The X-Factor, "Finale": Happy festivus

Quick Take: The X-Factor, "Finale"
A holiday for the rest of us. 


Review: The X-Factor, “Finale”
(S0126) I am not a scrooge. Really. The Boyfriend didn’t want a tree this year and I huffed and puffed and pouted until we got a tree. A real one. That messes with his allergies. We have been burning nothing but cookie-scented candles since Thanksgiving because I was gifted with the amazing power to burn the actual cookies into molten piles of inedible charcoal. There is gingerbread flavored creamer in our fridge right now and every time we drive past a McDonald’s I pine for an eggnog milkshake the way five-year-olds pine for Happy Meals. 

I am not a scrooge or a grinch though I may occasionally moonlight as the bumble snow monster. I just accept the fact that people are going to go back to cutting me off on the parkway and not holding the elevator door open as soon as Dick Clark goes back into his cryogenic freeze pod. With that said, tonight’s installment of The X-Factor would have been infinitely more hilarious if we could see everyone snarking at one other in 2012 instead of calling it quits to the tune of some schmaltzy Christmas tunes and a bunch of shiny montages.

I’m especially tickled by how every seasonal song performed was introduced as a “holiday” song, but every single one was, in fact, a Christmas song. A secular Christmas song, sure, but still specifically a Christmas song. Lazy attempts at political correctness make me laugh because I’m a bad person and it seems that no season is as rife with PC-fail as this one.

The first half of this two-hour special was dedicated to showcasing the final three contestants: Chris Rene, Melanie Amaro, and Josh Krajcik. Each contestant performed a Christma- HOLIDAY song without judgement. America voted last night. Tonight was nothing but a big party. A party which admittedly could have been shorter, I mean, one solid hour of the two was nothing but established musicians performing for the sake of ratings and hype and I am always at my happiest when Justin “Rape happens for a reason” Bieber isn’t on my television.

The final three each performed their chosen songs delightfully, with Melanie Amaro invoking Mariah Carey during “All I want for Christmas is You”, Chris Rene crooning through “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and Josh Krajcik bringing a little Charles Brown to the party with “Please Come Home for Christmas.” Everyone fell all over everyone else in an attempt to saturate the stage with compliments and goodwill despite the fact that this is a program that would usually fit in better during tomorrow’s Airing of Grievances.

As opposed to the usual dramabomb departures, tonight’s contestants reminded us of why they were at the top with ample grace and maturity. Chris Rene departed at the break after a long reign among the highest votes, expressing his gratitude at the opportunity to perform, his thanks to the judges and voters.

Krajcik and Amaro’s duet of David Bowie’s “Heroes” was so good I might have to demand that it make an appearance on my iPod and their chemistry and mutual talent and respect for one another meshed perfectly. When it was revealed that Melanie Amaro is the winner of the first American edition of The X-Factor, Josh was every bit as composed and gracious as Chris. I really hope we see him and Melanie perform together again.

Additional highlights:

  • The Final Twelve contestants each returned to perform the opening song tonight. Lady Gaga’s “Edge of Glory.” Am I the only one who giggled at the fact that the runners-up (under probable contractual obligation) performed a song about being almost the best?
  • Rachel Crow (who I was still sorry to see go) was in high spirits during her guest spot. She said there are good things coming (Record deal? Probably.) and gave that shellack-haired buffoon of a host a run for his money when they stuck a teleprompter in front of her. Actually, Steve Jones’ thirty seconds of interaction with Crow was my favorite moment of the night. I would watch the Steve and Rachel show. Yes I would.
  • Of course Drew performed with Bieber. Of course she did. I’m surprised that the rage-induced glare that I shot toward the shiny new Christmas-TV (HD at laaaaaaaaast) didn’t burn a hole through the screen.
  • By MaryAnn Sleasman

    About the author

    MaryAnn was raised by television because her parents were too cheap to get a babysitter. Some people have fond memories of summer camp, she has Salute Your Shorts rerunsStalk her on Twitter at @radium_girl.

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