Gary Flockhart: X fails to mark spot for Janet

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THE X Factor still has a couple of weeks to run, but I’ve already washed my hands of it, having seen my favourite voted off last weekend.

Actually, that’s a tad dramatic. I’ve only dipped in and out of the show since it began in the summer, and even then it was only to see the progress of young Janet Devlin, the only singer with an ounce of originality among this year’s contenders.

Back in August, The X Factor judges came close to tears as the Irish teen gave what has since gone down as one of the best auditions in the show’s history. Right away, the bookies declared Devlin as the favourite to win, though I never thought for a moment that she would.

Here was a unique and raw talent and, maddeningly, those are not qualities that this glorified karaoke show has ever been big on.

In recent weeks I’ve spoken to both Jessie J and Pixie Lott – currently two of the UK’s most successful female artists – and both girls said how glad they are not to have taken the X Factor route.

“Sure, X Factor is a great platform – you’ve instantly got attention from viewers and the media – but I wanted to have my own voice and do things my way,” said Pixie. Jessie said much the same.

The crux of it is this: Janet Devlin was far too indie- orientated to win a show like The X Factor.

It was clear from the word go that she wouldn’t be comfortable being part of the Simon Cowell machine and, for that reason, the judges, perhaps with a little prompting from the high-waisted one himself, couldn’t wait to see the back of her.