Massive On Masson

Oct 2, 2012 by

Massive On Masson

No surprises then with the X Factor final 12, as listed here last week. The wildcard twist also looked to us to be a deliberate ploy for a heart-breaking Chris Maloney rejection, and effectively the pimp slot for him missing out on the 3rd automatic slot among the Overs, before his last minute reprieve.

His show narrative has been based around getting viewers to root for him as this plucky underdog who wants it so badly, but is overcome with nerves. An initial quote of 2-1 with Ladbrokes for him to win the wildcard place really did look a gift from the Gods. And we still saw a lot of value in his price of around 4-5. At 1-2 he makes less appeal but we would make him a 1-5 shot to be called the winner of the pv on Saturday.

As Loyd Grossman was once famed for saying, ‘We’ve deliberated, cogitated and digested…’ and here is our recommended X Factor stratagem for this series ahead of live show 1:

Barring an unexpected meltdown, crisis or illness, Ella looks something of a good thing but a best price of 7-4 makes very little appeal… tell us something we don’t know, Rob. To help get Ella in the green requires some laying of her rivals on Betfair.

For the sake of your bank, it is obviously better to lay those contestants at shorter odds and the one among them that looks a prize lay to us is Jahmene. Nothing about him looks a match with ITV’s mainstream Saturday night audience, sympathy edits and glowing praise from the judges notwithstanding.

His soul boy voice is so affected it’s quite painful to listen to at times, and when he gives it the full treatment he looks and sounds a little bit strange. It doesn’t help that he keeps being dressed up like Tattoo from Fantasy Island. Our every instinct when it comes to shows like X Factor basically screams lay with this guy.

The slight dilemma with Jahmene is, he may well be pimped to the max over early weeks, which will likely see his odds come in from a current lay price on Betfair of 9. So it might pay to hold off on laying him just yet but we would still be happy to get cracking now because it would require a minor miracle for him to win this series.

A cheaper lay strategy with Jahmene would be to lay him for Top Boy. The slight concern here is, you can easily imagine TPTB instigating a Misha B-style mission to save Jahmene when he starts dropping into the bottom 2, and this may result in him still outlasting the other boys.

We expect Rylan to have a decent run but only go so far, so it appears to become a question of how confident you are James Arthur will outlast Jahmene. We think James will last longer but Evens to be Top Boy makes only small appeal, and on balance we would rather stick with laying Jahmene in the Outright market.

Value looks fairly thin on the ground in the Category winner markets – so much so we are even left contemplating a back of Rylan to be Top Boy at 14-1 with SportingBet and Ladbrokes, if only as a potential back to lay should TPTB cut their losses and dump Jahmene unexpectedly early.

There is little doubt they will aim to conjure a powerful pro-Rylan lobby in the customary style of the must-see freak show/cabaret act, and with Ella gliding effortlessly towards the finish line who’s to say they won’t decide to keep this love/hate figure in until the death-throes of the series purely for the sake of entertainment?

Top Girl is a no-go area which leaves us with the Groups and the Overs. In the battle of the boy bands, we think there are enough clues there to believe Union J will progress further than GMD3. They have been painted as the underdog despite being vocally superior to GMD3 and with George Shelley drafted in, this gives them extra impetus as he will be like cat-nip for teen girls country-wide.

A best price of 6-4 Union J to be Top Group with Coral hardly inspires us to rush out the door to back them though and we would favour laying GMD3 to be Top Group on Betfair. The reason for this is, we still see great potential in MK1.

The trouble with MK1 is that such an urban act may struggle to gain traction with X Factor viewers and they look prime material for a hatchet job in the early weeks. The positive spin on MK1 is, if they can nail down excellent performances in the first couple of weeks, receive some pimping and build a following, there is scope for them to have a decent run.

But there remains a nagging belief they have already invested heavily in the boy band head-to-head and want it to be a part of the series narrative, so MK1 are more likely to be surplus to requirements.

This brings us to the Overs where we have detected what we consider the best value back in category betting this series. We are talking here about the yummy mummy with some retro chic – Melanie Masson to be Top Overs at 4-1 with Ladbrokes.

