The Shmooze

Why Is Jewish 'X-Factor' Contestant So Unpopular?

By Nathan Jeffay

  • Print
  • Share Share

Kate Middleton, fiancée of Prince William, is old news. The British public is fixated on another celebrity Kate — a 24-year-old Jewish woman named Katie Waissel.

Rarely in the history of television talent shows has so much attention been focused on a single contestant.

Waissel is a singer on the television show “ X-Factor,” the British equivalent of “American Idol.” She grew up in Jewish youth movements, and as you’ll see from this interview with the Jewish Chronicle, as recently as January had the more heimishe last name Vogel. She seems like the nice Jewish-girl-next-door type.

But the British public doesn’t think so. She has ranked at the bottom in the public vote on four occasions — an “X Factor” unpopularity record. On each occasion, she had to take part in a “sing-off” against the other low-ranked contestant, and has been kept in the completion because judges “saved” her. A Facebook group called “It’s easier to get rid of Chlamydia than it is Katie Waissel” has almost a quarter of a million fans. (Just for the record, nobody serious is suspecting anti-Semitism, though there has been a tabloid story that claimed “race” is playing a part.)

On Sunday, she heard the happy news that after this performance she wasn’t in the bottom two (note the yiddishism when she says shtick instead of stick). But the joy was short-lived. She’s now has a new crisis on her hands. The British press has dug up that her 81-year-old maternal grandmother Sheila Vogel is apparently a prostitute. As the Daily Mail says, “It could only have happened to Katie.”


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Katie Waissel, Facebook, American Idol, X-Factor

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • What's it like to be Chagall's granddaughter?
  • Is pot kosher for Passover. The rabbis say no, especially for Ashkenazi Jews. And it doesn't matter if its the unofficial Pot Day of April 20.
  • A Ukrainian rabbi says he thinks the leaflets ordering Jews in restive Donetsk to 'register' were a hoax. But the disturbing story still won't die.
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.