Is Misha B too Black to Win X-Factor?

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Gary Barlow shattered the dreams of X-Factor hopeful Misha Bryan by telling her she won’t win the X-Factor because of wrongful bullying allegations made by his fellow judges. And much has be written suggesting that Misha is too Black to win the competition, while others have pointed out that Black contestants have won in the past. But is there a difference between then and now?

Misha Bryan sings Rolling in the Deep on X-Factor UK

Leona Lewis won the third series of X-Factor in 2006 because Simon Cowell championed her cause; and she is after all bi-racial with coloured eyes and ‘blonde’ hair, which the British public ‘connect with’ more than the attributes of dark-skinned brown-eyed women of obvious African descent. Furthermore, she has a good, commercially appealing Mariah Carey-style voice and with that “international beige” complexion that is said to sell more records even without any talent attached in this supposedly ‘colour-blind’ world. Yet, the programme makers still found it necessary at the time to bring out Leona’s white mother and grandmother just to remind the good British public that Miss Lewis was in fact just one of them, if a little dusky round the edges.

Alexandra Burke, on the other hand, won the fifth series of X-Factor in 2008 largely because of the Cheryl Cole factor. As her mentor, Cole tried every trick in the book to persuade the folks at home to vote for her protégée, which of course indirectly meant a vote for our Cheryl. If you recall back then, Cheryl performed in-between the voting and all manner of other attempts were made throughout the series to persuade us that we were really voting for Cheryl Cole, our new English Rose, to win the competition between judges that year. Who knows how Dannii Minogue must have felt about it all, but for Cowell, it was an absolute Godsend, driving even more viewers to his moneymaking venture.

That’s not to suggest that Alexandra Burke had no talent, she had it in abundance, but those who know how racially motivated Britain can be were waiting with baited-breath to see if a dark-skinned woman of African descent could actually win this thing. That Burke was taller, leggier, and eurocentrically ‘better looking’ than Misha B, false hair ‘n’ all, played an important role. But we were grateful nonetheless to think that change had come to Britain. It is interesting to note that Burke’s career has never gone beyond the highpoint of her X-Factor win or the Hallelujah single that followed it. It seems that after X-Factor, no one really knows quite what to do with her talents, and she has ended up looking like some forlorn drag queen rather than the international artiste we all presumed she would become. But that mantle is reserved for Leona Lewis in the Cowell stable, and even he still believes lighter is brighter, and will no doubt be backing the Leona Lewis clone, Melanie Amaro, now that Drew is out of the runnings on X-Factor USA. But I digress.

Back in Little Britain, and many are wondering what is it exactly that the British public have against Misha B or her gorgeous mentor, Kelly Rowland, and the fact is they’re just too damn dark and too good for this place. And without Simon Cowell or Cheryl Cole to indirectly big them up, just who the hell do they think they are, anyway, with all that brimming confidence as if they’re better than everybody else is. And that’s just it, they are better than everybody else on that show is, and Britain doesn’t like it one little bit. But the good British public will never express their racist feelings outright (as many Americans might), but like Tula Paulinea “Tulisa” Contostavlos, herself a foreigner, they will find some trumped up excuse to justify their envy and xenophobia or simply put it down to they’re just not likeable or like us, meaning “white” or “English.”

In the final analysis, the only bullying that’s taken place on this year’s X-Factor is the bullying of Misha B. But should she win this eighth series of X-Factor UK, we could safely say that Simon Cowell’s moneymaking ‘talent show’ has single-handedly changed the social consciousness and fabric of Britain and Britishness forever. But that’s unlikely to happen me thinks. The truth is that whether Misha wins this show or not, she truly belongs in the USA as an export to Britain alongside the likes of Missy Elliott or the evergreen Grace Jones. Thank God for producers like Jay-Z with the money, power and influence to make her dreams a reality in this so called entertainment business. I’m sure that with a word from his friend Kelly Rowland, he can see Misha’s talent and hear the ca$h tills ringing. Simon Cowell isn’t the only music mogul in town.

