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The X Factor (UK series 6)

The X Factor
Series 6
Broadcast from 22 August 2009 – 13 December 2009
Judges Louis Walsh
Simon Cowell
Dannii Minogue
Presenter(s) Dermot O'Leary (ITV1)
Co-presenter(s) Holly Willoughby (ITV2)
Broadcaster ITV
ITV2 (The Xtra Factor)
Joe McElderry
Origin South Shields, England
Song "The Climb"
Genre(s) Pop, operatic pop, R&B
Olly Murs

The X Factor is a British television music competition to find new singing talent. The sixth series started on ITV on 22 August 2009 and was won by Joe McElderry on 13 December 2009.[1] Cheryl emerged as the winning mentor for the second consecutive year, the first time in the show's history that a mentor has won back-to-back series.[2] The show was presented by Dermot O'Leary, with spin-off show The Xtra Factor presented by Holly Willoughby on ITV2. McElderry's winner's single was a cover version of Miley Cyrus's "The Climb".[3] Public auditions by aspiring singers began in June 2009 and were held in five cities across the UK. Simon Cowell, Louis Walsh, Dannii Minogue and Cheryl returned as judges. For the first time, auditions were held in front of a live audience, due to. Following initial auditions, the "bootcamp" stage took place in August 2009, where the number of contestants was narrowed down to 24. The 24 contestants were split into their categories, Boys, Girls, Over 25s and Groups, and given a judge to mentor them at the "judges' houses" stage and throughout the finals.

During "judges' houses", the 24 acts were reduced to twelve, who went on to the live finals, with one act being eliminated each week by a combination of public vote and judges' decision until a winner was found. The live shows started on 10 October 2009. The acts performed every Saturday night with the results announced on Sundays. This was change of format from previous series in which the results were announced later on the Saturday evening.


  • Judges, presenters and other personnel 1
  • Selection process 2
    • Auditions 2.1
    • Bootcamp 2.2
    • Judges' houses 2.3
  • Finalists and categories 3
  • Live shows 4
    • Musical guests 4.1
    • Results summary 4.2
    • Live show details 4.3
      • Week 1 (10/11 October) 4.3.1
      • Week 2 (17/18 October) 4.3.2
      • Week 3 (24/25 October) 4.3.3
      • Week 4 (31 October/1 November) 4.3.4
      • Week 5 (7/8 November) 4.3.5
      • Week 6 (14/15 November) 4.3.6
      • Week 7 (21/22 November) 4.3.7
      • Week 8 (28/29 November) 4.3.8
      • Week 9: Semi-final (5/6 December) 4.3.9
      • Week 10: Final (12/13 December) 4.3.10
  • Sponsors 5
  • Reception 6
    • Ratings 6.1
    • Controversy and criticism 6.2
  • References 7
  • External links 8

Judges, presenters and other personnel

During series 5, it was rumoured that Dannii Minogue would not return as a judge for series 6.[4] Spice Girls singer Victoria Beckham was reported as a replacement for Minogue.[5] In June 2009, however, it was confirmed that Simon Cowell, Louis Walsh, Minogue and Cheryl would all return as judges for series 6.[6] Walsh missed the first results show due to Boyzone member Stephen Gateley's sudden death and missed the second week due to attending Gateley's funeral.

Dermot O'Leary returned to present the main show on ITV, while Holly Willoughby returned as presenter on The Xtra Factor on ITV2. Brian Friedman returned to the show as creative director and Yvie Burnett returned as vocal coach.

Selection process


Cities that auditions were held in.

Auditions were held during June and July 2009 across five cities: London (Excel Centre, 22-25 June), Birmingham (ICC, 29-30 June), Manchester (Manchester Central, 3-5 July), Cardiff (International Arena, 9 July) and Glasgow (Braehead Arena, 12 July).[7][8][9][10][11] In a change to previous series, auditions were held in front of a live audience due to the success of a similar system on Britain's Got Talent.[12][13] However, Glaswegian auditionees had already been judged using the old format, meaning that they had to apply again, as their initial audition was void.[14]


As with the auditions, the "Bootcamp" selection stage was filmed in front of a live audience. Filming took place on 1 August at the HMV Hammersmith Apollo.[15] Approximately 200 acts attended bootcamp. They were initially split into groups of three, and judges gave instant decisions on who would leave based on the group performances, bringing the number of acts down to 100. The judges then cut the number of acts down to 50. Following a further set of auditions, the number of contestants was narrowed to 24. Originally, the group Trucolorz were chosen by the judges for the final 24 but were disqualified due to one of the group's members being too young for the show, and they were replaced by Harmony Hood.[16][17]

The contestants were then split into the usual four categories before the judges discovered which category they would mentor for the rest of the competition. The Boys (16–24) were mentored by Cheryl, Minogue had the Girls (16–24), Cowell mentored the Over 25s, and Walsh took charge of the Groups.

