We're nearly at live shows stage! Yes, with just one week to go until the show hits the lives, it's crunch time for each of the judges as they select the three acts they wish to mentor in live shows. With 25 acts through to Judges Houses, 13 will be going home without a place in the lives whilst 12 acts will make the all important stage where the public get a say! Will favourites such as Ella Henderson, Jahmene Douglas, Lucy Spraggan and Carolynne Poole manage to make it through?

Recap and videos after the JUMP ...

Top 25

Boys - Nicole
  1. Rylan Clark
  2. Jahmene Douglas 
  3. Adam Burridge
  4. James Arthur
  5. Starboy Nathan (Nathan Fagan-Gayle)
  6. Jake Quickenden

Girls -Tulisa
  1. Lucy Spraggan
  2. Ella Henderson
  3. Amy Mottram
  4. Leanne Robinson
  5. Jade Collins
  6. Jade Ellis
 Overs - Gary
  1. Carolynne Poole
  2. Christopher Maloney
  3. Melanie Masson
  4. Nicola Marie
  5. Kye Sones
  6. Brad Shackleton
Groups - Louis
  1. Poisonous Twin
  2. GMD3
  3. MK1
  4. Union J (Triple J + George Shelley)
  5. Mitsotu
  6. Duke
  7. Times Red 

Louis has his acts in Las Vegas where his seven groups (as Times Red and the newly formed Union J have replaced Rough Copy) will be performing for himself and nobody's favourite bitter old woman who used to be a judge Sharon Osbourne is joining him to give her words of err... advice!

Times Red who have been given a second chance are the first to perform for the judges. They're singing 'Aint No Sunshine' with the normal set-up of acoustic guitar and beatbox. They're probably the group who I have done the biggest U-Turn on as I wasn't a big fan of their audition but I really enjoyed them at Bootcamp and once again, I think their performance is very good. They're delivering a very well-rounded performance. They do a mash-up with 'Let's Get It Started' and it's fantastic, really good start. Louis and Sharon are impressed but both of them believe that there is a lot of work to be done. (Video)

Mitsotu are also quite good at their performance of 'Hey Ya' by OutKast but I feel like they're overshadowed by more interesting groups such as MK1. (Video)

Female 'Jedward' Poisonous Twin are the next group to perform for Louis and Sharon. There's something really endearing about these two and I like how Stephanie is a strong singer and the other one can rap well. No rapping today as they perform 'Freak Like Me'. Their harmonies are slightly off but saying as Louis needs a novelty act every year or so it seems, I expect these two to be through. (Video)

Beatboxing trio Duke are performing Michael Jackson's 'The Way You Make Me Feel'. One of them does a rather weird beatbox which sounds a little bit like a didgery doo as Sharon suggests. They're very 'today' if today means throwing random sounds that are reminiscent of something you might hear when your electrical devices malfunction into the middle of a performance (Video

One of my favourite groups MK1 are up next, having to sit for their performance because the guy is in crutches after a football injury. Their performance of 'Just Be Good To Me' by Professor Green is really good and I suspect that they could also be heading for the live shows although I fear that the public might find them overconfident and they may become hate figures. (Video)

And finally, it's the battle of the boybands as comeback kids Union J who were previously 'Triple J' but added a fourth member in George Shelley are hoping to make the Top 12 as are GMD3. Union J do a fantastic rendition of 'Call Me Maybe' by Carly Rae Jepsen, they're just getting stronger and stronger. (Video) GMD3's rendition of 'God Blessed The Broken Road' on the other hand is nothing special, their harmonies are very flat. I know which group should make the live shows but knowing Louis, it'll be GMD3. (Video)


Heading to St. Lucia are the Girls who are being mentored by Tulisa and her guest helper Tinie Tempah. Everyone looks excited apart from Tinie himself who looks like he wants to fall asleep.

Amy Mottram is the first to perform for her mentor and Tinie. The Essex teenager has previously impressed the judges with her surprisingly soulful voice and she's hoping to deliver today with her performance of 'Read All About It Part. III' by Emeli Sandé. It's good but it's not as good as the original and compared to her audition, it does feel a bit lacklustre. Amy is good but I think she's in the most competitive category so might miss out on a place in the lives. (Video)

Mum of one Jade Ellis is the next person to perform for her place in the lives. Jade is one of my favourites, she has a really unique voice and a sweet personality and I think she is the exact type of artist that Tulisa will excel with. Her performance of 'Stand By Me' more than makes up for her disappointing bootcamp solo and she really connects with Tulisa. Jade has to make the lives. (Video)