38 thoughts on “Is Misha B too Black to Win X-Factor?”

  1. Guimmore says:

    misha b without a doubt deserves to be the winner of x factor 8th series.

  2. Tintinus says:

    What gimp wrote this piece? I can’t help but laugh at the part about Leona’s white mother being used to help instate her nationality. I hope Misha doesn’t win because she is just a black version of last years Cher. And to add to it, the era of Xfactor is done, no one wants their records after they win. The public do not take these acts seriously. Lame. 

  3. Istersay says:

    Love Misha B, she is the best thing on the show. I’m in the US and can’t wait to buy her music

  4. Over it says:

    I don’t think that is right at all.  It isn’t about her darkness – at least the colour of her skin.  What has come over is a person who is very harsh – her styling in particular, her personality and aloofness.  Whether it is her style or not, it is about winning the competition, then you can do what you want – within the bounds of your contract, but winning that is everything.  A little softening, a little humbleness etc. the subtle methods of alluring the crowds – voters.  Perhaps while everyone else is deemed to be more colour blind, your website is anything but, and perhaps falls into the same stable as MOBO, Black Police Association etc. etc. self imposed Apartheid.  Get over it, the woman is good, but her approach put many people off – perhaps the same could have been true with Grace Jones had she been in this competition, but perhaps her backers and advisers would have guided her better – or perhaps she would have listened.

    1. Kelly says:

      They have MOBO, because the Brist would not recognise black singers. They have the black police association as support for racism against black police officers.  They have BET because the BBC, ITV do not have any shows or adverts showing blacks in a positive light. 

    2. Kelly says:

      They also have a ton of Indian, Muslim channels catering to asian. One BET does not hurt anyone. They have the latin grammy awards to celebrate latin music, artist and culture – just like the MOBO’S.  They have 2 country music awards which do celebrate black music.   

    3. Kelly says:

      How many black families and babies do you see in UK adverts?  How many black women do you see in UK adverts?  That is why they have the BET.  How many black skincare and makeup products are shown on uk adverts ? NONE. That is why they have BET.     Mobos celebrates African music – which gets not attention, even though it is just as talented as  Uk music.  Would the Brits nominate 2face from Nigeria?  No. That is why the Mobo’s is there, to celebrate OUR talented singers from all over the world and not just Girls aloud or Jessie J, which is what the brits do. 

  5. Music is colourless says:

    This is the most ridiculous piece I have ever read. Why is everything about race? Misha is just not as good as Marcus, it is simple. Why do some black people always make it about race. Get over yourself.

    1. Miyanda04 says:

      this was not a black person who wrote this

  6. Connormccann says:

    What a self damaging article this was. Simply looking for racism where there isn’t any.  If Misha B doesn’t win, It’s because the general audience wanted someone else to win, not because she is ‘too black’. Leona and Alexandra won because they were by far the best acts in the competition and warm people you could connect to, Misha B is not. 

  7. Yddh says:

    What a disgraceful article – its because Misha B has an aggressive attitude and isn’t particularly likeable – basically twisting the facts to push the “black” agenda – pure disgrace. If you don’t like the UK – simple —-leave

  8. Ashley says:

    I completely agree. I’m a white and British girl in my early 20s and I’ve voted for Misha B every week since the beginning. Her talent, confidence and beauty are inspiring. People should open their minds and see past whatever prejudices they might have.

  9. lollybabes says:

    You have just expressed what I have been thinking for the
    last few weeks. Unfortunately my writing skills in English are not  good (I am Spanish), and when I’ve  tried to bring this conversation  into a very popular blog in the UK, most
    people ignored  or make a joke of it.  

    I think Misha is a great role model, a girl with the most
    disadvantaged beginnings in life,  who
    went  through a troubled childhood, got
    into fights but later devoted  herself to
    music and turned her life around.  