Judges' houses

Each judge had help from a guest judge during the "Judges' houses" stage. Will Young assisted Cole in Marrakech, Morocco, Minogue had help from her sister Kylie Minogue in Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai,[18] Boyzone singer Ronan Keating helped Walsh near Lake Como in Italy, and Cowell had help from Sinitta in Los Angeles.[19] At Judges' Houses, each act sang for their respective judge, and each judge and their guest eliminated three acts, leaving 12 acts to perform in the live shows.

Summary of judges' houses
Judge Category Location Assistant Contestants eliminated
Cole Boys Marrakech Will Young Ethan Boroian, Daniel Fox, Duane Lamonte
Cowell Over 25s Los Angeles Sinitta Treyc Cohen, Nicole Lawrence, Daniel Pearce
Minogue Girls Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai Kylie Minogue Nicole Jackson, Stacey McClean, Despina Pilavakis
Walsh Groups Lake Como, Italy Ronan Keating De-Tour, Harmony Hood, Project A

Finalists and categories

The final 12 acts were confirmed as follows:


     – Winner
     – Runner-up
     – Third place
Category (mentor) Acts
Boys (Cole) Lloyd Daniels Rikki Loney Joe McElderry
Girls (Minogue) Rachel Adedeji Lucie Jones Stacey Solomon
Over 25s (Cowell) Jamie Archer Danyl Johnson Olly Murs
Groups (Walsh) John & Edward Kandy Rain Miss Frank

Live shows

The live shows began on 10 October 2009, and continued through to the finale on 12 December 2009. For this series the results shows were on Sunday nights instead of Saturdays as they were for the first five series. In another change to the format of previous years, the remaining finalists performed a song as a group at the start of each results show. As previously, each week had a different song theme. Each act performed one song on the Saturday night show and the results were announced on the Sunday. Beginning with week 8 of the live shows, with five acts remaining, each contestant would sing two songs. Up to week 8, the two acts with the fewest public votes were in the bottom two and would sing again in the "final showdown". The songs they performed in the bottom two were of their own choice and did not necessarily follow that week's theme. The four judges then each chose one act from the bottom two that they wanted to be eliminated from the show. If each act received an equal number of judges' votes, the result was deadlocked and the act with the fewest public votes was eliminated. From week 8 onwards, there was no bottom two and the act with the fewest votes was eliminated. In a change to the format of previous years, the remaining finalists performed a song as a group at the start of each results show.

Musical guests

During each results show, either one or two guest artists would perform. Paul McCartney (Sunday show). In some weeks, the guest performers also mentored the acts in the run-up to that week's live show.

The choice of musical guests on The X Factor live shows had a significant impact on the UK Singles Chart. Of the seven singles that made number one from 18 October to 19 December, six of them had done so after having been performed on an X Factor live show the previous weekend. They were, in order: "Bad Boys" by Alexandra Burke, "Fight for This Love" by Cheryl, "Everybody in Love" by JLS, "Meet Me Halfway" by the Black Eyed Peas, "You Are Not Alone" by the finalists and "Bad Romance" by Lady Gaga. This impact was noted by several commentators. After "Bad Romance" became the sixth song to reach Number One off the back of a performance on The X Factor, James Masterton of Yahoo! Music called the show "a guarantor of Number One hits".[31] Gennaro Castaldo of HMV remarked: "As soon as an artist goes on, almost overnight we see a surge in demand. Album sales can double or treble."[32] He added: "In an age when there are very few truly mass-audience platforms left, the X Factor has become pivotal for those labels and artists seeking to reach a family-based audience."[33] Paul Williams, editor of Music Week, explained: "The impact of the programme's incredible numbers on music sales is all too evident, with the top end of the singles and albums charts week after week since the current season began heavily dominated by whoever has been on the show."[34]

Results summary

Colour key
     – Contestant was in the bottom two and had to sing again in the final showdown
     – Contestant received the fewest public votes and was immediately eliminated (no final showdown)
     – Contestant received the most public votes
Weekly results per contestant[35]
Contestant Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10
Saturday Sunday
Joe McElderry 3rd
Olly Murs 7th
Stacey Solomon 2nd
(week 10)
Danyl Johnson 1st
(week 9)
Lloyd Daniels 6th
(week 8)
John & Edward 8th
(week 7)
Jamie Archer 5th
(week 6)
Lucie Jones 4th
(week 5)
Rachel Adedeji 11th
(week 4)
Miss Frank 9th
(week 3)
Rikki Loney 10th
(week 2)
Kandy Rain 12th
(week 1)
Final showdown Adedeji,
Kandy Rain
Miss Frank
John & Edward,
John & Edward,
No final showdown or judges' votes: results were based on public votes alone
Walsh's vote to eliminate Adedeji N/A Johnson Daniels Jones Archer Murs
Minogue's vote to eliminate Kandy Rain Loney Miss Frank Daniels John & Edward Daniels John & Edward
Cheryl's vote to eliminate Kandy Rain Adedeji Johnson Adedeji John & Edward Archer John & Edward
Cowell's vote to eliminate Adedeji Loney Miss Frank Adedeji Jones Daniels John & Edward
Eliminated Kandy Rain
2 of 4 votes
Rikki Loney
2 of 3 votes
Miss Frank
2 of 4 votes
Rachel Adedeji
2 of 4 votes
Lucie Jones
2 of 4 votes
Jamie Archer
2 of 4 votes
John & Edward
3 of 4 votes
Lloyd Daniels
to save
Danyl Johnson
to save
Stacey Solomon
to win
Olly Murs
to win
Reference(s) [36] [37] [38] [39] [40] [41] [42] [43] [44] [45]
  • ^1 On behalf of Walsh in his absence, a vote was cast against Rachel Adedeji on the assumption that he would try to save his own act, Kandy Rain.[36]
  • ^2 Walsh did not vote due to his absence, but confirmed on the following The Xtra Factor that he would have voted to eliminate Rikki Loney.[37]

