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The X Factor (2004– )

TV Series  |   |  Music, Reality-TV
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A British music competition to find new singing talent, contested by aspiring singers drawn from public auditions.

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Series cast summary:
Louis Walsh ...
 Himself - Judge (325 episodes, 2004-2014)
 Himself - Judge / ... (266 episodes, 2004-2015)
 Himself - Presenter (246 episodes, 2007-2014)
Peter Dickson ...
 Himself - Voice Over / ... (173 episodes, 2007-2015)
 Herself - Judge / ... (153 episodes, 2008-2015)
 Herself - Judge / ... (148 episodes, 2004-2013)


A British music competition to find new singing talent, contested by aspiring singers drawn from public auditions.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It's time to face the music


Music | Reality-TV

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

4 September 2004 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

The X Factor U.K.  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Series winners: Steve Brookstein (series 1), Shayne Ward (series 2), Leona Lewis (series 3), Leon Jackson (series 4), Alexandra Burke (series 5), Joe McElderry (series 6), Matt Cardle (series 7), Little Mix (series 8), James Arthur (series 9), Sam Bailey (series 10), Ben Haenow (series 11). See more »


Simon Cowell: [to a bad auditionee] You couldn't win this competition even if you were the only one in it!
See more »


Referenced in Huffpost Live: Noel Gallagher LIVE (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

Exploitative Time-Wasting Drivel
18 December 2006 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

It is hard to believe that BBC and ITV are not in partnership with pubs across the country to keep people out of their home with the same repetitive Saturday night "entertainment." At least the BBC is trying original drama even if it is one load of rubbish after another (IMHO) instead of landing us with trashy reality shows like ITV1 (remember Celebrity Wrestling anyone?).

The judges themselves are a joke. What qualifications does Sharon Osbourne have to give opinions on other people's singing? Anybody? At least Simon Cowell and Louis Walsh have a number of successful groups to their name before this. All three act like small bullying children bickering over each other's comments and the so-called "mind-games" are just a joke. They seem more interested in doing down the groups mentored by another judge or the other judges themselves than doing anything with their group. All this is presented by Kate Thornton. Has anybody told her she has been equipped with a microphone so there is no need to SHOUT ALL THE TIME?

The X Factor is exploitative of both the contestants and the people at home who waste money texting into the show in voting. People who made fools of themselves at auditions - sometimes intentionally it seems can carve careers for themselves out of having a lack of talent. However these contestants are frequently more interesting than the chosen acts themselves. The tasteless bullying at the auditons inflicted by Cowell especially makes me disgusted that not only this is only shown, but it is defended as "cruel to be kind."

The judges frequently promise record deals to those who are thrown out before the final - why bother with the public if you are not going to listen to them? Just another cynical money-making exercise like allowing people to vote house-mates back into Big Brother when people have massively increased their phone bills to evict them.

I only watched this at all last year under protest due to living with several obsessed girls at university. Seeing it more recently while channel hopping I was disgusted to see a boy-band act, where it was clear that only one had any singing ability whatsoever followed by Sharon and Louis heaping undeserved praise upon them. If these were among the last 5-6 acts then I am glad I did not waste any more time watching the rest of the show. It hardly matters since the winner will no doubt disappear quickly enough when she discovers the ridiculous terms on her contract. Expect a few of the rejects polluting the charts for a some months to come as well a la "It's Chico Time". Not in my house.

32 of 40 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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