One-Sentence Synopsis: A British televivison singing competition containing celebrity judge panel, that contests aspiring singers drawn from public auditions, seaching for people who have the “X Factor”, which refers to the undefinable “something” that makes for star quality.

Channel: ITV in the UK and TV3 in Ireland

Run Length: 4 September 2004 – present, with each episode approximatly lasting around 60–120 minutes

No. of episodes: Usually around 167 episodes

In The XFactor there are initial televised auditions to start the show off,  where contestants sing in front of the judges – currently Simon Cowell, Louis Walsh , Cheryl Cole and Dannii Minogue, with the hope of passing onto the next round which is the “boot camp” round. But, in conjuction to this, which as shown in Charlie Brooker’s screenwipe video below, these preliminary auditions are “what you see is what happened… it’s raw and we don’t censor” according to Simon Cowell who defended the show, so the judges presumably sat through the how many thousands of sing songs from every candidate, so is it really a “reality” show if it’ been edited, cut and whatever with the use of today’s technologies?

After a further selection process, the judges are each given a category to mentor and the chosen finalists then progress to the final phase of the competition, during which the public vote for their favourite act following weekly live performances by the contestants. So far in the reality Tv series there have been six winners to date: Steve Brookstein, Shayne Ward, Leona Lewis, Leon Jackson, Alexandra Burke and Joe McElderry; the winning contestant’s single is released in time for the end of year chart battle for the UK’s christmas number one’s spot, a spot which it gained in four successive years from 2005 to 2008. As in 2009 rage against the machine won the battle for number one, with the aid of a facebook group supporting the band.


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