Live show details

Week 1 (10/11 October)

Contestants' performances on the first live show
Act Order Song[46] Musical hero Result[36]
Rachel Adedeji 1 "Let Me Entertain You" Robbie Williams Bottom two
Kandy Rain 2 "Addicted to Love" Tina Turner Bottom two
Olly Murs 3 "She's the One" Robbie Williams Safe
Rikki Loney 4 "Back to Black" Amy Winehouse Safe
Stacey Solomon 5 "The Scientist" Coldplay Safe
Miss Frank 6 "Who's Lovin' You" The Jackson 5 Safe
Jamie Archer 7 "Get It On" T. Rex Safe
Lloyd Daniels 8 "Cry Me a River" Justin Timberlake Safe
Lucie Jones 9 "Footprints in the Sand" Leona Lewis Safe
John & Edward 10 "Rock DJ" Robbie Williams Safe
Joe McElderry 11 "No Regrets" Robbie Williams Safe
Danyl Johnson 12 "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" Jennifer Hudson Safe
Final showdown details
Rachel Adedeji 1 "Nobody Knows" Safe
Kandy Rain 2 "Fighter" Eliminated

Walsh was absent from the Sunday night results show due to the sudden death of Boyzone singer and close friend Stephen Gately, whom he managed.[47] Due to this, the show did not take its usual format; there were no lights and neither O'Leary nor the three other judges made an entrance. Instead, the show commenced with O'Leary already on stage and the judges already sitting at their desk. Both O'Leary and Cowell addressed the viewers and audience regarding Gately's death and Walsh's absence.[36] Following this, the show went on as normal with Minogue, Cowell and Cheryl present as judges.

Judges' votes to eliminate[36]
  • Walsh: Rachel Adedeji – as he was not present, his vote was automatically given to back his own act, Kandy Rain
  • Minogue: Kandy Rain – backed her own act, Rachel Adedeji
  • Cheryl: Kandy Rain – gave no reason
  • Cowell: Rachel Adedeji – said that Kandy Rain had not been given a "fair crack"[48]

With the acts in the bottom two receiving two votes each, the result was deadlocked and reverted to the earlier public vote. Kandy Rain were eliminated as the act with the fewest public votes.

Week 2 (17/18 October)

Walsh was absent from both shows this weekend, again due to Stephen Gately's death. The funeral took place on 17 October and Walsh paid his respects. This statement was released: "Due to recent tragic events, Louis Walsh will not be appearing on either the Saturday or Sunday live The X Factor shows this weekend as he is attending Stephen Gately's funeral. Louis has been in close contact with his acts throughout the week, although his opinions will not be represented in the show this weekend."[51]

Contestants' performances on the second live show
Act Order Song[49] Diva Result[37]
Lucie Jones 1 "How Will I Know" Whitney Houston Safe
Olly Murs 2 "A Fool in Love" Tina Turner Safe
Miss Frank 3 "All the Man That I Need" Whitney Houston Safe
Rachel Adedeji 4 "If I Were a Boy" Beyoncé Bottom two
Joe McElderry 5 "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" Whitney Houston Safe
Danyl Johnson 6 "I Didn't Know My Own Strength" Whitney Houston Safe
Lloyd Daniels 7 "Bleeding Love" Leona Lewis Safe
John & Edward 8 "Oops!... I Did It Again" Britney Spears Safe
Rikki Loney 9 "Respect" Aretha Franklin Bottom two
Jamie Archer 10 "Hurt" Christina Aguilera Safe
Stacey Solomon 11 "At Last" Etta James Safe
Final showdown details
Rachel Adedeji 1 "With or Without You" Safe
Rikki Loney 2 "Flying Without Wings" Eliminated

For the first time in the show's history, a contestant sang a cover version of a new song that had not yet even been sung live by the original recording artist.[52] Cowell's decision for Danyl Johnson to sing "I Didn't Know My Own Strength" garnered a disapproving reception from Houston, with Cowell saying that Johnson "didn't exactly get rave reviews [from Houston and Davis] in that room [for the masterclass]."[52][53]

