The X Factor would have you believe that on the day of auditions in Denver, the entire city wakes up at 6:00 sharp and starts singing "Walkin' On Sunshine" in the shower as one, montage-style. The song continues as Mario reminds us of the categories: Boys, Girls, Over 25s, and Groups, along with clips of the more successful examples of each that we heard last night.
Inside the Denver Coliseum, we're starting with Yosselinn Marquez, a big fan of Paulina Rubio's who nonetheless says she'll be better. Paulina chats with her in Spanish for a bit before Simon takes over the quizzing and asks Yosselinn if she thinks she can win. Before answering, she poses a pertinent question of her own: "What's your name?" Simon blinks loud enough to make a record-scratch noise and tells her, "Simon." Before she even starts, Simon quietly declares her "nutty as a fruitcake" to the other judges, and when she does start, she's using her phone as a karaoke screen, shouting out the lyrics like she's never heard the song before. They go right to a vote, though Paulina wants to skip even that, but the formal no is delivered. Backstage, Yosselinn tells us she doesn't care about the judges and has no idea who Simon even is. We should all be so lucky.
Then an uptight farm kid named Thomas Weiderspon comes out with promisingly deep voice. However, when he sings it turns out that he's got no sense of pitch or rhythm whatsoever. Simon compares him to a shirt with too much starch, so he's on his way out. A 15-year-old named Carrigan Bradley is immediately pegged as a pageant kid by Demi, and if her talent is singing, she probably hasn't won many of them. Kelly says she'd want to see more edge, and Simon says it wouldn't work anyway.
Amber Ferrari is a screamer with a shaky Janis Joplin impression, who Simon calls "a goldfish wanting to be a shark." A pair of young Puerto Rican women sing "Livin' La Vida Loca" several BPM slower than their backing track, and badly enough to make us wonder how they and Ricky Martin could possibly be from the same place. Simon compares them to three-year-olds with the flu, and someone else to a llama in a petting zoo. After all these colorful similes and metaphors, Demi takes a turn at off-key, off-rhythm Sean Harris, attempting a Simon voice to call him "an elephant trying to skydive with a tiny parachute indoors." That was actually a better Simon than Simon.
After a morning of failures, 15-year-old Rylie Brown from Lee's Summit, MO seems hopeful about being the first one through. She's been overpracticing a song for the last month, and it turns out to be "Clarity" by Zed. Which I've never heard, and believe it or not, she forgets the words after the first line. Eventually she recovers and starts singing again. It strikes me as pretty emo and desperate and about 93.276% on pitch, but she appears to have redeemed herself with the crowd and at least some of the judges. After she's done, Simon points out that she messed up. "But who cares when you've got a voice like that?" Paulina tells her that her life is about to change, Demi says she doesn't sound fifteen, and Kelly tells her they can help her with the nerves. Especially since she gets four yeses and is staying in the competition. Otherwise it would probably be hard for the judges to find time to help her.