Her excellent vocal will lend itself comfortably to the different styles asked each week, and we expect the Overs to produce a finalist this year with Gary at the helm. We much prefer the credentials of Melanie compared to Kye because he is far too much in the Matt Cardle category of dreary crooners who will ultimately fail post-show, so we think TPTB will probably want shot of him before the show’s latter stages.

Given the composition of this year’s final 13, we think Kye’s middle-of-the-road style might not be the guaranteed vote winner many think it will and he could rapidly tail off. There are far more interesting vocalists in this year’s field and there is something about his look too – a cross between Gary Neville and Russell Kane – and that silly fringe that grates slightly and certainly doesn’t boost his vote appeal.

Melanie potentially has far more x factor than Kye and is infinitely superior in the vocal stakes to the soulless and one-dimensional Carolynne Poole. Forget Maloney. He is dead in the water regardless of the expected fanfare and spike in his pv this Saturday following his presumed wildcard victory. They can also push Melanie’s Scottish ancestry as the series progresses, and as seasoned tv betting aficionados know, this can equate to a massive regional vote.

Yes, on the flipside you can try to argue Melanie could be an easy kill for show-makers but you can say the same about the majority of the field this year and her VTs so far have been consistently positive and strong, with her children also featuring, added to which her makeover looked great. Ultimately, betting needs to be an exercise in value & she has enough potential positives for that 4-1 to look on the big side.

Kye remains her only danger and we would advise taking the Evens Kye purely as a cover for your Melanie stake – i.e., £100 win Melanie at 4-1, £100 win Kye at Evens = £300 profit or zero loss. Dependant on the level of threat you think Kye poses, simply scale stakes and potential profit accordingly as it looks to us to be a definite 2-horse race in the Overs category this year.

We were hoping for bigger than 25-1 e/w Melanie on the high street, and would try and seek better win and place value in Betfair‘s Outright and Top 3 market.

Rumours are already surfacing on Digital Spy regarding song choices for live show 1 this Saturday. There can often be last minute changes but the list looks quite believable. The difficulty is, we need to know the running order, and at this stage can only second guess the treatment they will receive at the hands of the judging panel.

Our instincts tell us the most vulnerable candidates to be in the mix for bottom 2 early in this series are: MK1, Jade, Carolynne and Melanie. MK1 should be suited to ‘Run This Town’, Jade singing ‘Marilyn Monroe’ could be altogether more forgettable, while Carolynne singing ‘Mr Know It All’ should play to her strengths. The same can be said for Melanie with ‘I Heard It Through The Grapewine’.

We really are pissing in the wind trying to work out how things will pan out on Saturday but 25-1, now 20-1 Carolynne with Betfred to be the first elimination looks huge and probably worth a small wager, though a bet on her being in the bottom 2 would be preferable. All things being equal (which they never are), Jade looks the most likely week 1 casualty to us, and if she has an early slot in the running order, Betfred‘s quote of 4-1 will look big.

The remainder of that spoiler list, for those who have not seen it yet:
Ella – Born to Try
Lucy – Pumped Up Kicks
Kye – Black And Gold
Rylan – Evacuate The Dancefloor
Jahmene – Big White Room
James – Teardrop/Dry Your Eyes Mate (mash up)
GMD3 – Simply Amazing
Union J – Lights

What we will aim to do, series-long, is put together a post-Saturday night show article, most likely on a Sunday morning, flagging up the elimination and bottom 2 value as we see it following events the previous night.

For now, and in the spirit of tv betting blog bragging rights, we will give our prediction of the order in which the 13 will fall in this series, but given the ruthless and ever more sophisticated machinations TPTB use to manage the public vote, you need the powers of a Mystic Meg to get things right before the live shows commence.

13th – Jade
12th – Carolynne
11th – wildcard winner (who we predict to be Chris)
10th – MK1
9th – Jahmene
8th – GMD3
7th – Kye
6th – Rylan
5th – Lucy
4th – Union J
3rd – James
2nd – Melanie
1st – Ella

What are your thoughts ahead of the first live show? Is there a value angle we are missing? Who is your stand out bet of the series? How do you see the final 13 falling? Drop us a line and join in the debate!
Rob Furber

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  1. Boki

    Some very reasonable thoughts here Rob, especially I agree on Jahmene lay. No bet for me at the moment in any top category, I don’t think Melanie will do it btw – great vocal but too old fashioned, interesting but does it attract votes? Time will tell but don’t forget she needs to go back to her kids :).

