This year’s X Factor has been one of the most controversial and headline grabbing to date – Cheryl’s malaria, Gamu-gate, the wildcards and power of the novelty act (when will Wagner go, this is getting ridiculous?!).How much longer can it last? Public outrage and anger seem to be at an all-time high. Looking on Facebook on a Saturday night and almost the entire homepage for the duration of the show is dedicated to moans and groans about this year’s barmy contestants and bitchy judges.
But all publicity is good publicity, right?
This statement could not be truer than in the case of Katie Waissel, or ‘Cockroach Katie’ as I have dubbed her. I have been told by friends that this is a very mean and nasty name but let me explain: Nothing can get this girl off that show. If there was a nuclear holocaust, I would bet good money she would still be on that stage singing badly (to averagely in the odd case). Forgetting her words, public meltdowns, spats with all and sundry, kiss and tells and family revelations –these all get people talking and that’s what Simon Cowell et al need. They no longer need us to like the contestants, in fact it’s better we don’t.
The press won’t devote pages to how lovely a contestant is, how well they’ve done in their exams, the granny they helped cross the street – but find a public hate figure and hey bingo. The same goes for social networking. No status gets more comments than an angry X Factor one. Or if some crazy friend, who shall remain nameless, pipes up that she now quite likes Katie and admits that publicly.
The X Factor has changed with the times. Social media has allowed us to be ever more vocal in our bitching and gossiping. I don’t know how much longer it can survive in its current form but for every week we say we’re going to boycott it, ‘it’s all a fix’, it’s guaranteed by the following Saturday we’re switched right back on and, judging from the viewing figures, we’re all sucked in.
Suzanne Mackie is an account manager at Indigo.