Judges' votes to eliminate[37]
  • Walsh was not present for the results show, but according to a phone call on The Xtra Factor, he would have sent home Loney
  • Minogue: Rikki Loney – backed her own act, Rachel Adedeji
  • Cheryl: Rachel Adedeji – backed her own act, Rikki Loney
  • Cowell: Rikki Loney – based his choice on their last performances

Week 3 (24/25 October)

Contestants' performances on the third live show
Act Order Song[54] Result[38]
Olly Murs 1 "Bewitched" Safe
Lloyd Daniels 2 "Fly Me to the Moon" Safe
Miss Frank 3 "That's Life" Bottom two
Rachel Adedeji 4 "Proud Mary" Safe
Jamie Archer 5 "Angel of Harlem" Safe
Stacey Solomon 6 "When You Wish Upon a Star" Safe
Danyl Johnson 7 "Feeling Good" Bottom two
Joe McElderry 8 "Sway" Safe
Lucie Jones 9 "My Funny Valentine" Safe
John & Edward 10 "She Bangs" Safe
Final showdown details
Miss Frank 1 "Love Don't Live Here Anymore" Eliminated
Danyl Johnson 2 "With a Little Help from My Friends" Safe
Judges' votes to eliminate[38]
  • Walsh: Danyl Johnson – backed his own act, Miss Frank
  • Cowell: Miss Frank – backed his own act, Danyl Johnson
  • Minogue: Miss Frank – based on the final showdown performance
  • Cheryl: Danyl Johnson – was confused by the public's vote so put the decision back to the public

With the acts in the bottom two receiving two votes each, the result was deadlocked and reverted to the earlier public vote. Miss Frank were eliminated as the act with the fewest public votes.

Week 4 (31 October/1 November)

Contestants' performances on the fourth live show
Act Order Song[55] Result[39]
Joe McElderry 1 "Don't Stop Believin'" Safe
Lucie Jones 2 "Sweet Child o' Mine" Safe
Danyl Johnson 3 "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" Safe
Lloyd Daniels 4 "I Kissed a Girl" Bottom two
Stacey Solomon 5 "Somewhere Only We Know" Safe
Jamie Archer 6 "Rocks" Safe
Rachel Adedeji 7 "One" Bottom two
John & Edward 8 "We Will Rock You" Safe
Olly Murs 9 "Come Together" Safe
Final showdown details
Rachel Adedeji 1 "Stop Crying Your Heart Out" Eliminated
Lloyd Daniels 2 "You Are So Beautiful" Safe
Judges' votes to eliminate[39]
  • Minogue: Lloyd Daniels – backed her own act, Rachel Adedeji
  • Walsh: Lloyd Daniels – said Adedeji was better than Daniels
  • Cheryl: Rachel Adedeji – backed her own act, Lloyd Daniels
  • Cowell: Rachel Adedeji – gave no specific reason but said Adedeji was better than Daniels but felt that the public were not accepting her as this was her third time in the bottom two, and he also took into account Daniels' sore throat

With the acts in the bottom two receiving two votes each, the result was deadlocked and reverted to the earlier public vote. Adedeji was eliminated as the act with the fewest public votes.

Week 5 (7/8 November)

Contestants' performances on the fifth live show
Act Order Song[56] Film Result[40]
Stacey Solomon 1 "Son of a Preacher Man" Pulp Fiction Safe
Olly Murs 2 "Twist and Shout" Ferris Bueller's Day Off Safe
Lloyd Daniels 3 "Stand by Me" / "Beautiful Girls" Stand by Me Safe
Jamie Archer 4 "Crying" Gummo Safe
Lucie Jones 5 "This Is Me" Camp Rock Bottom two
Danyl Johnson 6 "Purple Rain" Purple Rain Safe
John & Edward 7 "Ghostbusters" Ghostbusters Bottom two
Joe McElderry 8 "Circle of Life" The Lion King Safe
Final showdown details
Lucie Jones 1 "One Moment in Time" Eliminated
John & Edward 2 "Rock DJ" Safe
Judges' votes to eliminate[40]
  • Walsh: Lucie Jones – backed his own act, John & Edward
  • Minogue: John & Edward – backed her own act, Lucie Jones
  • Cheryl: John & Edward – said Jones was the better singer
  • Cowell: Lucie Jones – decided to take it to deadlock after saying that neither of them could win

With the acts in the bottom two receiving two votes each, the result was deadlocked and reverted to the earlier public vote. Jones was eliminated as the act with the fewest public votes.

Week 6 (14/15 November)

Contestants' performances on the sixth live show
Act Order Song[60] Result[41]
Jamie Archer 1 "Radio Ga Ga" Bottom two
Lloyd Daniels 2 "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" Bottom two
Olly Murs 3 "Don't Stop Me Now" Safe
Joe McElderry 4 "Somebody to Love" Safe
John & Edward 5 "Under Pressure" / "Ice Ice Baby" Safe
Stacey Solomon 6 "Who Wants to Live Forever" Safe
Danyl Johnson 7 "We Are the Champions" Safe
Final showdown details
Jamie Archer 1 "The Show Must Go On" Eliminated
Lloyd Daniels 2 "Last Request" Safe
Judges' votes to eliminate[41]
  • Cowell: Lloyd Daniels – said Archer sang better in the final showdown performance, effectively backing his own act, Jamie Archer
  • Cheryl: Jamie Archer – backed her own act, Lloyd Daniels
  • Walsh: Jamie Archer – believed Daniels would go further in the competition
  • Minogue: Lloyd Daniels – thought Archer sang better in the final showdown

With the acts in the bottom two receiving two votes each, the result was deadlocked and reverted to the earlier public vote. Archer was eliminated as the act with the fewest public votes.

