X Factor
Top 12 Perform

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The Dirty Dozen (a.k.a. Josh and 11 Other Acts)

Time for Lakoda Rayne, the all-girl Frankengroup consisting of Cari, Dani, Hayley, and Paige, who didn't make it as soloists but got to the top 12 as a group, which had nothing to do with any level of investment by the judges who put them together. Paula explains that the concept of this performance is for each girl to portray a season, which makes it sound like it's going to be waaay too Grease 2 for my taste. Simon agrees with me in his interview clip that it's ridiculous, and L.A. says it's cornball. We're about to see (spoiler: it is).

Their song is "Landslide" by Fleetwood Mac, and they're all in long gowns of different colors while images of different seasons are projected on the screens behind them. Which is less cornball than in Grease 2 but not by a whole lot. The sing begins with a shaky solo by Dani and some more shaky harmonies throughout. They get through it, though. L.A. tells them they look incredible, and they found their "blend," but he wants them to get off the fence already. Nicole likes everything about it, including the seasons look. Simon says they sound a lot better than they have, but calls the season's idea "literally insane." Paula blames his attitude on the one season in London, and then invites the girls to go get frozen yogurt afterward. I'm sure they're grateful for that spirited defense. Steve comes back and mixes it up with Simon a bit over the girls' look before voting-instructioning us to the break.

Josh's, turn, and Nicole introduces him as "even more than a burrito maker." Generous. We learn that he's got a long-term girlfriend going back eight years, who occasionally supported him during that time. Well, going by the veritable album of old photos propped up on the screen, he used to be a lot cleaner. The song Nicole has assigned him is "Jar of Hearts," which Simon has doubts about, saying in his pre-performance comments that Josh and the song don't go together. We'll see.

Josh sings ankle-deep in stage fog, doing effortlessly well as always, not having to push himself at all and really just marking time until the makeover episode. When he's done, L.A. may be alluding to that, saying he enjoyed Josh's "before" but really digs his "after." Josh still needs more after. Paula says he can sing anything, and Simon lies that he's going to make it quick before saying he takes it all back; it was like Josh wrote the song. Nicole barely pulls herself together in time to talk about hearing Josh's voice in her veins. Okay, that can't be healthy. Steve demands an immediate hug from Josh, suit and all, and then it's back to the voting instructions.

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