Saturday, November 18, 2006

X Factor's Ben Will Trade Lower Tonight (With A Little Help From His Friends)

It has been a tough couple of weeks for former-favourite Ben Mills.

Since touching evens during the aftermath of his rendition of Rod Stewart's Maggie May, not only has Ben had to endure singing ABBA but has been outshone for two straight weeks running by top-class performances from Leona Lewis. Ben's implied probablity of winning the show has plumetted from 50% to just 25% at time of writing.

Is that for Ben price (4) correct? We think it is not.

Leona is way ahead in most opinion polls (including our own) and is of course the worthy favourite. We expect her price to continue to contract for the time being and think that she will be well received this evening singing "Bridge Over Troubled Water".

However we consider tonight's show to be a very good opportunity for Ben to get "back in the game" and regain some of his former fans and popularity.

As with Rod Stewart, Ben's husky voice has been often compared to Joe Cocker's and so tonight, Sharon and Simon have chosen to "break out the big guns" to boost Ben with Joe Cocker's most famous/popular song - his wonderful cover version of The Beatles' "With A Little Help From My Friends".

Joe Cocker's arrangement of the song also heavily features backing singers - and so we expect an impressive and entertaining rendition which will have praise heaped on it by the judges, despite concerns about Ben's "
Laryngitis" - which understands is not the viral/bacterial sort - just more of a sore throat.

To get an idea of what the producers can draw from - here's Joe singing his version live*. *inless he's fallen back to his old ways we don't expect Ben to be high on the show tonight as Joe apparently is;

How low can Ben trade tonight? Leona and Eton Road's performances will of course have some impact. Eton Road might actually be a back here for the brave but given their lack of singing talent, the popular falsetto register Scissor Sisters track they've chosen could be a poisoned chalice - potential car-crash TV - too risky for us.

Leona could well be very very impressive, but we don't see that as a huge risk to Ben - as that is the consensus opinion.

We think that Ben will at least spend some time at 3.5 levels tonight and if really impressive, trade as low as 3s. We'll be polling the public furiously for their reactions to tonight's pivotal show and will be back later on...

Special Bets

Live winner market prices can be found here;

Thursday, November 16, 2006

X Factor and I'm A Celebrity Updates

It's getting very busy in Reality TV world. Firstly, as usual, we're going to take a look at the polling landscape for the remaining six contestants battling it out in the X Factor.

Leona continues to stretch her already impressive lead by taking votes from her two closest rivals. Elsewhere, Robert jumps to the top of the danger zone after his well received performance last week, whilst Ray and the MacDonald Brothers pick up slightly, but remain perilously close to the bottom.

However, as we have seen every week - there's something fillet o'fishy going on with those canny lads from Ayr when it comes to their hard-core fanbase not showing up in the polls.

As we have with weeks gone by, we'll assume that Leonna, Ben and Eton Road are going to be safe from the bottom two on Saturday night. The fair odds calculator that we posted last week here can be used again this week, just set the odds of Nikitta being in the final two as close to zero as you can!

With Robert having the wind behind him both in the polls and quality of performance, it does seem to come down to the question of whether the Macdonalds fans can out-vote those of Ray. They did so last week, but if Ray does find himself in the bottom two again, he'll need to be joined by the MacDonalds so that Simon can save him. Any other scenario, and Louis will most likely get his way and shoot the "one-trick pony".

Now over to the jungle...

The good people over at have published their initial reaction poll, and it looks a lot like the one we published earlier in the week, with Myleene comfortably in the lead:

Myleene Klass 32%
Jason Donovan 16%
David Gest 16%
Toby Anstis 14%
Lauren Booth 7%
Matt Willis 5%
Jan Leeming 4%
Scott Henshall 2%
Phina Oruche 2%
Faith Brown 2%

One interesting difference is the strong showing from David Gest, who was by far the least popular contestant according to our initial poll.

Always keen to keep our finger on the pulse we started another ongoing poll last night aimed at capturing any change in sentiment after the first couple of shows. This poll is picking up a warming to Mr Guest, probably reflecting good performances in the challenges and him being one of the livelier members of the group.

A question we have been asked about our initial poll is about the male/female split of responses, and whether there are any differences between the preferences of the genders. Interestingly (and maybe predictably) there was. It would appear that for some reason,
we can't think why, Myleene is a little more popular with the boys than she is with the girls. When we filter for males, she scores 41%, whilst filtering for females this drops to 22%. Adjusting our initial poll to reflect the usual gender split for voters of Reality TV shows, this reduces Myleene's lead, however she is still comfortably ahead of Jason.

We will release the results of the ongoing poll shortly..



Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I'm A Celebrity - Myleene Is Popular - Its Not Just HearSay

We've been polling members of the public on their initial views of this year's crop of I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here! and we'd like to let you know the initial take on this crop of b and c listers (and Anstis).

It exciting for us to have a second opinion on other polls this time around.
Last year we had to rely on This Morning's daily output - which did help us "lump on" "C Thatch" at about 2.4 though..

Here are the results of a 206 person poll, conducted 13th Nov - 14th Nov. (Numbers are less in the second question due to drop outs).

- Quite an astonishing gap at such an early stage for Myleene, which reminds us of Pete's popularity in the early weeks of this year's Big Brother. The majority of responders rate her either their first or second favourite.

David Gest who is currently doing well in the Digitalspy poll (along with Myleene) appears to have no support to speak of at all. His current price of 7.4 apears to us to be a reasonable lay price even at this early stage.

Myleene seems a much more appealing prospect in general to Sheree last year (who traded into the 3s later on in the show). So we're willing to suggest that an appropiate price for Myleene should be at least that level for a number of reasons, which we'd be happy to discuss.

Current best win market prices can be found on our odds comparison site here;

Monday, November 13, 2006

X Factor - Final Results Of Our Saturday Night Reactions Poll

Below, the final results of our poll from Saturday night. We asked questions on favourite performance, overall favourite contestant and second favourite contestant (for the first time this week).

For reference, last week your "overall" picture is shown in the gif below.

Overall, Leona added 10.4% this week. Eton Road lost 2.7% of "overall" support and Ben 6.9%. Ashley's 9.2% of support has of course been reallocated.

Last Week

This Week's Survey

Next week (25/11) will be an interesting week as the format is changing to pure public vote from then on. This week is that last week that Cowell and Co. are able to manipulate the ending.

From 25/11 each act will perform twice in the first show, with the public vote opening after the first performance. The second show reveals which act polled the fewest votes, and that act is automatically eliminated from the competition (the judges do not have a vote; their only role is to comment on the performances).