Let’s be honest: Your mentors are constantly trying to upstage you with superfluous (sometimes ¡interpretive!) dancers. The apocalyptic on-stage lighting situation is probably only manageable with the use of alcohol, Prozac, intensive psychotherapy or all of the above. And you’re expected to not curl into the fetal position and cry “Mommy!” every time Paulina Rubio slurs into your eyes with a string of words including (but not limited to): “America!” “Nailed it!” “Loved it!” and some mutilated variation on your stage name.
To make matters worse, your first full-length results telecast of the season wound up with inarguably two of the best vocalists in the competition going head-to-head in a sing-off for survival. As Kelly Rowland yelled into the camera, “America, let’s get it together guys!”
So why exactly are you doing this? Top 12 results night brought a significant reminder in the form of a performance from Season 2 finalists Fifth Harmony, the pre-fab group who occasionally overpowered the very loud track behind them on the cute (if gramatically wince-inducing) “Me and My Girls.” Yes, that Ally chick still kind of irks me by overexaggerating everything, but it’s hard to root against 5H’s patented brand of girl power — especially since all of its members can sing in tune. (Too bad the show’s producers didn’t suggest an a capella intro where each one could’ve proved it.)
Anyhow, before the sing-off, the first (and cruelest) elimination went down — with voters sending a strong signal to Simon Cowell that the “Groups” category doesn’t need no stinkin’ background singers (propped up by an even more aggressive backing track). Or perhaps it was a message that said, “We’ve got Fifth Harmony. We don’t need the Skipper doll to their Barbie.” In other words…
First Act to Go Home (aka the Week’s Lowest Vote-Getter)
After that, Selena Gomez took the stage and proved she needs to take some classes from RuPaul to improve her lipsynch game; Colton from Restless Road took first place in a contestant twerking competition (look at that body — he works out!) that was designed to sell shampoo; and Mario Lopez and His Dramatic Transitional “BUT!”s sent acts to safety while Simon served seven different flavors of grimace.
Sent to Safety (“IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER!” –Mario Lopez, channeling the Ghost of Steve Jones)
Carlito Olivero (¡!)
Josh Levi (Paulina: Note how Mario pronounces the child’s last name. Thank you.)
Rion Paige (HER?)
Restless Road (drop it like it’s hot!)
Tim Olstad (HIM?)
Ellona Santiago (HER?)
Lillie McCloud (Look at Simon’s rageface!)
Alex & Sierra (Thank heavens!)
Singing for Survival (A Complete Cosmic Injustice in Two Acts)
Khaya Cohen: Solomon Burke’s “Don’t Give Up on Me” — Glorious, hearfelt, soulful…everything we’ve come to expect from Khaya, who admitted that while it “sucked” to be Bottom 2, she was happy to have a chance to sing her song.
Rachel Potter: Shania Twain’s “From This Moment” — A little unsteady in the opening verse — most likely due to the same emotions that caused her bloodshot eyes. I felt badly for Rachel, who shoulda been Top 4, not Bottom 3, but in terms of the sing-off, she got outsung.
Kelly: Votes to send home Khaya
Paulina: Votes to send home Rachel
Demi: Votes to send home Rachel
Simon: Votes to send home Rachel
Awful, no? What did you think of X Factor Top 12 results? Sound off down in the comments! And for all my reality TV recaps, news, exclusives and videos, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!