Oh, LeAnn. What happened? It all seems like such a good idea: 13-year-old wunderkind Carly Rose Sonenclar, who is one of three finalists on this season of The X Factor, taking the stage with one of her idols, the great country singer LeAnn Rimes!
But instead, we watched Rimes stumble out on stage, clutch a teenage girl for dear life (or stability) and yowl and croak into the microphone (which was frequently too far away from her mouth). It was many things — troubling, uncomfortable, portentous of dark things to come in Rimes’ future — but “good” was not one of them.
Anyway, poor Carly Rose, whose vocal performance was typically faultless, was visibly uncomfortable — she kept studying Rimes with confusion, trying to figure out what was going on, and then plastering a smile back on her face once she remembered the cameras were on her — and then Britney Spears woke up from her trance, wondered who those two strangers on stage were and called it “shockingly amazing,” which is par for the course, but really, yikes. Somebody probably should have mentioned how disastrous it was, but then, the refusal to acknowledge how bad things are has become the defining attribute of The X Factor this season, so it’s probably in keeping with the spirit of the show.
Watch up top, if you dare.