Which X Factor Winner Will Kill Themselves First?
On Friday, Joe McElderry became the fourth of X Factor's seven past winners to get Simon Cowell's bloodied shovel over the back of his head. I say that in a purely metaphorical sense, of course, but did you know that bookies will take bets on pretty much anything these days? Yeah, you can even bet on what colour the Queen's wedding hat's gonna be, or on which one of a group of semi-famous and emotionally vulnerable people will be the first to take his or her own life.
Where did I find a bookmaker shady enough to give me odds on such an unethical gamble? Well, the first betting shop I walked into, actually; the man at William Hill pointing me in the direction of a garage out back where another gentleman gave me this:
If that betting slip's not enough info, my new friend (who for obvious reasons wished to remain anonymous), also took a few minutes to explain his logic. Here are the runners and riders:
LEONA LEWIS - 50,000/1
"This one's won Grammys hasn't she? Winning a bet on her killing herself would be like winning the lottery – a once in a lifetime type thing. She's still really famous, so she seems pretty safe. Tell me one famous person who's killed themselves recently? McQueen? Yeah, fair shout. I guess with these things you can never really tell."
ALEXANDRA BURKE and MATT CARDLE - 40,000/1
"These two will have to have the same price I'm afraid, there's very little to separate them. She's definitely been doing okay, and Matt is the most recent winner, so though you can't tell yet what fate may have him store for him, he overcame a tumour when he was two and survived, so he's hard. And thankful. And in my experience, hard plus thankful doesn't equal suicide."
JOE McELDERRY - 35,000/1
"Divorced parents, check; gay, check... Oh shit, this one is 19?! He's got plenty of time to get back in the saddle. Man-up son, you've got the rest of your life ahead of you, stop moping about and get that album finished. Then again, I suppose there's a chance the gravity of the situation could weigh heavy on young shoulders. Let's just hope he doesn't try to lighten the load by throwing himself out of a window."
SHAYNE WARD - 30,000/1
"He's doing alright, isn't he? If I remember correctly he was always a pretty unspectacular bloke, so that lessens the chances of him making a show of himself. He's got a girlfriend too, so that's probably a big consolation for him. There's probably more chance of him becoming the first ex-X Factor winner to become a taxi driver than to top himself."
LEON JACKSON - 25,000/1
"I think this guy was an outsider, but he still won, right? That might have made him even prouder of his victory, but then again he did find out he'd been dropped through the 'papers, poor bastard. Kind of a dick move, don't you think? Also, being named the 'Second Biggest Reality TV Flop Of All Time' last year couldn't have helped. Who won? I think it was Steve Brookstein."
STEVE BROOKSTEIN - 20,000/1
"Okay, so this guy is 42 now, and he was dropped by SyCo four months after the release of his album. He's also putting the finishing touches to a book called X Factor Nightmares: The Manipulations. The Greed. The Perceptions. Chances are he's gonna drop the bomb first. What's left for him to do after the book comes out? The air of finality could prove fatal in this case. Without wanting to will the poor sod into affirmative action, of course."