Dave Pollock: Sadly, X Factor is all part of Cowell's plan to own pop music

Share
Related Topics

An air of depressing inevitability hangs over The X Factor winner Joe McElderry's version of Miley Cyrus' "The Climb" as it grinds its way to the Christmas No 1 slot next week. There will be those who remember when guessing the holder of the festive top spot was a bit of seasonal fun, before Simon Cowell annexed it as part of his masterplan to own pop music.

An impressive rearguard action has been fought this year on Facebook by resistance fighters endeavouring to have Rage Against the Machine's anti-establishment rant "Killing in the Name" – a choice that's somewhat compromised by the fact the Californian anarcho-punks are signed to Sony, the same empire of which Cowell's X Factor-releasing Syco label is an arm.



Besides, how to stand up to a pop cultural juggernaut which sees George Michael wheeled out to perform his own song like so much bronze-tinted window dressing, and Paul McCartney prostrating himself on the X altar with a version of "Drive My Car" alongside the ludicrously-coiffured novelty pop hydra Jedward and the other finalists?



The manner of McElderry's defeat of fellow finalist Olly Murs was notable mainly for the quantity of indoor fireworks unleashed, and the Victorian flamboyance of Cheryl Cole's black ballgown, which resembled a wedding cake constructed from licorice. Certainly the song destined to crush the competition by next Sunday is a damper squib than most the X Factor has bent to its will – an aspirational ballad from Hannah Montana which notes in familiarly overblown terms that there's always going to be "another mountain" and "an uphill battle", and that "sometimes I'm gonna have to lose". We can but hope that swaggering crooner – and newfound friend to Robbie Williams – Murs was playing close attention to what he was singing at that point.



Of the many other Facebookers who have declared their own favourite song as a contender, perhaps we should bow to the individual who has pitched up requesting support for Half Man Half Biscuit's "It's Cliched to Be Cynical at Christmas". Or maybe we should just note McElderry's doe eyes and heart-throb pout, and his resemblance to sometime talent contest idol Gareth Gates? The same Gareth Gates, incidentally, who could be seen playing along with Vernon Kaye at Family Fortunes just before X Factor started. The charitable might hope McElderry manages better.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper

£23000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This small, friendly, proactive...

Recruitment Genius: Photographic Event Crew

£14500 - £22800 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developers - .NET / ASP.NET / WebAPI / JavaScript

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Software Developer is required to join a lea...

Austen Lloyd: Corporate Tax Solicitor - City

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: A first rate opportunity to join a top ranking...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

After Savile, we must devote our energies to stopping child abuse taking place right now

Mary Dejevsky
A ‘hugely irritated’ Sir Malcolm Rifkind on his way home from Parliament on Monday  

Before rushing to criticise Malcolm Rifkind, do you know how much being an MP can cost?

Isabel Hardman
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower