Honey-moon Period

Nov 8, 2016 by

Honey-moon Period

Those who took the advice here pre-show and backed 5 After Midnight for elimination and to be in the bottom 2, knew their fate within minutes of the start of the show when Dermot revealed the running order with the boyband awarded the pimp slot.

5 After Midnight had been heavily supported in both markets. It was the tv betting equivalent of latching onto a horse to win the Grand National, watching the price plummet before the off, only for him to fall at the first fence. The best-laid plans…

The most intriguing aspect of last weekend came on Sunday when Dermot informed us there was 1% between 1st and 2nd, and 1% between 2nd and 3rd. A 4% difference among the bottom 4 was a lot less newsworthy though likely confirmed it was Ryan who crept above the bottom 3.

Given Matt was deramped – singing an unsuitable song; producing by far his weakest vocal during the lives so far; performing in the coffin slot during the Strictly overlap; and receiving his most lukewarm post-song appraisals from the judges – while his most likely pursuers on the vote, Emily and 5 After Midnight, enjoyed lavish praise once more and sang last and second last, these figures seem good news for Matt’s long-term prospects.

As a good-looking, middle-of-the-road solo male Matt still holds all the aces in this series if TPTB are happy for him to win, and don’t actively try and stop him

A bump in the road at some point seemed inevitable as they couldn’t keep eulogising him week after week without the series looking like a foregone conclusion. In fact, the concertinaing of the vote was probably done precisely with the intention of Dermot having the chance to announce a close top 3, making viewers think the competition is wide open.

Matt was called safe last on Sunday too which, following the announcement of a close top 3, was arguably an immediate call to arms for his voters. And as a good-looking, middle-of-the-road solo male he still holds all the aces in this series if TPTB are happy for him to win, and don’t actively try and stop him.

Emily’s biggest hurdle in this series is the repetition of slowed-down songs becoming dull and dreary. ‘What Makes You Beautiful’ fell well below ‘Creep’. You also start to wonder if X Factor is the ideal platform for someone like Emily if they want to paint her as something of an alternative artist putting her plaintive spin on tracks.

Presumably they will have to let her off the leash this weekend and allow her to sing something uptempo during ‘Disco Week’. They may present this as a successful switch but she is much more in her wheelhouse singing the slowed-down stuff.

Might Honey G have been among the top 3? The view here is, more likely not. While the show has done a great job of building her up, there has also been a sense of it having to push extremely hard out of fear she could fall into the bottom 3 without their premium-grade pimping.

TPTB have done a clever job in going maximum velocity boosting Honey G, while making sure Sam has been unable to get out of first gear. A succession of far from ideal song choices for her and running order positions of 2, 5, 4, 6, 2 say it all and it was ‘job done’ when she fell into the bottom 3.

It now has her, Ryan and Saara where it wants them and you have to anticipate these 3 biting the dust over the next 3 weeks. The order doesn’t really matter; you sense TPTB’s focus will simply be keeping Honey G above all 3 of them which should be quite straight forward.

The relentless pimping of Honey G really only makes sense with a view to getting her to the final much the same way the show ramped Reggie ’n’ Bollie last year

And following this line of thought to its logical conclusion, would most likely lead to a 5 After Midnight Honey G sing-off in the semi-final. Given 5 After Midnight are consistently out of tune it might not be as hard as it first appears for the judges to save Honey G on the grounds she will bring the fun to Wembley.

The relentless pimping of Honey G really only makes sense with a view to getting her to the final much the same way the show ramped Reggie ’n’ Bollie last year. Disco should also play to Honey G’s strengths this weekend.

It is just a question of at what point they drop the flashvote. With Sam, Ryan and Saara easily navigated into the bottom 3 this weekend they may allow it to stand for at least one more week.

Sunday night’s sing-off looked something of a coin toss though Saara’s treatment on the Saturday was a proper vote-killer and left you wondering if it was the end of the road for her. You sense Saara was probably bottom of the vote which is why Four Of Diamonds endured a 3-1 takedown at the hands of the judges.

It always amuses when Cowell has the audacity to spin it out as doing the right thing following a sing-off, having saved the dirty work for his 3 paid-off accomplices the previous week when giving Gifty the boot.

Looking at the side markets, Louis is now looking most likely to lose all his acts first, which is a best-priced 5-6 with Skybet at time of posting, and Honey G looks the bet to finish in the top 3 which is a miserly 4-6 with Betfred. Not really the sort of prices that appeal from a value perspective, especially thinking about how a potential Honey G vs 5 After Midnight sing-off might be priced up come the semi-final.

