Only once in the history of the X Factor has a contestant found themselves in a sing off for survival in three consecutive weeks.
That contestant was Katie Waissel in series 7 back in 2010 and she survived on each occasion – first being saved at the expense of girl group Belle Amie, then fellow female Treyc Cohen and finally Aiden Grimshaw in week six. It is worth pointing out that she also survived a sing off in the opening live show.
Katie enjoyed a change of fortune in week seven when ending up ranking second in the vote as the public seemingly felt sorry for her situation, but normal business was soon restored in week eight as she was eliminated.
There is a strong possibility in the current series that for a second time a contestant will find themselves singing for survival in three straight weeks.
Saara Aalto has already been kept in ahead of Bratavio and Freddy Parker and there is little to suggest that she will enjoy a rise in popularity in Divas week.
The production of the show has appeared to go above and beyond in highlighting that the Finnish musician is a foreign act in the way she has appeared in the live-show videos and this is clearly not attracting votes.
The fact that mentor Sharon Osbourne couldn’t remember her name last week does little to go against any opinion that she is a forgettable act either.
Meanwhile, her song “choice” for Divas Week is one that has a track record for not striking a chord with the public.
Saara is singing It’s Oh So Quiet by Icelandic act Bjork, which only just helped Kitty Brucknell escape the sing off in the second week of the 2011 series, despite arguably being the best performance in that live show and doing so from the so-called pimp slot by going on last.
The 1/3 that Saara finds herself in the bottom two of the vote again is incredibly tough to oppose, but the 10/11 that she is the third act eliminated is in no way a certainty.
Given that Sharon’s act is perhaps the strongest singer in the competition, it can be justified that she is saved in the sing off against anyone. With her vote under control, there is a conspiracy theory that it may be decided by the show to eliminate her bottom-two rival if they are seen as more of a threat to spoiling the plot.
Producers will already have their plan as to which acts reach the final and if one of the big dangers to the “chosen ones” ends up in a sing off, it makes sense to eliminate them now when the opportunity arises.
Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing