X Factor
Live Show #1

Episode Report Card
M. Giant: B- | Grade It Now!
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Simon vs. L.A.

Demi ends up giving her all-black hair with chunky bangs, and Jennel does a sort of Vegas revue version of Motley Crue's "Home Sweet Home," which is ironic because that seems to be the last place everybody on the show wants to go. L.A. says he didn't expect it and calls it a ten, "And you just convinced me that you could win." Britney was sufficiently jarred into alertness to say Jennel rocked it out, and Simon's only criticism is that Demi's trying to make Jennel her clone. "That is complete narcissism," says Simon Cowell of all people. Demi says she's so proud of her she's near tears, and pictured Jennel performing in an arena. And not as her clone, because after all, only one of them is wearing chains right now.

Britney introduces Diamond White by telling us how "dear" and "precious" she is. During their mentoring session, Britney gives her all sorts of positive feedback wrapped around the bitter pill of "try to stay true to the song." Which is a bitter pill indeed, as that song turns out to be "Hey Soul Sister" by Train.

Ugh. She bops it on the stage, accompanied by a dance squad of teen refugees from the long-since-dissolved Rhythm Nation while wearing a hat with big, chunky "USA" letters on it. L.A. says it started a little weak, but she made it hers by the end. "Yay!" says Diamond, with her demographic's love of a happy ending. Demi asks Diamond to be less reserved and have more fun. Simon is only positive, saying he's seeing lots of talent tonight, Britney did well with her, and Diamond came across as a relevant pop star. Britney just says she's proud of her and she was amazing. Britney's spending a lot of time tonight being amazed.

Vino talks about how this represents an opportunity to give his son a stable life, and we see him sitting at a diner with the 15-year-old, Sky, who misses him but is supportive. L.A. interviews that he wasn't happy about the category he was saddled with, but Vino's helped him get over that. Now if he can only help Vino get over his insecurities.

For his live performance, Vino stalks the stage in front of what looks like a full rock band, but he's singing a Nickelback song, which tends to shatter the illusion. The intro's low and not really in his range, but he picks it up by the end.

After he's done, Britney says she was a little bored. Not sure how that's any different. Demi agrees with me that he was shaky at the beginning, and "I just have a hard time seeing you as a pop star." Simon tells Vino he likes him and he has an incredible voice, but the song and the arrangement were completely wrong and turned him into "some horrible cover singer," and that L.A. "completely and utterly cocked this up." Oops, can't say that on U.S. TV, apparently, and somebody in the booth hits the dump button. L.A. tells Vino that he hasn't let criticism stop him all his life and isn't going to now. That doesn't exactly refute what the other judges said, though.

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