Last night, 13-year-old Rachel Crow was voted off The X Factor in a move that few -- including Rachel -- expected. When it was announced that she was going home, she collapsed to the ground and started wailing. Simon Cowell rushed up on stage to comfort her, and her mother raced to assure her it would all be okay. "You promise me? You promise me?" Rachel begged her.
It was one of the most dramatic eliminations I've ever seen on a competition show. Take a look for yourself at this scene that has everyone talking.
Shocking and heartbreaking, right? Well, at first glance anyway. But the more I watch it, the more it seems like a purposefully exaggerated reaction at best and big fat rehearsed fake at worst. Sure, anyone would be upset about losing out on a $5 million recording contract, but Rachel's emotions just don't ring true. Plus, check out her cheeks after all of that crying -- dry, dry, dry!
It's not a bad strategy on her part. I mean, why not go out with a memorable bang if you have to go. You get a whole lot more extra sympathy and attention than if you just walk away graciously with a single tear or two. Maybe I'm being cold, but I wasn't feeling her pain at all. Maybe she'd rehearsed it one time too many.
The person I do feel a bit sorry for is judge Nicole Scherzinger, who cast the vote that sent Rachel home. She seemed pretty genuinely distraught both before and after the announcement was made. "Don't cry," Rachel told Nicole before the vote. "It's OK, I'm good with anything."
Clearly she wasn't okay with it though after the fact, and Nicole felt horrible. Unless ... she's just a better actress than Rachel.
Do you think Rachel Crow's reaction to her elimination was fake?
Image via X Factor USA