X Factor luck runs out

We’re a talented bunch, we Islingtonites. Some of us have been world-famous politicians (Tony Blair), some of us were international movie stars (Charlie Chaplin) and some of us can even pat our tummies and rub our heads at the same time. Or should that be the other way round?

Some of us in the borough even get to win TV talent competitions and become superstar singers as a result. Witness Alexandra Burke, who won X Factor in 2008. Since storming the show, Alexandra has lost weight, gained a new haircut and had a record or two on the young person’s hit parade.

Sadly, more Islington-based X Factor success was not to be this year. Our one hope, Paije Richardson, 20, got knocked out last week despite singing his little heart out and smiling a lot on stage.

For those of you not watching X Factor, allow me to summarise. There are four judges who may or not have had a lot of Botox and who all work in the music industry. They pick 16 finalists and mentor four each and then they all have a sing-song each week. Each week the judges have a row, one of the contestants wears a ridiculous outfit and someone gets voted off.

This year, there is a terrible contestant called Wagner who looks like the kind of self-styled lothario you’d avoid in a Tenerife night club. Wagner, unlike our plucky Paije, can’t sing a note but gets kept in by the voting public each week for some unfathomable reason. This means that one actually talented contestant has to leave the show each week while greasy old Wagner stays on, grinning from ear to ear through his masses of facial hair.


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This week it was Paije’s turn to get Wagner-ed, ending Islington’s dreams of achieving another X success. Pajie had an eventful time on the show, notably for being the subject of a string of questionable comparisons by judge/gnome Louis Walsh. Louis compared Paije to the following over the course of three weeks: Lenny Henry, Luther Vandross (mmm, lazy) and Marvin Gaye (erm – wrong).

Paije was just a happy Islington boy making the best of his share in the limelight. At least he has the X Factor live tour to look forward to. Damn you, Wagner!

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