    I am glad  that Misha’s
     hard work and passion are appreciated,
    and I sincerely  hope she can have a
    future in the USA, with a non xfactor producer,  far away from the bigots that run  the UK tabloids, the hate/bullygate crusade
    and the xfactor circus.

    Thank you!

  10. Kmshana2 says:

    Misha is great singer,performer.No one would compare to Misha B.Let wait and see on the future.The best CD seller in the world,Performer etc.
    Her mosics will never last

  11. Sonnarz says:

    A most disappointing article. There is enough racism around without any need to go looking for it. This is the kind of nonsense that makes it that much harder to uncover and expose as well as challenge real racism when it show its ugly head. Honestly! So disappointing.

    1. lollybabes says:

      I had a  good look to various Misha’s youtubes clips and
      encountered  in there many comments, such
      as : Misha= “ape”, “gorilla”, “wog go back to the Congo”, “monkey featured fat
      nosed tree swinging n@gg@”, etc.  I don’t
      know about you, but in my book those look pretty real  racist comments to me.  If they were a few odd isolated posts,  I wouldn’t even be mentioning it, but
      unfortunately there were so many- especially at the first few weeks that it was
      hard to visit the internet without feeling disgust. 

  12. edgarkarambar says:

    what are you talking about man, black or white whats the difference , the filthy rich xfactor organisors are trying to spot talent here and you are busy spotting color skin. I hope you are not a secret millionare on state benefit

    1. Tom Cee says:

      The difference is there, no matter what Misha did she was constantly in the Bottom 2, look at that Irish Girl how did she stay in the competion for so long? I hate Tulisa and Louis for doing what they did

  13. Kelly says:

    Jay Z has the power, but he will never sign a dark skin, fat, ‘ugly’ girl like Misha. Misha cannot sing as good as many black women in the usa, or rap. Jay Z only signs light skin women whether they can sing or not. Christina Millian, Rihanna, Alexis Jordan, Bridget Kelly, Rita Ora ( eastern european blonde ) . 

    1. Tom Cee says:

      Apart from Rihanna none of those idiots on your list can actually sing better than Misha

      1. Kelly says:

        Rihanna cannot sing like misha, but she has light skin and green eyes. 

  14. Scalpeledge says:

     @  Yddh……….. your response just reinforces the  authors point…..if you don’t like it why don’t YOU  leave the UK. 

    1. Tom Cee says:

      thats yo answer to racism? Leave? seriously i find this ridicous , all the world you find brits being trated like royality, come to england oh you leave! Majority of British people are selfish and racist!

  15. Jason says:

    I was so sorry to see misha b go.  I have been fighting racism for last 30 years in this country.  It is so sad to see loose because she is black.  She is the best among the pack, no doubt.  The country is going backward

    1. Guy Lambert says:

      Well the continue the fight somewhere it is legitimate. This is really not the place to do it because The X Factor is NOT racist

  16. Pops says:

    Stupid comments…so she got this far being black but cant win because she is black

  17. Tom Cee says:

    i TOTALLY AGREE I hope a US based record label takes her on, MISHA dont let these racist idiots get to you!!

  18. Craigjones says:

    oh my god has no one seen the colour of the favourite to win Marcus….what a load of old toss looking for a racist angle that isnt there  get over yourself

  19. Niki says:

    Misha is definitely too black to win the competition. I lived in the UK for two years and from an outsider (white) perspective I must say that there is a lot of resentment toward the Blacks. Of course, it would be offensive and unfair to call the entire nation racist, but it can’t be denied that a lot of Britons have issues with the Blacks.

  20. Ignorance is NOT bliss says:

    What the hell? Misha B left in 4TH PLACE out of HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of audtioness because she is black? So why is Marcus still there? Why are 2 members of Little Mix still there? Nothing to do with talent, oh no…that would be too easy wouldn’t it? Oh forgive me, they have white parents or grandparents or 2nd cousins twice removed…somewhere in those gene pools are white people so that HAS to be the reason.

