We don’t need “an army of Frankie Cocozzas” on The X Factor
Written by Adam Postans
He was the bad boy of last year’s X Factor, making headlines for all the wrong reasons and booted out for his infamous late-night partying and boasts of drug taking.
So you’d probably assume that after all the trouble Frankie Cocozza caused them, the show’s producers would want to draw a line (no pun intended) under the whole sorry affair and ensure the next batch of contestants are whiter than white.
Not a bit of it. According to reports, they’re planning the complete opposite.
Sources say the 16 finalists will be living in a five-star central London hotel within vomiting distance of the city’s swanky bars and nightclubs, with the aim being to assemble “an army of Frankie Cocozzas”.
He was being thrown out of clubs, getting publicly trollied, and having run-ins with the paparazzi
It’s a horrific prospect – one Frankie Cocozza was bad enough – made all the worse by the thought process behind it.
The programme’s bosses reckon the latest series was flat (they wouldn’t be wrong in that assumption) and hope that by placing the wannabes near the bright lights of temptation, instead of in a house two-and-a-half hours from the capital’s nightlife as was previously the case, they’ll get up to “newsworthy” antics, namely being thrown out of clubs, getting publicly trollied, having run-ins with the paparazzi and generally making a scene.
This is the last thing The X Factor needs, regardless of the fact that it’s nothing more than an irresponsible attempt to generate hype and claw back lost ratings.
It is, however, an admission that the series is not first and foremost a singing competition, which it certainly is not.
It’s a good old Saturday night television show that lives and dies on how entertaining the novelty acts are, like Wagner, Jedward and Chico, and the wit, banter and rivalry of the judges, who frankly didn’t cut it during the 2011 live stages.
He was by some margin the worst singer but was saved by the judges as early as week two because he was rock n roll
These two cornerstones are what the producers should be concentrating on to return The X Factor to past glories.
Instead, they’re labouring under the delusion that “only Cocozza had the right idea last year” and so they must replicate him.
Give me strength. He was by some margin the worst singer but was saved by the judges as early as week two, the first public vote which placed him in the bottom two, because he was “rock n roll”.
They knew he’d be a talking point. There’s no such thing as bad publicity and all that.
There was a film crew following him out on the lash, pulling birds and getting smashed
What the panel, Gary Barlow in particular, failed to realise was that Cocozza was simply an unwelcome distraction.
His regrettable treatment highlighted the worst excesses of a two-faced TV show that sent a film crew to follow him “out on the lash, pulling birds and getting smashed” for his VTs, only to wash their hands of him for doing exactly what they’d hoped and indeed encouraged him to do.
What won’t bring the viewers flooding back is more of the same.
There is, though, one possible use for “an army of Cocozzas”- genetically create one and send it to the Falkland Islands. Argentina won’t come within 100 miles of the place.
@Adam Postans is a freelance journalist and TV columnist and once had a column in The Sun.
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