I’ve suffered through the debut week of the X Factor and I can confidently say the show is a dud. We’ve seen it all before. The show is formulaic and treacly and I now understand why Cheryl Cole was fired.
The X Factor is Simon Cowell’s baby. He runs the show. He’s the star. The most interesting and freshest part of the debut was the revelation of Cheryl Cole as a sitting judge. She was interesting and fresh and fun. I think she was a little too pretty for Paula and a little too smart for Simon and that’s why she was doomed to go because, you see, the breakout start of X Factor had to be Simon Cowell — who would finally come into his own as a kingmaker beyond his American Idol boundaries. With Cheryl Cole stealing his muscle, Simon had a Hobson’s Choice: Let Cheryl take over the USA, and the show that was his baby, or smother her in an American crib before she had the chance to outshine him.
We know the choice he made. Simon Cowell met his Waterloo in Cheryl Cole and so he booted her back to the shadow of the UK. By getting rid of Cole, Cowell removed the one risk to his spotlight — but now the show is worse for her weaning.
Today, we are left with American Idol retreads and a pale imitation of the grammatically challenged “America’s Got Talent.” When Nick Canon has a better show than Simon Cowell, there’s trouble in Foxland.
With the rise of The Voice and Jennifer Lopez’s $24 million Idol payday — the X Factor lacks a personality punch and a wowser factor. The judges are dull. The talent is foolish. We sit there staring and waiting for something interesting and important to strike us back and we’re left empty and disappointed. If the X Factor can’t inspire us just a little bit, then the reason for the show’s being is nullified by its own boredom and lack of imagination.