as a safety net, we would advise the LM/Misha straight forecast at 20-1 with Betfred.
Rob Furber

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