Wave goodbye to Bootcamp: the traditional second stage of The X Factor won’t feature in this year’s competition...


In previous series, Bootcamp has seen performers who impressed the judges in the audition rounds taking on a series of challenges – including a singing battle alongside other contestants and a performance in front of an arena audience – to bag their place in the next round.

But this year, the auditions will be followed immediately by the dreaded Six Chair Challenge, in which acts vie for a place in each of the judges' categories in a nail-biting game of musical chairs.

However, that doesn’t mean all the acts who received at least three yeses in their auditions will get a chance to sing in the Six Chair Challenge. Judges Simon Cowell, Louis Tomlinson, Ayda Field and Robbie Williams will first whittle down the hopefuls in a photo-based deliberation process.

Just like in Britain’s Got Talent – and at the end of Bootcamp in previous years – it’s likely we’ll see the judges um-ing and ah-ing over a table covered with polaroids of contestants.

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A source told RadioTimes.com: “Every year producers look at refreshing the show and this was one of a number of changes brought in for this series along with others such as the great new panel and the introduction of the ‘Golden X’ at the Six Chair Challenge.”

For those not in the know, the ‘Golden X’ spot is a new addition to the Six Chair Challenge, a safe seat the relevant judge can offer to an outstanding performer.

If gifted a spot on the Golden X spot, that act can’t be swapped for another, effectively ensuring they’re through to the next round.

It’s quite similar to how the Golden Buzzer works in Britain’s Got Talent, with a Golden X act earning an instant place at Judges’ Houses. And with Bootcamp not appearing in this year's streamlined competition, we'll get to see it in action sooner than we thought.


The X Factor airs on Saturday 15th September at 8.25pm and Sunday 16th September at 8pm

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