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The X Factor 2018 arena auditions recap: All the results from episode one

Who did the judges put through in the first week?

The X Factor 2018 finally hit our screens tonight with the first arena auditions, featuring the sweet taste of Juicy Fruit and a floor-filling performance from a 90s dance diva.


It’s all change on the ITV talent contest this year as head judge Simon Cowell is joined by three new sidekicks.

Pop superstar Robbie Williams and his wife Ayda have become the first husband-and-wife duo to sit on the panel.

Meanwhile, One Direction star Louis Tomlinson is the first former contestant ever to become a full-time judge.

The format has also undergone tweaks, with bosses bidding farewell to the rooms and filming the auditions exclusively in arenas.

Tonight viewers got their first taste of the talent on offer, including a Robbie superfan and a Pop Idol reject hoping to finally win over Simon.

Here’s our full round-up of all the results…


The Nos

No Labels (No) – The very first act to appear on this year’s series was No Labels, a.k.a. Ollie, Jake, Jordan and Ben. The quartet feel there’s currently a “really big gap” in the market for boybands, and wanted to prove themselves to Louis and Robbie, members of two of the biggest boybands ever. Unfortunately, their vocals didn’t live up to their well-rehearsed dance moves, leaving Simon visibly cringing. “Everything I’ve just seen is everything we tried to avoid in One Direction,” remarked Louis. “I think there should be an identity, and you have no identity,” added Robbie.

Ross Alexander (No) – Ross instantly grabbed the arena’s attention when he ‘hacked’ in to the giant screen on stage. He soon emerged wearing a ridiculously large head dress, but his voice didn’t live up to the lavish staging. “When you bring such a massive production, we’re expecting pure entertainment, and we just never really got there,” Louis observed. “Unfortunately, the least interesting thing about it was your singing,” noted Ayda.

Livia And The Elementals.
Livia And The Elementals

Livia & The Elementals (No) – Songwriter Livia brought along The Elementals, her troupe of backing dancers, in a bid to impress the judges. However, the tactic backfired miserably, as her try-out was branded “the most unenthusiastic performance I’ve ever seen” by Simon. “It was a bit like Cirque de No Way,” joked Robbie.

The Yesses

Danny Tetley (4 yesses) – Simon faced a blast from his past when cheeky chappy Danny took to the X Factor stage – almost two decades after the media mogul first rejected him on Pop Idol. Kicking off what he described as his “World Cup final”, Danny stunned the room by performing Jennifer Hudson’s ‘And I Am Telling You’, and this time he won Simon’s seal of approval. “I think I remember saying to you seventeen years ago, you should come back in seventeen years’ time,” he joked. “I could not be more thrilled for you, I mean that.”

Miss Understood.

Misunderstood (4 yesses) – Original songs are all the rage on The X Factor after Rak-su romped to victory last year, and the first self-penned track of 2018 didn’t disappoint. Jeff and Stefan – a.k.a. duo Misunderstood – had the crowd on their feet with ‘Juicy Fruit’, a song about “celebrating the big curves, the juicy parts of someone’s body”. “That was off the chain! That was epic, sick, cool, that was incredible!” exclaimed Ayda. “That song was incredible, I can hear that on the radio. You’re born to do this lads,” added Robbie.

Kezia Povey and Charlotte Lee (Yes, as part of a new girl band) – One Direction was famously formed from five rejected X Factor soloists, and it seems that old trope is coming back in to play after two hopefuls in the Girls category were given yesses, but not on their own.

Kezia Povey

The judges weren’t quite sure what to make of 15-year-old Kezia’s performance of Calum Scott’s ‘You Are The Reason’. Although Robbie felt she doesn’t have “enough experience for the big league”, he did spot an opportunity, adding: “What I will say is that you should have the opportunity to hide in public. You should be put in to a girl band and be given the opportunity to grow.”

Charlotte, 17, was then only halfway through her rendition of P!nk’s ‘What About Us’ when the judges came to the same conclusion for her. “Girl band?” suggested Louis. “100 percent,” replied Simon. The music supremo then told her: “I don’t think your voice is strong enough, you should be in a group. We will be seeing you again, but not as a solo artist.”

Molly Scott

Molly Scott (4 yesses) – While Molly is a similar age to the two acts before her, she escaped a similar fate. She belted out her Nan’s favourite song, James Brown’s ‘It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World’, winning a standing ovation from the audience – and convincing the panel she’s good enough to go it alone. “Normally at this point, for a 16-year-old girl, I’d be saying, I think you should go into a girlband. I’m not gonna say that for you, because you’re ready for this,” commented Robbie. “It’s officially a woman’s world, I think you have a phenomenal voice,” added Ayda.

Janice Robinson (4 yesses) – The stand-out moment in episode one came courtesy of 90s dance diva Janice Robinson, the original frontwoman of Livin’ Joy. She brought the roof down at the SSE Arena with the group’s number one single, ‘Dreamer’, which had Dermot and the production staff backstage dancing along. “You are not just The X Factor, you are every single letter in the alphabet factor!” grinned Ayda. Simon was so thrilled that he said Janice would have got his Golden Buzzer, had it been Britain’s Got Talent.

Janice Robinson.
Janice Robinson

Meanwhile, Robbie was left totally starstruck. “Your voice and your song has been a major part of the soundtrack of my life,” he explained. “I was transported to a person that I used to be, they were incredible times for me. I just had an incredibly special moment right here on stage.”

Andy Hofton (4 yesses) – Andy was ecstatic to be given a shot on The X Factor stage, as it meant he got to perform for his idol Robbie. He initially performed ‘Castle of Love’, an original work he sent to Gary Barlow twenty years ago, which went ignored. “You’d have got a response from me,” smirked Robbie. However, Simon took an instant disliking to the song and halted the audition.


Andy pressed ahead with his second choice, Robbie’s classic hit ‘Angels’ – and his dreams came true when the man himself joined him on stage to sing along. “I really enjoyed that, you put your heart and soul in to that,” said Louis, while Simon called it one of his “favourite auditions”.

The X Factor continues tomorrow night at 8.00pm on ITV with the second round of auditions.