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'X Factor' Recap: Melanie Amaro Is What Simon Has Been Looking For

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First Posted: 09/23/11 11:17 AM ET Updated: 11/23/11 05:12 AM ET

By now we all know that the "X Factor" premiere fell short of expectations Wednesday night, drawing in just 12 million viewers as compared to the most recent "American Idol"'s roughly 26 million. We also know that many of you threw a curveball at show creator Simon Cowell by voicing a preference for ridiculously good-looking pop star Cheryl Cole over Pussycat Dolls singer Nicole Scherzinger as a judge. Well sadly the story continues: by now we all know that the second-half of the premiere, well, kind of stank. In the end, there's not much to say about the two-hour show Thursday night -- one that scoured Dallas and Memphis in hopes of finding someone, anyone, talented. We got our fair share of silly ghost talks as filler for talent, we got Nick Voss, who was the splitting image of Vanilla Ice minus a few razored-out stripes from his head, and experienced the strangely seductive acrobatic dance moves of 17-year-old Kenneth from "30 Rock" Jonny Rogers who gave a spirited, trance-rock performance of a song he wrote that I actually kind of LOVED... but the judges passed.

So who was the sole standout from the show? Floridian shrieker Melanie Amaro. Shades of Jennifer Hudson, the 18-year-old did what her younger sister told her to do and used "what gave you" to wow the judges with "Listen," by Beyonce, excerpted below. A choked-up Nicole and Paula stood up to salute her in a kind of triumphant woman dance. LA Reid said Melanie had the "X Factor." And Simon put it best when he said "When I was asked by a lot of people why I was bringing this show to America, it was because I was looking for people like you." So finish the show now! We have a winner! Thank you "X Factor" America, we can be done with you now.

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Filed by Youyoung Lee  |