Saturday, March 10, 2007

Not going quietly

To be honest, the spat over the sacky-dumping of sacky-dumpling Louis Walsh from the X Factor looks like it might deliver more in the way of top entertainment than the show itself ever did. Louis is not happy:

I was really shocked, I have to admit that. I did feel like I had been stabbed in the back.

“With Simon, it’s all about work. He told me, ‘It’s nothing personal’.”

Cowell, of course, has denied he sacked Louis at all:
“Much like Coronation Street, we have to make changes to a long-running hit show — and sometimes, the most popular people have to go. Louis has been in discussions about the commitment he could offer, and he was so busy with his management career.

“It just worked out that it would be better if we got a new judge.

“So this didn’t come completely out of the blue.

“Louis is not unhappy, I spoke to him and he’ll be very much part of the X Factor as he’ll be managing all the new talent and the winner.”

Curious that Cowell - asked to react to how unhappy Louis is about being dumped - tries to insist that he's not unhappy at all.

It's also interesting that Cowell - who, we're lead to believe, is so good at telly - thinks that Coronation Street ever actively drops its most popular characters. Sure, the Hildas and Enas and Freds do depart, but I can't think of a single occasion where a popular character has been axed by Granada; it's always at the actor's request (or, at a push, because the actor has become impossible to work with, Len Fairclough.)

Walsh, though, seems to know little about TV, either, predicting that the removal of Kate Thornton (the Connie Clayton of the X-Factor) will have consequences akin to scaring rooks from the Tower of London:
“It was a bad move sacking Kate. She was like a mother figure for all the acts. She will be a big loss.

“It was made worse because Simon and ITV kept telling Kate she was safe, that she’d be staying. But it would seem Simon’s word is NOT his bond.”

Cowell, for his part, claims that he argued for the pair to stay, but ultimately it was ITV's decision. Although we can't think of the last time ITV made a decision that wasn't one the BBC had taken six months before.

The X-Factor may be graced with Chris Moyles as one of the judges next season - one of the "names in the ring", says Cowell. Surely it's incompatible for a Radio One dj to be choosing Magic FM friendly bands and singers, isn't it?

Of course, this exciting scuffle offscreen is a handy diversion from the questions about the premium-rate voting system used for the series? Who wants to look too closely into how that worked when you could watch Simon and Louis having a row, eh?

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