TV | The X Factor – Are the votes finally in?

X Factor has dominated the Saturday night prime time slot since what feels like the beginning of time, but it may finally be coming to the end of its long reign, as Simon Cowell takes desperate measures to try and boost the show’s falling ratings.

In what has been hailed as one of the biggest TV comebacks in years, Cowell recently announced the UK return of both himself and ex-Girls Aloud member Cheryl Cole, for a new series of X Factor in August.

But is it enough to save the show from its encroaching doom? Ratings in the past few series have slumped, with the show constantly being beaten in the ratings battle by its BBC rival Strictly Come Dancing. The final of the last series, which saw Sam Bailey win the ever-diminishing value of the X Factor crown, produced the lowest ratings since the show first began.

It’s becoming apparent that after 10 years of emphatic dedication, the British population may have finally had its fill of the show’s bickering judges, overly commercialised pop acts and embarrassingly over-wrought emotion. The show’s prize has become increasingly meaningless, with many of the competition’s past winners lying in the dustbin of failed musical careers. I mean, who on earth is Leon Jack- son? The thought of dedicating every Saturday night for six long months to watching a group of mediocre karaoke singers battle it out for an empty record deal and another forgettable Christmas single has become deeply unappealing.

There is a chance that Simon and Cheryl can bring some life back in to the show, but they will only stall its ultimate decline. The talent show-cum-karaoke contest surely can’t continue into the infinite future. There’s growing void in the Saturday night TV viewing schedule and one doubts if Cowell and Cole will be enough to fill it.

Jessica Murray

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