Soulful singer Leanne Robinson is only shown for a frankly miniscule amount of time and we can just about hear her rendition of 'Hurt' by Christina Aguilera because they play her talking over it. Tinie uses a wavy hand to symbolize her performance, I disagree, I thought it was great but we can safely assume that Leanne stands no chance unless as Tulisa's wildcard candidate.  (Video)

Belfast teenager Jade Collins has come along quite a bit in the competition and her performance of 'It's Must Have Ben Love' by Roxette is a lot better than her audition but I don't see her making the lives myself. (Video) Massively hyped Lucy Spraggan takes a risk by singing 'I Will Always Love You', a risk which doesn't pay off in my opinion. Her original songs are very good but her voice holds her back and in my opinion, it grates when she is singing other people's songs, how will she cope with the lives? (Video)

Finally for the Girls is Ella Henderson, the stand-out of her category after two incredible performances, her audition where she sang an original track and her bootcamp solo when she performed 'Believe', a performance which led to original singer Cher actually tweeting that it made her cry (in a good way). Her performance of 'I Won't Give Up' by Jason Mraz is pretty brilliant, maybe a tad dull but unless we have another Gamu moment, I don't see Ella being rejected at Judge's Houses. (Video)

Heading to Dubai with mentor Nicole Scherzinger and guest helper Ne-Yo are the Boys. Nicole is really excited to mentor the Boys because she believes there is a lot of talent in the category.

First up is James Arthur who I have been a fan of since his incredible audition where he gave his own rendition of Tulisa's 'Young'. His rendition of 'I Can't Make You Love Me' isn't as good as his audition but then again, what is? However, it still is a great performance and I will be peeved if he isn't sent through to the live shows by Nicole. (Video)

Up next is the Essex lad who should have went home at Bootcamp, it's Rylan Clark! His performance of 'We Found Love' by Rihanna is better than I expected it to be but he's still easily the weakest vocalist in the competition and his voice is so generic, his personality so overpowering, his desire for fame so overwhelming that I just really don't like him. Also, why is he dressed up as a member of the sith? (Video

The next act Jake Quickenden gets quite emotional in his VT because he has recently found out that his brother who is terminally ill is getting worse. His brother was at his audition and now Jake is determined to make the lives for him. Tragically, since Judge's Houses were filmed, his brother passed away so condolences with Jake and the rest of his family. His rendition of 'Back For Good' by Take That is okay though I as a rule don't really like that song and I feel like he could have performed it better, I don't know if Jake will make lives, there are a couple of others who could nab a spot. (Video

Nathan Fagan Gayle aka 'Starboy Nathan' performs an underwhelming rendition of Ne-Yo's hit 'Beautiful Monster'. I know that he's already had success and maybe that's what is putting me off him but I just don't think he's overly good, he hits lots of bum notes. (Video) One of my favourites Adam Burridge makes 'SOS' by Abba his own and I really like his intense style and dark, unique vocals. With that said, I don't know if Nicole will want to take someone who is so different through. (Video)

Last of the Boys category is arguably the one people seem to be most behind, it's nervous Jahmene Douglas. Jahmene gave a very good rendition of 'At Last' at auditions but after two disappointing bootcamp performances, Jahmene knows that he has to conquer his nerves and really deliver today or he could be going home. He still doesn't better his audition with 'Titanium' but it's certainly way better than anything he performed during bootcamp and knowing how much Nicole loved his first audition, I suspect that Jahmene is another name to add to the 'Definitely Through' list. (Video)


The Overs are staying in England for Judge's Houses as they join Gary at a very posh stately home. Helping him to select the three acts to take through to live shows is former judge and Girls Aloud member Cheryl Cole. Cheryl wasn't a great judge in her own time on the show bar in the first year in my opinion so let's hope that she's better as a helper.

Returnee Carolynne Poole is up first, she has it all to play for with this performance because she had failed IVF treatment, was rejected by Louis at his Judge's Houses and cracks started to appear in her marriage. She tells Gary and Cheryl that she was gutted when she was rejected last year, Cheryl asks who her mentor was and tells her that she would have been gutted too when she says that it was Louis. She delivers an incredible rendition of 'When You Say Nothing At All' both on a vocal level and on an emotional level. (Video

Up next is Nicola Marie who is incredibly nervous today because Gary was the only judge who gave her a 'No' at auditions and she feels like she stands no chance of getting through with him as her mentor. However, he takes her aside and tells her not to come out like she has already been rejected and that he will base his decision purely on today's performance. Her unique arrangement of 'Tragedy' is actually really interesting and I like her vocals on it, she's certainly in with a shot I think. (Video