Week 7 (21/22 November)

Contestants' performances on the seventh live show
Act Order Song[62] Result
Lloyd Daniels 1 "Faith" Safe
Stacey Solomon 2 "I Can't Make You Love Me" Safe
John & Edward 3 "I'm Your Man" / "Wham Rap!" Bottom two
Danyl Johnson 4 "Careless Whisper" Safe
Olly Murs 5 "Fastlove" Bottom two
Joe McElderry 6 "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me" Safe
Final showdown details
John & Edward 1 "No Matter What" Eliminated
Olly Murs 2 "Wonderful Tonight" Safe
Judges' votes to eliminate
  • Cowell: John & Edward – backed his own act, Olly Murs, but said he would miss John & Edward
  • Cheryl: John & Edward – gave no reason
  • Walsh: Olly Murs – backed his own act, John & Edward
  • Minogue: John & Edward – based on the premise that the show is a singing competition

Week 8 (28/29 November)

Contestants' performances on the eighth live show
Act Order First song[64] Order Second song[64] Result
Danyl Johnson 1 "Relight My Fire" 7 "Your Song" Safe
Lloyd Daniels 2 "A Million Love Songs" 6 "I'm Still Standing" Eliminated
Olly Murs 3 "Love Ain't Here Anymore" 8 "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" Safe
Joe McElderry 4 "Could It Be Magic" 9 "Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word" Safe
Stacey Solomon 5 "Rule the World" 10 "Something About the Way You Look Tonight" Safe

This week did not feature a final showdown and instead the act with the fewest public votes, Lloyd Daniels, was automatically eliminated. After his elimination, Daniels reprised his week 8 performance of "A Million Love Songs" as his exit song.

Week 9: Semi-final (5/6 December)

Contestants' performances on the ninth live show
Act Order First song[66] Order Second song[66] Result
Olly Murs 1 "Can You Feel It" 5 "We Can Work It Out" Safe
Joe McElderry 2 "She's Out of My Life" 6 "Open Arms" Safe
Stacey Solomon 3 "The Way You Make Me Feel" 7 "Somewhere" Safe
Danyl Johnson 4 "Man in the Mirror" 8 "I Have Nothing" Eliminated

The semi-final did not feature a final showdown and instead the act with the fewest public votes, Danyl Johnson, was automatically eliminated. After his elimination, Johnson reprised his week 9 performance of "Man in the Mirror" as his exit song.

Week 10: Final (12/13 December)

12 December

  • Themes: Audition songs; celebrity duets; mentor's favourite performance ("song of the series")[67]
  • Musical guest: Robbie Williams ("You Know Me")[67]
Contestants' performances on the tenth live show
Act Order First song[67] Order Second song (duet)[67] Order Third song[67] Result
Stacey Solomon 1 "What a Wonderful World" 4 "Feeling Good" (with Michael Bublé) 7 "Who Wants to Live Forever" Third place
Olly Murs 2 "Superstition" 5 "Angels" (with Robbie Williams) 8 "A Fool in Love" Safe
Joe McElderry 3 "Dance with My Father" 6 "George Michael) 9 "Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word" Safe

The show also featured Jeff Brazier reporting from Solomon's home town of Dagenham, Michael Underwood in Colchester for Murs and Kimberley Walsh in McElderry's home town of South Shields.

13 December

Contestants' performances on the final live show
Act Order First song[69] Order Second song Result
Olly Murs 1 "Twist and Shout" 3 "The Climb" Runner-up
Joe McElderry 2 "Don't Stop Believin'" 4 "The Climb" Winner


This series of The X Factor was sponsored by TalkTalk and featured break bumpers pioneered by CHI & Partners, showing light graffiti set against night-time backdrops across the United Kingdom.[70] Part of the deal, which applied to ITV1, ITV2 and the programme's website, saw TalkTalk customers having the chance to design the break bumpers and download exclusive content.[70] In the Republic of Ireland, the series was sponsored by Domino's Pizza.