    Bad Leona Lewis wheeled out her white mother to support her cause. She had a ‘Mariah Carey type voice’ which is the reason she has been so successful. Alexandra Burke only won because of Cheryl Cole. I see you did not mention JLS who came 2nd that year….why not? Too much of a struggle to justify 4 all-black finalists?

    Kelly Rowland is too good and too darkto be there? US X Factor is another smokescreen for racism? Where on earth do you get your ideas from?

    Out of all the finalists this year, Misha B is without question the most commercially marketable, the most versatile and the one most equipped to cross over into various genres. To suggest that the colour of her skin is the sole reason for her place in a talent competition (let alone the other acts you have mentioned) is suggesting that these people only ‘make it’ (or not) based on the tone of their skin colour, that talent and their hard work to finish in the final 5 in a national talent competition means nothing, who exactly are you insulting by insinuating this? Because it surely isn’t the audience.

    I, as a person of not only mixed heritage, not only a mother of a mixed race child, but a true music lover of all genres, find your article degrading, disgusting, insulting and the epitome of ignorance.

    But then maybe because I am not ‘fully black’ I am bound to say that I suppose, that I could never begin to understand, that the colour of my skin means I will defend this suggestion of racism yada yada yada… (this is the retort I expect from the level of education I am dealing with here).

    Truth is you have absolutely no idea why or why not the public vote the way they do, but carry on with your wild, ridiculous assumptions, because the only person who is creating segregation here is you.

  21. Guy Lambert says:

    Your desperation to prove that somehow Britain is racist if they don’t put her through to the final is laughable. You clutch at straws to explain Alexandra and Leona’s wins, by desperately associating them to white people. It’s utterly absurd. Mischa B got to the final 4 – so British people can’t be THAT racist can they? Or maybe they are, and they really hate the Irish because Janet went. Or maybe they love mixed-race-homosexuals like Marcus? Or they hate fat people, so got rid of Craig?

    Seriously, this is weak weak journalism. It’s based on your belief that Mischa is amazing and so if other people can’t see that, they’re racists.

    Very poor. Very poor indeed.

  22. Del says:

    I’m actually Black and British and this is the best article I have read on this year’s X-factor and basically explains truth.

    Racism and prejudice in Britain is more subtle and hidden than any country in the world because British white people are smarter at hiding it. Brits express their prejudice in private with no consequence to themselves, they are just as bigotted as any nation in the world. White brits didn’t vote Misha B because she was too black for them and prefer a blonde singer and lighter skinned mixed raced contestants to win and a telephone vote gives them the privacy for their prejudice not to be challenged. Even hardcore racist Brits know it is wrong to be openly racist and this the problem with British society. I worked for the Met Police in London and they had training that said it was okay to be racist as long as you don’t express it.  When people are more subtle with their racism you find it harder to challenge and this is the Brits attitude towards prejudice. If you can prove it for certain it can’t be racism. So white Brits make the excuse unless it open and obvious racism it can’t be.

    So England has the highest percentage of young black University graduates in the western world, even more than the USA, but the only wealthy black people the UK has are soccer players.  There are only 2 black members of parliment, a far lower percentage than the Black population make up of the UK, less black people in positions of power and management now than 30 years ago and even in soccer where black players make up 40% of the players, there is only 1 black head coach out of 100 professional soccer teams. White Brits will respond to this like they responded to your article, if it isn’t blatant racism it can be racism so only KKK and Nazis are racist in white Brits eyes.

    The best example of British hidden racism is the show Midsommer Murders. This is a long running popular show. The producer accidently let slip in a magazine interview,  that it was policy not to hire any ethnic actors for the show, including extras. The producer admitted he didn’t like to see black faces on his show. If hadn’t had mentioned  it, people wouldn’t have known. No wonder Idris Elba and Chiwetel Ejiofor have to come to America for good roles.

