Paige Thomas vs. CeCe Frey. Jennel Garcia vs. Tara Simon. Carly Rose Sonenclar vs. Beatrice Miller. Willie Jones vs. Tate Stevens.
These were just a few of the spotlighted matchups of the hour on The X Factor's final boot camp episode, during which the remaining contestants (60 acts in all) squared off against each other in the duel round—the last stop before 24 acts get good news at the judges' homes and the rest get their hearts broken.
Not surprisingly, producers waited till the last minute to show us the hyped rematch between roommates Paige and CeCe, who both took on and impressed with "I Will Always Love You" on last night's show. CeCe even added additional leopard spots to her leg for the occasion!
Right off the bat, sadly, it was evident that Paige did not want to perform CeCe's suggestion, OneRepublic's "Secrets." The Rihanna-resembling singer mumbled the first line and then promptly forgot the lyrics.
Luckily for Paige, CeCe wasn't particularly great, either. It's anybody's game—and there's always the chance that the judges will keep both.
And Paige wasn't alone in the lyric-flubbing department: LaTasha Robinson had a full-on meltdown after promising to wipe the floor with duel partner Jillian Jensen, who graciously told the judges afterward that LaTasha really did have her game together in rehearsal.
Neither Jessie Bryant nor Freddie Combs, the 40-year-old minister who after his first audition vowed to lose enough weight to be able to perform standing up on The X Factor, managed to remember enough words to what we think was supposed to be "Up on the Roof" to get anywhere.
And Vino Alan, he of the partly tattooed face, thought he had "just f--ked up serious," enough to throw his hat down on the stage. But the judges thought he was great with "What's Going On," as did Vino's roomie and duel partner David Correy (he of the tattooed everything else).
Similarly difficult decisions will have to be made between precocious 13-year-olds Carly Rose Sonenclar and Beatrice Miller, whose sweet renditions of "Pumped Up Kicks" were almost creepy, considering the subject matter; and Reed Dening, 13, and Brandon Hassan, 16, who also covered "Secrets" but did a better job than their female counterparts.
Other disappointments included gotta-see-him-to-believe-him country singer Willie Jones, who forgot the words to "Nobody Knows," which happened to be his opponent Tate Stevens' song choice.
Also brought down by her competitor's choice was Jennel Garcia, who went with the more dramatic Tara Simon's choice of "Landslide." We were getting older, too, listening to all of Tara's needless riffs during the deceptively simple Fleetwood Mac classic.
"Jennel was a washed-up, afraid little person," Simon said mournfully after the 18-year-old's timid performance.
Meanwhile, all has been said and sung, and the results will be in next week!
Who do you think belongs in the top 24? Sound off in the comments!
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