The first episode, which was broadcast on 22 August and showed the first set of auditions, attracted 9.9 million viewers; 47.9% of the viewing audience and the largest amount of viewers within its timeslot.[71] One week later, 9.75 million people viewed the second episode; a 47.1% share of the TV audience.[72] The third episode averaged 11.76 million viewers and a 51.9% audience share.[73] Episode four attracted 10.26 million viewers.[74] The fifth episode, which was scheduled directly against Strictly Come Dancing drew in about 9.27 million viewers, compared to 7.72 for Strictly.[75] The X Factor reached a record high number of viewers for the second and third results shows on 18 and 25 October, scoring 14.8 million viewers each.[76][77] This was beaten on 8 November when the fifth results show peaked at 16.6 million people.[78]

The final episode peaked with 19.7 million viewers when Joe McElderry was announced as the winner.[79]

Episode Air date Official ITV1 rating[80] Weekly rank[80] Share
Auditions 1 22 August 11.00 1 47.9%[71]
Auditions 2 29 August 10.81 1 47.1%[72]
Auditions 3 5 September 12.84 1 51.9%[73]
Auditions 4 12 September 11.31 1 51.7%[74]
Auditions 5 19 September 10.57 2 38.0%[75]
Auditions 6 20 September 11.37 1 41.4%[81]
Bootcamp 1 26 September 10.39 2 36.6%[82]
Bootcamp 2 27 September 11.86 1 42.5%[83][84]
Judges' houses 1 3 October 11.46 2 38.9%[85]
Judges' houses 2 4 October 13.35 1 44.9%[86]
Live show 1 10 October 12.64 2 43.8%[87][88]
Results show 1 11 October 13.82 1 46.4%[89]
Live show 2 17 October 12.07 2 42.1%[76]
Results show 2 18 October 13.89 1 46.7%[76]
Live show 3 24 October 12.80 2 44.1%[90]
Results show 3 25 October 14.02 1 47.9%[77]
Live show 4 31 October 11.74 2 42.3%[91]
Results show 4 1 November 14.52 1 47.8%[92]
Live show 5 7 November 13.05 2 46.9%[90]
Results show 5 8 November 15.00 1 49.4%[78][93]
Live show 6 14 November 13.45 2 45.1%[94]
Results show 6 15 November 15.02 1 47.9%[95]
Live show 7 21 November 14.03 2 48.6%[96]
Results show 7 22 November 14.51 1 46.5%[97]
Live show 8 28 November 13.46 2 47.8%[98]
Results 8 29 November 14.34 1 45.9%[99]
Live semi-final 5 December 13.40 2 49.5%[100]
Live semi-final results 6 December 13.55 1 46.2%[101]
Top 3 12 December 13.34 2 48.0%[102]
Top 2 13 December 16.28 1 53.2%[103]
Series average 2009 13.00 N/A 45.9%

Controversy and criticism

On 2 August 2009, The People reported that some bootcamp contestants felt they had been poorly treated by the show's producers; one compared the experience with that of a concentration camp and another claimed that those competing were only allowed to use the toilet twice a day.[104] However, a spokesperson for the programme refuted the claims, saying "Yes, it was long hours but they knew what they were signing up for. The hopefuls got breakfast at the hotel and decent food throughout the day".

The new audition format (whereby auditions are held in front of a studio audience) was criticised by fans, by Cole and by certain former contestants.[105]

The show was criticised in September 2009 for "recycling" contestants, as three singers from the final 24 acts had already been in pop bands, two had auditioned for The X Factor in previous years and one had appeared on Britain's Got Talent.[106]

Controversy began after the first live show on 10 October, after Minogue commented on press reports regarding Danyl Johnson's sexuality, sparking an online backlash.[107] Minogue's comments received some media coverage[108] resulting in Minogue releasing a statement on the issue:

"I want to clear up exactly what happened on last night's X Factor show and post my sincere apologies to anyone who took offense [sic]. I made a comment about Danyl changing the lyrics of his song. It was meant to be a humorous moment about the fact he has an opportunity to have fun with his song. An openly bi-sexual singing a song that is lyrically a 'girl's song'. Danyl and I were joking about the very same thing in rehearsals on Friday, so it carried on to the show. I'd like to apologise to anyone that was offended by my comments, it was never my intention. I spoke to Danyl straight after the show last night and he wasn't offended or upset by my comments, and knew exactly what I was saying."[109]

Minogue also apologised on the live results show on 11 October, saying Danyl was not upset by her comments.[110] It has since been reported that Ofcom received around 4000 complaints from viewers over the comment.[111]