  23. Fithian says:

    What an annoying site this is. You have to wait for all the social widgets to load and when they have you can’t read tha article because the left widget covers a 5th of the article.
    Pick what you want to do; have an online magazine or an online link to other peoples sites.

  24. Ji-yeon So says:

    That has to one of the most pathetic pieces of rubbish I’ve read in quite some time. You keep bantering on about racism, and yet you keep generalising “white Brits.” Has it ever occurred to you that people who look for racism, are in fact, racist themselves? And I know for a fact that I am correct in my assertion, mainly due to you only focussing on black people. What about the other races? Don’t they matter?

    I’m Korean; I’m from South Korea; I work; I study hard at university; I contribute towards society (I help with fund raisers, etc.); and I’m not racist in the slightest. And I, myself, see no racism here at all. A black person gets voted off a terrible, overrated talent show such as the X Factor, and talk of racism sparks… To be honest with you, It’s to be expected by now. Next talent show that has a black person voted off, how long do you think until people begin crying racism? Not very long, I say!

    Looking for racism when there is none to be had – absolutely pathetic. 

  25. Lottiespillotti Speaks says:

    XFactor has always been a personality contest, pretty much like all reality shows. Misha B’s personality is not agreeable enough for viewers, so what! A dominant personality will get her more success in the real world. I can tell you for a start that soppy and nice won’t cut it in an industry where the meat-dressed Lady Gaga calls the shots.  

    The most successful Ex-X Factor competitors are rarely the nice guys who win. It’s those with a little more steel.

    As for colour, if it really was an issue in the real world then Rhianna wouldn’t dominate the charts, and Cee Loo Green would be a busker. Don’t bury Alexandra’s hard work and talent under the excuse that it was a vote for Cheryl Cole, that’s just insulting.  

    If you download most of your music, most times you don’t even know what colour the damn singer is. People just want really good music. Let her talent do the talking and don’t use her colour as an excuse- if she works hard enough she will succeed. If she doesn’t then she can release a Christmas album for 2012 with the other XFactorejects.

  26. Calil13 says:

    There are going to be a lot of people who think this article is rubbish and that’s because they’re truly ignorant to what’s really going on. These are the same people who think racism doesn’t even exist anymore and the world is a level playing field.

    Misha was definitely too black to win-  she wasn’t the acceptable face of blackness  in that her skin tone was too dark, she rapped, she didn’t have long straight flowing hair and was fat .  Tulisa, who was threatened by Misha’s talent ,decided to sabotage her chances of winning the competition by reinforcing and bringing to the fore many of the negative racial ideas  people secretly uphold in Britain when she told us  that Misha was intimdating contestants back stage.

    That was the day Misha lost the competition.

  27. Geoffrey Jackson says:

    Here’s how Misha B is “too black” to win The X Factor UK: She’s too talented, too confident, too motivated, too individual, too dedicated, too in-your-face, too strong, too innovative, too much of a performer, too edgy, too up-to-date, too good a singer, too darn’great, simply too Misha B.

    Pick up the YouTube videos of “misha b heaven g-a-y”, the gig she performed a few days after leaving The X Factor, and, while you are watching with your jaw down on the floor, remind yourself that this is a 19 year old absolute beginner from a troubled background in which only her wonderful aunt held her life together.

    All X Factor leavers do their G-A-Y gig.   None had ever truly raised the roof;  Misha B blew that roof clean off.  Friends who got tickets are still shaken up by a powerful effect the world will soon feel: “The Misha B Experience”.

  28. Hendawg says:

    it is a difficult one, I think it was more that accusations of bullying and her strong personality made it plausible. Tulisa really messed up with Louie Walsh when they said it -people take to heart what celebs say and then combined with how gulliable the people that read the sun,heat etc.  They saw it as plausible-especially considering how great she was at the singing.  I do also think her style has been heard quite a lot, amelia, little mix and marcus collins had a much fresher style.

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