X FACTOR RECAP: The Auditions Hit Greensboro!
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by Kelsey Denette
The X Factor was headed to Greensboro in tonight's episode, and that means lots of country music, Simon asking "to try a grit," and even more singers vying for the attention of the judges. Whether you missed the show or just want to re-live an audition, read on for a full recap of tonight's show!
The first five minutes of the show are the obligatory "judges getting ready in the makeup room" clips (or it could have been twenty, I don't know, I fast forwarded through most of that segment after about forty solid seconds of Britney Spears putting on lip gloss), and that led into the first audition: 17-year-old Willie Jones, who with a totally 90s look and a resonantly low country song (Josh Turner's "Your Man") earned four yeses to kick off the night.
Kalvin McManigle is up next - he's a 47-year-old country singer and Britney jokes that they might be related when he kinda-maybe-sort-of hits on her. I'm sure he's a nice enough guy, but nobody on the panel can understand a word he says or sings, and his singing is akin to Simon's imitation of a southern accent (which is to say horrible and strange on so many levels). So obviously he doesn't go through but I wish him luck with his self-described profession: attaching handles to lawnmowers.
The next auditioner, 18-year-old Julia Bullock, is unemployed but talks a lot about being how being unemployed with her band shows that she's driven. "The band's broken up as of today," her ex-boyfriend and fellow band member tells her, which naturally causes her to tell the judges that the band is passionate about continuing without her if she gets picked. She's not bad on "Pumped Up Kicks" by Foster The People, but the fact that every five seconds they show her weepy ex backstage kind of puts a damper on this one. Not for Julia, though: she sails through and hugs everyone including Weepy Ex without noticing whether or not they return the hug (spoiler alert: he doesn't).
After an in-show commercial for Pepsi, once again showcasing the judges' completely Oscar-worthy acting abilities, 21-year-old Krysten Colon hits the stage shaking like a leaf. She sings an Adele song ("Don't You Remember") and due to Simon's blinding and kind of irrational hatred of Adele, he sends her off to pick another song before they'll vote.
Jeffrey Adam Gutt sings one of my favorite songs, Leonard Cohen's oft-covered "Hallelujah," and while some of his gravelly tone is a little too forced, I'd add this version to the dozens of others that circulate through my iTunes if it were a studio recording. His 4-year-old son, Talon, joins him on stage and in this case, I'm totally fine with Jeffrey pulling the look-at-my-cute-kid card because Talon is adorable.
And so we once again end the show on a positive note. Oops, nope, we get a bunch of one-second clips from the worst auditions - from the wavering rockers to the overzealous divas - thrown in with thunder and lightning noises and clips of all the rain that was apparently going on in Greensboro over the summer.
Then Krysten's back, and she's chosen Whitney Houston's "I Have Nothing." She's wasn't that bad the first time around, but girl, why would you choose a Whitney Houston song? It starts out poorly, turns into a hot mess as soon as she hits the chorus and it only gets worse from there. After getting shot down, Krysten goes from shy and nervous to unhinged and insane. She starts throwing water at the cameras, screaming at her family to get out of her eaaaar and threatening the staff with a folding chair - WWE style - before running off into the rain. "She knew that this was a possibility, and I apologize," her mother says, calmly watching her daughter run around the building like a madwoman. What?
And so it's on that note that we end the show - but tune in next week to see, according to the commercial: people freaking out, someone headed to the hospital and Simon riding a scooter. And some of that singing thing. Did you have a favorite tonight?