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  3. ^ Revealed! Tonight's songs ITV X Factor, 13 December 2009
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  5. ^ "'"Simon Cowell 'asks Victoria Beckham to join X Factor. Retrieved 6 October 2014. 
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  8. ^ "Cheryl Cole gives her legs an outing in summery mini skirt – and bright red 6in heels".  
  9. ^ Bourne, Dianne (4 July 2009). "X Factor judges' 20-yard car ride".  
  10. ^ Dagnell, Andrew (12 July 2009). "Cardiff X Factor wannabes pour into Cardiff's CIA".  
  11. ^ Kilkelly, Daniel (14 July 2009). "Cowell helps distressed 'X Factor' fan".  
  12. ^ Fletcher, Alex (15 June 2009). X Factor' auditions to have live audience"'".  
  13. ^ Kilkelly, Daniel (17 June 2009). "Susan Boyle inspired 'X Factor' changes".  
  14. ^ Fletcher, Alex (22 June 2009). X Factor' contestants to re-audition"'".  
  15. ^ McMahon, Kate (27 July 2009). "X Factor boot camp to be filmed with live audience".  
  16. ^ Revoir, Paul; Spratt, Charlotte (28 September 2009). "X Factor: Final 24 contestants picked but there is a strong sense of deja vu".  
  17. ^ Fletcher, Alex (28 September 2009). X Factor' group Tru Colourz axed"'".  
  18. ^ "Will Young helps Cheryl on The X Factor".  
  19. ^ Dyke, Peter (4 September 2009). "X FACTOR JUDGE LOUIS FLYS INTO MILAN".  
  20. ^ a b Thompson, Jody (18 September 2009). "Robbie Williams to launch comeback on X Factor".  
  21. ^ a b Nissim, Mayer (30 September 2009). "'"Boyle 'to sing on X Factor in November.  
  22. ^ a b Levine, Nick (8 October 2009). "Whitney confirms 'X Factor' performance".  
  23. ^ a b "X Factor line up Westlife and Michael Bublé".  
  24. ^ a b Balls, David (22 October 2009). "'"JLS, Bon Jovi to perform on 'X Factor.  
  25. ^ a b Fletcher, Alex (230 October 2009). "'"Leona, BEP confirmed for 'X Factor.  
  26. ^ a b Nissim, Mayer (30 October 2009). "'"Shakira confirmed for 'X Factor.  
  27. ^ a b Nissim, Mayer (30 October 2009). "'"Susan Boyle to appear on 'X Factor.  
  28. ^ a b "Mariah's X-rated".  
  29. ^ a b "'"Rihanna, Keys to perform on 'X Factor.  
  30. ^ a b "Janet Jackson and Lady GaGa confirmed!".  
  31. ^  
  32. ^ Moore, Victoria;  
  33. ^ Addley, Esther (14 November 2009). "Is The X Factor killing pop?".  
  34. ^ Williams, Paul (21 November 2009). Williams, Paul, ed.  
  35. ^ The X Factor Series 6 Vote Percentages
  36. ^ a b c d e Smith, Lizzie (11 October 2009). "X Factor: Kandy Rain sent home as Dannii Minogue apologises to Danyl Johnson for bisexual jibe".  
  37. ^ a b c d Johnson, Chris (18 October 2009). "Rikki becomes second X Factor casualty as Simon Cowell saves Rachel after sing-off".  
  38. ^ a b c Sprat, Charlotte (26 October 2009). "X Factor: Miss Frank crash out after singing for survival against Danyl Johnson".  
  39. ^ a b c Daily Mail reporter (5 November 2009). "Rachel Adedeji puts on a brave face following her exit from the X Factor after sing-off with Lloyd Daniels".  
  40. ^ a b c Smith, Lizzie (8 November 2009). "X Factor: Lucie Jones sent home as Jedward survive elimination thanks to Simon Cowell".  
  41. ^ a b c "Going with the 'fro: X Factor's Jamie Archer gracious in defeat after losing out to Lloyd Daniels".  
  42. ^ Spratt, Charlotte; Nathan, Sara (23 November 2009). "Good news: John and Edward are finally out of X Factor. Bad news: They're planning to concentrate on their music".  
  43. ^ Smith, Lizzie (30 November 2009). "X Factor: Cheryl Cole can't hide her disappointment after Lloyd Daniels fails to make it through to semi-finals".  
  44. ^ "X Factor: Three's a crowd as Olly Murs and Stacey Solomon share a car to rehearsals... and Joe's the odd one out".  
  45. ^ "Stacey Solomon has been voted out of The X Factor final".  
  46. ^ a b "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  47. ^ Wightman, Catriona (11 October 2009). "'"Walsh 'will not appear on X Factor.  
  48. ^ "Kandy Rain first out of X Factor".  
  49. ^ a b "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  50. ^ Nathan, Sara (17 October 2009). "Nervous Cheryl Cole WILL be singing live on X Factor (with a little recorded help)".  
  51. ^ Fletcher, Alex (15 October 2009). "Walsh to miss full 'X Factor' weekend".  
  52. ^ a b Moodie, Clemmie (20 October 2009). "Whitney Houston gives Simon Cowell a dressing down over use of 'new' song".  
  53. ^ "Episode 13". The X Factor (series 6). 17 October 2009. ITV.
