The rank outsider to win the X Factor at a whopping 12/1 with Ladbrokes, we still remember a time when Andrea Faustini was regarded as the runaway favourite to win the competition.
And while Fleur East may be the current front-runner at 2/5 with the bookmaker, followed by Ben Haenow at 5/2 we think it’s high time people were reminded of just how awesome a singer the Italian is and always will be.
With that in mind, here are his five finest X Factor moments of the series so far.
Like Susan Boyle on Britain’s Got Talent before him, Andrea entered the X Factor with the programme makers determined the portray the Pug-loving man-bear as a weirdo.
Clutching a miniature Mel B toy still knocking about from the Scary Spice era and with a bemused panel of judges in front of him, little was expected of the Italian … until he started singing.
Simon Cowell was the first to react, shocked that someone who didn’t look like a statuesque model could belt out a song – oh Simon, did you learn nothing from SuBo?!! Evidently not…
Wearing a shirt plucked straight from the black bag marked “for the recycle bin” in charity shops up and down the country, Andrea headed to judges houses with one thing in mind – shaking things up.
He duly achieved that with an emotional rendition of Jennifer Hudson’s “I’m Telling You” that had Mel B in tears and his on-looking rivals for a spot on the live shows green with envy.
In a performance drenched in poignancy not even the alarming presence of a pair of cut-off denim short-shorts that even Britney Spears would brand “risqué” could hinder his chances of progress.
The King of Pop
The first week of live shows and with everyone keen to impress and avoid being the first person unceremoniously ditched from the show, Andrea opted to take one hell of a risk.
“Earth Song” is among the toughest of Michael Jackson’s songs to perform live – even the big man himself struggled with it at the Brit Awards, thanks in no small part to the arse-waving antics of Jarvis Cocker – but like the heavyweight champ he is, the Italian Stallion delivered.
With the performance even making an appearance on Channel 4’s Gogglebox, here’s hoping that show’s assembled coach-potatoes pick up the phone, turn down the telly and vote!
The Queen of Pop
When Queen appeared on X Factor alongside American Idol nobody Adam Lambert earlier in the series, viewers at home would have been forgiven for thinking a major pop injustice had been done.
After all, anyone who tuned in to see Andrea perform the group’s classic hit “Somebody to Love” must have been left feeling like the second coming of Freddy Mercury had finally been discovered.
And should the Italian fail to win next weekend, we would strongly suggest that Brian May and Roger Taylor give the Pugfather a call and maybe “accidentally” lose Lambert’s number in the process…
Evil forces have been at work on the X Factor recently, attempting to convince the public that Fleur East and Ben Haenow are superior to Andrea – they are not.
From getting Fleur to perform a song that has yet to be released to Cheryl Cole not bothering to judge Ben’s singing ability and instead stating he is “a really nice guy” in a response that would have seen Louis Walsh crucified, something is going on.
But despite their best efforts – getting Andrea to dress like a member of the Lighthouse Family for “O Holy Night” and later having him sing a tune best remembered for the image of Miley Cyrus starkers atop a wrecking ball – the Italian was again the most consistent singer last week.
With Fleur a fine dancer but no Whitney Houston and Ben straining so hard for every note in his “rock” voice, there’s only one place our vote is going.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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