TV Watch The X Factor
After a baseball-induced hiatus, The X Factor returned with its own playoffs on Tuesday night, as one performer from each category – Boys, Girls, Over 25s and Groups – was eliminated.
Ellona Santiago, 17, kicked off the live show for the Girls with "Till the World Ends" by Britney Spears, which prompted a standing ovation from mentor Demi Lovato.
Bespectacled bookworm Danie Geimer, 15, sang "Wrecking Ball" by Miley Cyrus, a performance that had judge Simon Cowell asking, "How do we make you not boring?"
Sparks flew when Alex Kinsey and Sierra Deaton met on a beach back in 2009 – as he played Jason Mraz's "I'm Yours" on his guitar – and the sparks were there again when the duo took the stage during The X Factor's four-chair challenge on Thursday.
The Florida couple, who previously wowed the judges with their fun rendition of Britney Spears's "Toxic," delivered another memorable performance, taking on the Grease anthem "You're the One That I Want."
Romantic, sweet, original and pitch-perfect, the performance gave the judges chills.
"People are going to fall in love with you," Simon Cowell said, adding, "I like the fact that you put your own twist on the songs."
The X Factor's nail-biting elimination round got even more tense on Wednesday night when judge Paulina Rubio admitted she'd made a mistake and had second thoughts about a contestant she'd booted from the show.
With the Over 25s and Girls teams decided last week, Rubio's Boys were performing for their chance to make it to the live shows.
In a dramatic double-switch, Rubio initially sent home the painfully shy but vocally powerful Tim Olstad – who sang Miley Cyrus's "The Climb" – but then called him back, saying she'd been wrong, and had him take a seat in her final four chairs.
Paulina Rubio says there's "a lot of talent" on the current season of The X Factor. But in a competitive season like this one, what can contestants do to impress her and prove they have The X Factor?
Here, the Mexican superstar shares her audition do's and don'ts for contestants.
Is there teen love in the air for pop star Austin Mahone and Fifth Harmony's Camila Cabelo?
"Austin caught Camila's eye when they were both in New York for the MTV VMAs [in August]," a friend of the teens tells PEOPLE. "They met the day before at the Arthur Ashe Kids Day and have been in touch ever since."
Back in December the "What About Love" crooner Tweeted his support for the 16-year-old brunette beauty whose group finished third on season two of The X Factor, "Hey gorgeous! Good job tonight. I voted for you."
Just a few months later it appears the two might be an item.
For Simon Cowell, it's the more, the furrier!
The 53-year-old introduced two new puppies he recently adopted Thursday over Twitter, asking fans, "Any suggestions for names?"
Cowell, who is expecting his first child with girlfriend Lauren Silverman, has spoken out in the past about the importance of adopting a dog rather than buying it from a pet shop. Last month, he sent out a message that he was looking to expand his family.
It's certainly been a busy week for Sinéad O'Connor.
The Irish singer – who got into a war of words with Miley Cyrus earlier this week after reaching out to the 20-year-old in an open letter advising her not to "prostitute" herself – is now worrying about the death of rock 'n' roll.
And she knows who killed it – Simon Cowell.
In an interview on The Late Late Show in Ireland on Friday, the 46-year-old blasted the X Factor judge.
Overly confident singers had a rough night on The X Factor on Thursday as judge Demi Lovato and her team of girls continued the Four Chair Challenge that began the night before.
Primrose Martin, a full-time student from Las Vegas, hit the stage with confidence to spare for her spirited performance of "Blame It on the Boogie," but the judges found the performance off-putting.
"There's something about you that comes off as too confident," Lovato told the 20-year-old. "It kind of just rubs me the wrong way."
Simon Cowell was also unimpressed. "That was actually beyond awful," he said. "Seriously, seriously dreadful."
It was like the ultimate Hunger Games version of musical chairs.
The X Factor rolled out its new Four Chair Challenge on Wednesday, which sees the top 10 contestants in each category compete for four coveted spots and the chance to move onto the live competition.
The Over 25s were the first group to sing for mentor and judge Kelly Rowland, and she quickly filled her four chairs with the first four contestants to perform.
But as the remaining six hopefuls performed, Rowland had the option to bump a singer from one of the chairs (eliminating them from the competition) and replace them with a teammate – and that's when the cut-throat musical chairs began.
The X Factor already has its top 40.
Ten acts for each of the four categories – boys, girls, over 25s and groups – were chosen on Thursday's show and will be advancing to a brand new elimination round called the "Four-Chair Challenge," (not to be confused with The Voice).
So who made the cut? Keep reading to find out ...