Brad Shackleton has barely been shown at all in the stages so far so I think we can already rule him out of making lives. His performance of 'The Final Countdown' is nothing to write home about, I can't see him going to the live shows. (Video) One of my favourites, mother of two and part-time fairy Melanie Masson is also hoping to impress Gary with her rendition of 'Every Time You Go Away' and yet again, she's doing a great job. What I love is although she has powerful vocals, she can also handle the small, subtle parts of the song incredibly well, she is fantastic and a shoe-in for the live shows surely? (Video)

Chimney sweep Kye Sones had a great first audition with his mash-up of 'RIP' by Rita Ora which really impressed the lady herself who was a guest judge. His bootcamp performance of 'I Can't Make You Love Me' was another stand-out for him but he's going back to the modern songs for his Judge's Houses performance as he sings 'Payphone' by Maroon 5. It's okay, there are quite a few moments where he's out of tune though and the final note is disappointing. With that said, I think Kye may still make the lives. (Video

Last of the night is Christopher Maloney who is really nervous again. For some reason, maybe because it has came out that he was a cruise ship performer, not the undiscovered talent he'd been depicted as, I find his nerves a little bit dubious, I don't know there's something insincere about him in my opinion. His rendition of 'All Out Of Love' reminds me of exactly why I don't like his voice, it's shouty, lacking any real emotion and very old-fashioned, I don't want Christopher making the lives over more deserving acts. (Video)


Well in terms of the Groups, I think it's quite hard to predict what Louis will look for and who Louis will pick but I reckon as a novelty act, reminiscent of Jedward but female, Poisonous Twins are likely to make the live shows. MK1 also seem like a safe bet as there hasn't really been anybody like them before. I wouldn't be surprised if both young boybands go through but saying as there is only one more spot, I'll say that GMD3 will be the final group with Union J becoming the wildcard candidates.

Tulisa has a tough task on her hands, picking from her six girls won't be easy but we can most probably expect that Ella Henderson is a safe bet for the live shows, there's no way Tulisa would let her go. Lucy Spraggan is another likelihood although personally I don't get the big deal with her, I think she's been rather average so far. Of the other four, I think Jade Ellis is probably most likely to secure a spot in the live shows as she gave a great performance and Tulisa appears to have really formed a connection with her. The wildcard? Well, much as I love her and think Tulisa should choose her despite the shocking treatment she has received at the hands of the editors, I don't see Leanne making it sadly. Essex teenager Amy Mottram is my tip for wildcard.

The Boys category is once again pretty average talent wise, don't get me wrong there is some exceptional talent but there is also some rather average talent. I think we can safely assume that Jahmene Douglas will be in the final three of his category, Nicole loves him and there's no way she would reject him at Judge's Houses. Another surefire finalist is James Arthur who wowed the judges at auditions and bootcamp and gave a great performance last night to boot. Unfortunately, I can't see a Top 12 without Rylan Clark as they need their token public hate figure and Rylan fills that role. I don't think Nathan or Jake have been shown enough to fulfill the last spot as wildcard candidate so I reckon Adam Burridge is the likely candidate for the wildcard.

Finally, the strongest category, the Overs which I believe is likely to include the winner this year. I also believe it's the most obvious in terms of three acts in the live shows and the wildcard. Carolynne Poole is definitely going to make the live shows, there's no way Gary would turn her down this year after Louis made that mistake last series. Kye Sones despite his disappointing performance last night is still easily the strongest male over so I don't see Gary wanting to lose him. The other act completing the finalists for their category is bound to be Melanie Masson who really hasn't put a foot wrong in this contest. And the wildcard is fairly obviously going to be Christopher Maloney.

Top 12 + Wildcard Candidates

Boys - Nicole
  1. Rylan Clark
  2. Jahmene Douglas 
  3. James Arthur
  4.  Adam Burridge - Wildcard

Girls -Tulisa
  1. Lucy Spraggan
  2. Ella Henderson
  3. Jade Ellis  
  4. Amy Mottram - Wildcard
 Overs - Gary
  1. Carolynne Poole
  2. Melanie Masson
  3. Kye Sones
  4. Christopher Maloney - Wildcard
Groups - Louis
  1. GMD3
  2. MK1
  3. Union J (Triple J + George Shelley)
  4. Times Red - Wildcard

The Top 12 is very disappointing to be honest, Louis has made a big blunder putting two very similar boybands through, Poisonous Twin should have took GMD3's place with Times Red taking the wildcard position. I do wish that Tulisa had chosen Leanne in some way but it's no surprise, the Girls Line-Up is like the Overs in being unsurprising yet probably fair enough. The Overs are very strong bar the wildcard candidate Christopher Maloney who I'm hoping won't make lives. Finally, the Boys category is fine but there is nothing else to say other than Rylan better go early.
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