Well done British public, you can be my friends again. The Sony BMG people are working fast, with a website up already which tells fans not only where and when to find Shayne on TV and radio this week, but also exactly where he will be recording said shows, giving exact addresses! I guess they want lots of people to go so they can call it “Shayne Mania”, but really they’re just attracting scary stalker types for whom seeing him on telly non-stop for the next few days will not be enough.

I am quite excited about Shayne winning but I’m not sure if this will be the general opinion, so I’m going to explain why. When the X Factor series began, I wrote a Popping The Question post about whether we can ever have another reality TV star who will become a great pop artist in their own right. I feel that with Shayne we have the best chance of this since Popstars: The Rivals (a programme which, incidentally, Shayne was in – there’s even a photo of him in the official book if you have it, pg20). There are many directions he can take, and I can’t think of one that would ruin him. He is a fantastic popstar because can be changed into whatever is currently in fashion. He can be the British Justin, a one-man Backstreet Boys, even placing him as the new Robbie Williams couldn’t go terribly wrong as long as they give him good songs, and the best thing about Shayne is that he is over-qualified for this position, being an excellent singer. He’s already been on the cover of Heat and Sneak and all their gossipy pals, which is exactly where the perfect popstar would be appearing.

It’s not certain that Shayne will be a success, but I do think he’s got a very good chance (certainly much better than any other contestant on this series), and it would be great if he could give the X Factor a better reputation, because it annoys me hugely when people write off one of the very few ways we have of getting new potentially ace pop stars these days. Whether or not it was these shows that made pop music so cool to hate in the first place, that’s how it is now and we have to take every opportunity to save it.

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