I was waiting until the live shows to write about The X Factor, but after spending last night screaming at my television I figured I’d fast track some posting.

The X Factor has had its critics, especially those who applauded the “resting” of Australian Idol, but I was thrilled to see another musical talent show on Aussie television. I’d watched all the auditions and picked my favourites, and was really enjoying the process. At least I was until last night, when it seemed that the best performers wouldn’t make it to the live shows after all.

With the exception of Natalie Imbruglia, every judge had a few dog acts. I just didn’t expect them to make the final cut.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 30: (L-R) The cast of 'The X Factor' Guy Sebastian, Natalie Imbruglia, Ronan Keating and Kyle Sandilands pose during a media call on July 30, 2010 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mike Flokis/Getty Images)

My first disappointment came when Guy Sebastian cut Jahmaking it Funky, a band that hadn’t put a foot wrong in the competition thus far. Criticising them for sticking to reggae seems a bit hypocritical to me when bands like Mahogany and Kharizma are sticking to R ‘n’ B. But there were more shocks to come when Guy opted to put Luke and Joel into the finals over Lazy J and Big Guy. I wanted to get behind Luke and Joel as a fellow Novacastrian, but they just haven’t delivered. Lazy J and Big Guy had their flaws too, but at least they showed some originality. As far as I can see it, Guy has one serious contender in Mahogany. Kharizma aren’t bad, but everything they can do Mahogany simply do better.

There were more shocks to come when Ronan Keating decided to give Altiyan Childs yet another chance. I just don’t get it. He hasn’t remembered the lyrics once, and even when he does perform he seems like a bit of a poser. I couldn’t believe he made it through the auditions, so I’m shocked to see him get to the main event. Something tells me he’s going to go pretty early.

But my biggest shocks came when Kyle did the culling. I don’t claim to know everything there is to know about music, but I know what I like. And what I liked was Darcy, TJ, and George. Three of my favourite competitors, now all gone. Kyle has a snowball’s chance in hell of winning this thing.

Which left Natalie, who couldn’t put a foot wrong because her group was so strong. Still, I was thrilled to see her put through the stand-outs, Sarah and Hayley. Any one of the other girls could have easily got that third place, so I’m happy there.

I was excited about The X Factor, but after last night’s show I’m feeling deflated. We were meant to be looking for performers with something special, and there seems to be only a handful left that fit the bill. What do you think of the judges’ decisions?