Drama continues to characterize the journey of Filipino contestants in “The X Factor UK.”
One week after Alisah Bonaobra staved off elimination in the popular talent search series, Filipino boy band JBK were not as lucky.
The trio composed of Joshua Bulot, Bryan del Rosario, and Kim Lawrenz Ordonio, first made a name for themselves as one of the finalists of McJim’s “Dreams Get Real” competition in 2014.
Citing fellow boy bands like Boyz II Men as among their influences, JBK made it as far as the Six Chair Challenge of the competition and seemed to be ready to further advance to the Judges’ House phase of the contest but ultimately failed to impress Groups judge Simon Cowell.
Simon initially gave the boys one of the six seats following their impressive rendition of Boyz II Men’s “I’ll Make Love to You” that wowed the cheering crowd and the three other judges alike.
“Wow, guys! You’ve got a great reaction on that song, your vocals are great, I just think it’s a no-brainer with you,” exclaimed Sharon Osbourne after the group’s performance.
Filipino-American singer Nicole Scherzinger, formerly of the Pussycat Dolls, was ecstatic. “JBK, I’m so proud of you boys, my Filipino brothers up there! I’m proud that you flew all the way from the Philippines ‘coz you are not flying back home!”
Louis told Simon that the group absolutely deserved a seat and the hard-to-please judge relented and asked the duo Afro Swagg to give up their seat for JBK.
But that was not the end of it.
Undecided on which act to give the last remaining seat to in the challenge after all the groups have performed, Simon surprised everyone by asking JBK and girl group Lemonade to engage in a sing-off.
“Simon! No!,” yelled a visibly unhappy Nicole.
JBK went first, singing a few bars of All-4-One’s “I Can Love You Like That” that drew a standing ovation from Nicole, Sharon and Louis.
Not to be outdone, the equally formidable Lemonade delivered a “birit” reading of Shanice Wilson’s “Keep Your Inner Child” that was also well-received.
It seemed that while the crowd was divided between JBK and Lemonade, at least Louis and Nicole were very vocal in their preference for JBK.
Simon, however, ultimately went with Lemonade, much to the chagrin of Nicole who proceeded to walk out and said, “Don’t talk to me” to Simon as she passed by him.
With the elimination of JBK, Alisah Bonaobra is the only Filipino contestant left in the competition. Two other Filipina singers, Elysa V and Gaga Lord, failed to advance earlier.
“The X Factor UK” airs first and exclusive on RTL CBS Entertainment same day as the UK on Sundays and Mondays at 10:30AM with primetime encores Sundays, Mondays and Thursdays at 9PM.
RTL CBS Entertainment is available on SKYcable channels 53(SD) and 196(HD), SKYdirect channel 35, Destiny Cable channel 53, and Cablelink channels 37(SD) and 313(HD).