Things do look rather predictable from this point on but let’s see what this week’s song choices bring as X Factor always has the potential to throw a curveball and the strive will continue here to pinpoint value in what has been a hugely profitable series. Keep an eye on Comments below for an update after we learn this week’s songs.


  1. Rob

    This week’s ‘disco’ songs & initial thoughts


    Saara Aalto: No More Tears (Enough is Enough) – Can envisage another hot mess for this. The song itself could easily turn into a bit of screech-fest.

    Honey G: Stayin’ Alive – The N-Trance version should be in Honey G’s wheelhouse. More bigging up of Honey G on the cards.


    Emily Middlemas: Wishing on a Star – The show is still ensuring Emily avoids uptempo. In Disco Week this choice enables her to stand out and should be ideal for Emily.

    Sam Lavery: I Will Survive – A potential karaoke stitch up. Poor Sam has not been given anything that allows her to properly shine series-long.


    Ryan Lawrie: Play That Funky Music – Hard to see this being especially good for Ryan.

    Matt Terry: Best of My Love – Not really stand-out for Matt. It’s a track that doesn’t really go anywhere.


    5 After Midnight: Boogie Wonderland – A good choice for the boyband. Superb disco classic.

    It looks an easy week for TPTB to secure presumably their ideal bottom 3 of Sam, Saara and Ryan. If the flashvote remains, Ryan is fav to win it again.

    If the flashvote isn’t used Ryan and Saara look the most likely bottom 2. Saara was probably bottom of the pv last week.

    Very hard to invest in the elimination market as things stand so no bet at this stage.

    • stoney

      I see Emilys choice as a deramp Rob. We know that It’s 99% likely she matched Matt is the votes last week. Now she’s being given a song that has had to acts drop into the bottom 2. They are also in danger of making viewers bored of her. She’s becoming a 1 trick pony. A boring one at that.

      • Rob

        I agree, stoney, that the repetition of the slowed-down stuff does risk becoming boring, and the one-trick pony tag was why I had doubts about Emily lasting the course pre-series. Will be interesting to see where Emily is put in the running order tomorrow night.

  2. Rob

    With the flashvote dropped according to the Daily Star, Ryan looks much more vulnerable tonight esp. given his song choice.

    The view here is, Saara was bottom of the pv last week & it is going to be hard for her to jump out of the bottom 2 without a massive producer push.

    Sam has a fair chance of rising above Ryan on the vote this week as last week seemed purely about giving him a week off from winning the flashvote because it was getting so predictable.

    So, Saara vs Ryan looks the most likely sing-off pre-show. The fix allegations the show has to fend off could yet work in Ryan’s favour – a sing-off save for him would give them a chance to show the flashvote wasn’t dropped to ensure he is ditched.

  3. Rob

    Sam endured a nuking of epic proportions, with the show placing her in trap 2 again and giving her a vote-killing VT, comments and arrangement for ‘I Will Survive’.

    More so after they did their best to talk up Saara who performed first and got an ad break after her performance. Ryan also got a fair amount of positivity following Sam.

    5 After Midnight’s vocals were poor again but it is always handy when you are given a backing track to fall back on, the judges inform how great you are and the studio audience is built up into a frenzy. They look very much back in the game for a potential final appearance.

    Matt was better than last week but ‘Best Of My Love’ wasn’t the ideal song choice for him. Emily, who followed, was far worse. For her not to be given uptempo looks a blatant pigeon-holing. Her r.o.s and staging elements have been favourable but this was a clear deramping.

    Honey G got the kitchen sink from the pimp slot but it was a performance that fell rather flat. The problem for her is, her rap act is too one-dimensional.

    It looks a clear Sam + 1. Saara will have needed to get past Ryan on the pv. It’s far from certain she will have risen above the bottom 2.

    Emily’s vote will have fallen but maybe not enough to drag her down. It looks most likely to be a Sam vs Ryan sing-off.

    One reason why they may want to save Ryan is to try & manipulate a Ryan Emily sing-off next week. At the odds, Ryan is the value elimination bet at 5-2 but given Sam’s treatment last night, you’d have to be concerned they will contrive a Sam exit tonight, possibly via deadlock, as they may well have succeeded in getting her bottom of the pv.

    No bet advised this week.

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