  54. ^ a b "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  55. ^ a b "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  56. ^ a b "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  57. ^ "Cowell scraps plans for 'X Factor' dance week". Ireland On-Line. 10 November 2009. Retrieved 10 November 2009. 
  58. ^ a b Wight, Douglas (13 November 2009). "Queen lined up for X Factor".  
  59. ^ Wight, Douglas (24 October 2009). "X Factor finalists' Jacko tribute".  
  60. ^ "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  61. ^ "Wham week!".  
  62. ^ "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  63. ^ "Take That/Elton John Theme for X Factor".  
  64. ^ a b "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  65. ^ "Jacko sis will judge X tributes".  
  66. ^ a b "Revealed! This week's songs".  
  67. ^ a b c d e "Revealed! Tonight's songs".  
  68. ^ Colin Robertson and David Lowe (12 December 2009). "Joe tipped for landslide in X Factor Final".  
  69. ^ Joe: "I can't believe it!" ITV X-Factor, 13 December 2009
  70. ^ a b Alarcon, Camille (3 August 2009). "TalkTalk to sponsor The X Factor".  
  71. ^ a b Wilkes, Neil (23 August 2009). The X Factor' opens to 9.9 million"'".  
  72. ^ a b Wilkes, Neil (31 August 2009). X Factor' maintains ratings pace"'".  
  73. ^ a b Wilkes, Neil (6 September 2009). X Factor' grows audience by 2 million"'".  
  74. ^ a b Wilkes, Neil (14 September 2009). "Latest 'X Factor' draws 10.3 million".  
  75. ^ a b Wilkes, Neil (20 September 2009). "X Factor' wins ratings battle with 'Strictly".  
  76. ^ a b c McMahon, Kate (19 October 2009). "X Factor hits record 14.8m high".  
  77. ^ a b McMahon, Kate (26 October 2009). "X Factor matches 14.8m peak".  
  78. ^ a b French, Dan (9 November 2009). "Lucie's shock 'X Factor' exit draws 14.4m".  
  79. ^ French, Dan (14 December 2009). "Joe McElderry's 'X Factor' win draws 19.7m".  
  80. ^ a b "Weekly Viewing Summary (see relevant week)".  
  81. ^ French, Dan (21 September 2009). Doc Martin' returns to 7.7 million"'".  
  82. ^ Wilkes, Neil (29 September 2009). "'"Gap narrows between 'X Factor', 'Strictly.  
  83. ^ Tryhorn, Chris (28 September 2009). "TV ratings – 27 September: Doc Martin a step ahead at 7.2m despite slip".  
  84. ^ French, Dan (29 September 2009). House' finale pulls in 549,000"'".  
  85. ^ Wilkes, Neil (5 October 2009). "Saturday 'X Factor' tops 10 million".  
  86. ^ Wilkes, Neil (5 October 2009). "12.4 million see 'X Factor' top 12 unveiled".  
  87. ^ "X Factor wins battle for viewers". Press Association. 11 October 2009. Retrieved 11 October 2009. 
  88. ^ French, Dan (11 October 2009). "First 'X Factor' live show draws 11.3m".  
  89. ^ French, Dan (12 October 2009). The X Factor' hits new series high"'".  
  90. ^ a b McMahon, Kate (26 October 2009). "Strictly's early start draws 8.4m".  
  91. ^ 10.3m tune in for 'X Factor' Rock Week Digital Spy, 3 November 2009
  92. ^ 'The X Factor' hits new high of 13.9m Digital Spy, 2 November 2009
  93. ^ Lucie’s shock exit seen by 16.6m X Factor Central, 9 November 2009
  94. ^ 11.9m tune in for 'X Factor' Queen Week Digital Spy, 15 November 2009
  95. ^ 'Waters of Mars' seen by 9.1m Digital Spy, 16 November 2009
  96. ^ 'X Factor' hits Saturday high with 13m Digital Spy, 22 November 2009
  97. ^ John & Edward's 'X Factor' exit draws 13.8m Digital Spy, 23 November 2009
  98. ^ 'X Factor' top five performances draw 12.3m Digital Spy, 30 November 2009
  99. ^ 13.5m tune in for Lloyd's 'X Factor' exit Digital Spy, 30 November 2009
  100. ^ 'X Factor' Jacko week draws 12.4m Digital Spy, 7 December 2009
  101. ^ 13m tune in for Danyl's 'X Factor' exit Digital Spy, 7 December 2009
  102. ^ 12.4m see Stacey voted off 'X Factor' Digital Spy, 13 December 2009
  103. ^ Joe McElderry's 'X Factor' win draws 19.7m Digital Spy, 14 December 2009
  104. ^ Kilkelly, Daniel (2 August 2009). X Factor' stars reveal boot camp woes"'".  
  105. ^ "X Factor judge Cheryl Cole hints she prefers old audition format".  
  106. ^ "X Factor: one in four acts ‘former contestants or pop stars’".  
  107. ^ "Dannii Minogue outing Danyl Johnson as gay". Unreality Shout. Retrieved 11 October 2009. 
  108. ^ Smith, Lizzie (10 October 2009). "X Factor: Cheryl Cole's fury at Simon Cowell's stripper insult... while Dannii Minogue's bisexual jibe nearly costs her job".  
  109. ^ "OFFICIAL STATEMENT: Dannii Minogue & Danyl Johnson". 11 October 2009. Retrieved 11 October 2009. 
  110. ^ "SORRY FOR JOKE: Dannii Minogue & Danyl Johnson". TPA hosted by Google. 11 October 2009. Retrieved 11 October 2009. 
  111. ^ "Dannii's Danyl disaster".  

External links

  • (2009 archive)The X Factor at
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