Welcome back to more The X Factor, results as we've finally narrowed down to the Top 10 contestants with Thursday's double elimination. We guessed that Cece and Beatrice would be headed for the chopping block... and we were entirely incorrect. Neither was up for elimination and Cece's survival was particularly shocking. Her reaction was priceless and so was the way she ignored Paige's congratulations as she left the stage. Let the Cece Rehabilitation Tour continue!
Instead, Lyric145 was knocked out early as the last-place finisher after America voted. It's a darn shame that Simon didn't let them write their own songs along the way and Lyric da Queen called it out in her goodbye, saying those lyrics were "snatched away" from them "at the last minute." Simon offered only a smirk in response. We didn't get to see a reaction from L.A., but given his criticism of Simon's coaching, we're guessing his smug level was off the charts.
Following a Taylor Swift performance, Mario and Khloe re-introduced the judges and their contestants and called out, one by one, the acts who were safe. This process, of course, required two full commercial breaks to complete. But the best part by far was Mario completely spoiling the final result by announcing that only Paige or Jennel would move on, despite the fact that Fifth Harmony had not yet been announced as safe. Simon was not happy, to say the least.
For the first time, the sing-off resulted in two solid performances, but the result of the judges' choices was actually stunning. In true X Factor style, check out these performances before we reveal the result:
L.A. and Britney both voted to send Jennel home and Simon decided to stick a knife squarely in Demi's back by forcing her to choose between her acts before he would agree to weigh in. Mario's attempt to prevent this power move was feeble at best. So in an effort to even up the vote, Demi voted to send Paige Thomas home, but Simon quickly ended up Jennel's hopes to bring the votes to 3-1 in favor of Paige.
Good luck looking Paige in the eye next week, Demi! Love, Simon.
See our last round of power rankings here.
10. Paige Thomas – She survived! But honestly, Jennel had been stronger across the entire competition, so it's sad to see Jennel leave. Especially while even more inconsistent acts (hey, Cece!) are still hanging around.
9. Arin Rey – Up two spots from last week
8. Beatrice Miller – Up two spots from last week
7. Diamond White – Down three spots from last week
6. Fifth Harmony – Down one spot from last week
5. Cece Frey – Up seven spots from last week. Seven!
4. Emblem3 – Up two spots from last week
3. Vino Alan – Holding down the #3 spot again
2. Carly Rose Sonneclar – Still unable to top the country star in the making
1. Tate Stevens – Back-to-back weeks at #1! And even better, he gave a shout-out to "Tate Nation," which is officially the best use of "nation" we can remember.
"Let's do it live!" Our favorite judge and host moments from Thursday's episode
– This was a trainwreck of an hour-long show on the hosting side of things. Khloe was apparently tired of being ignored, so she resorted to repeating instructions to Jennel and Paige to get off stage to prepare for their sing-off.
– As the sing-off was set to begin, Demi had no idea which of her two contestants was slated to sing first, which resulted in a painful intro.
– Mario dropped some math on us. Three percent of the votes separated the top four contestants. And less than a third of one percent separated the top two. Time to call Nate Silver in for our predictions.
1. Are you sad to see Jennel go home?
2. Was Simon cruel to Demi?
3. Cece jumped seven spots this week... how?
4. Are you part of Tate Nation?