X Factor, TV review: Back in the Nick of time... and I know I'll end up loving it

The show slipped straight back into old habits with the first auditionee

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The Independent Culture

“Welcome, to the show that changed MY life,” hollered an excited Olly Murs at a crowd of fame-hungry wannabes who had probably already been queuing for about six hours. And thus, The X Factor 2015 merry-go round began.

Now in its 12th series, the talent show has faced increased criticism in recent years with accusations that the format has become tired. But out to disprove the haters, Caroline Flack energetically informed us that “this is the year of change”.

Changes included the judging panel – well, half of it – thanks to new additions Rita Ora and Nick Grimshaw, the hosts (Murs and Flack) and Cheryl’s name. She’s officially Cheryl Fernandez-Versini now.

Unfortunately, Simon Cowell did not get the memo. He turned up in the same old low-cut white V-neck T-shirt.

And the show slipped straight back into old habits with the first auditionee, 60-year-old grandmother Susan Price from Blackpool.

Predictably, she’s likeable, yet terrible. Less predictably, she shouts over 2 Unlimited “No Limit”’ while smacking her own arse. Nick “loves it” and – predictably – she’s put through to boot camp.

She’s promptly followed by dental receptionist Lauren. With her long, glossy hair Lauren is a dead cert before she even opens her mouth. Predictably, Nick “loves” her and she goes through too.

There’s less love for musical duo and on/off couple Man And Woman. Their attempt to sing Michael Jackson is met with laughter from the live audience but the mood picks up again when care worker Jennifer gives a blinding performance of “Shackles”’. Simon’s excited, Cheryl’s in awe. And Nick? Yeah, he “loved it”.

Predictably, as always, I will repeatedly pretend to hate this show. Even more predictably, come December I guarantee I will be completely hooked and “loving” every second.

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