  2. Rob

    Hi Boki, thanks for posting 🙂 At the odds, can make a strong enough case for Melanie for her to be value at the price but like all these things we are trying to 2nd guess the show makers. She will require some bigging up for voters to get behind her but more than any other show XF viewers show themselves to be highly malleable so see no reason why she cannot build a following given the opportunity.
    Keep reading & posting & good luck this series 🙂

  3. Tim B

    Just wrote a lengthy comment but it didn’t send :(.

    Great that you’re tipping Melanie, Rob, especially when few seem to be rating her chances. I think she has a good chance of being top Over, so have taken your tip.

    Jade Ellis seems a strong possibility for first elimination. All things equal, she would poll the fewest votes of all the females in both categories. If Amy is the wildcard, her chance of going will be even higher. I have layed Times Red for the wildcard winner as I can’t pick a winner from the two favourites. Carolynne also seems like a possibility and screams value at the odds. None of the three groups will be safe, and whichever one is up first should be in danger.

    I have relative favourites for elimination Rylan and Melanie as entirely safe this week.

    I’m choosing not to believe the rumoured song choices at this stage. It’s ridiculous to think they’d be out this early plus the Overs said on Daybreak that they haven’t been finalised yet.

  4. Rob

    Sorry about that, Tim. Still a few teething problems with the site but we will get there eventually. Top tip – after copying & pasting the password, copy your Comment too, so if the site is slow, & you lose it, you can then paste it back in when you re-try posting. Not ideal but best solution for now.
    Shrewd back of Carolynne – you’ll likely have chance to lay her at lower odds if she pops up in the first 5 or 6 in the running order. Wouldn’t usually believe such a list put up on DS this early in week, & Britney Spears song was then mentioned as Ella’s new song choice so it could be very dubious. Jade does look a prime candidate for a week 1 execution.

  5. Mitch

    Great write up of the possible outcome for this years XF. Some superb pointers on bets too, considering the markets seem to be sharper this time around and no possible Little Mix coming up on the rails yet??!! Ella looks a shoe-in to me, but she has to play it right and not come across too confident or assured in her journey. The British public love an underdog. Her mere 16 years will hold favour and only hope she delivers all the way. In my opinion her vocal is a on different planet to any of the other pretenders. Melanie a shrewd backing, although I think Gary will mould Kye into a new Barlow. That’s the danger v Melanie. Can’t wait for it all to begin now. Keep up your posts Rob, I’ve been telling some other reality punters about your entertainmentodds!

  6. Rob

    Thanks for the post, Mitch. Another Little Mix is probably asking too much. If there is a big outsider that could do an LM, it’s got to be Melanie but keep a close eye on first few weeks – if MK1 produce the goods, avoid bottom 2 & get some favourable edits they could go far as, like LM, they possibly fill a space in the market & wouldn’t tread on the toes of LM or One Direction.
    Very difficult to see past Ella though – agree her vocal is different gravy. Good luck & keep reading & posting.

  7. Henry VIII

    Rob do you reckon Melanie might be a Tesco Mary, big voice seeing her go reasonably far but ultimately being slaughtered before she gets dangerous? In fact, with their knowledge of Mary, Cowell may start nobbling her earlier.

    MK1 is an interesting one. I think Cowell would like them in his stable and may push them. But rap and the blonde girl “talking black” (I’m just trying to think dispassionately as a gambler) aren’t vote winners for the XF audience.

  8. Rob

    I can picture Melanie as a bona fide, authentic older rock chick, henry, & reckon she is much more marketable than Tesco’s Mary. But we know how this show works & if Syco don’t buy into her then it’ll no doubt be a quick kill a la Craig Colton last year.
    Share your concerns with MK1 – would like to see them given a chance as something different but maybe they won’t fly with the XF audience. Still reckon one of MK1 or Melanie is the value bet for a surprise top 3 finish.

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