‘X Factor’ sets its Top 12 – in order

Well, that was refreshing.

No, not the One Direction performance of “Live While We’re Young”. That was marred by a muted backing track, the obliterating balloon drop, the awkward Drew Brees tie-in that the kids in the audience obviously couldn’t have cared less about, and Mario Lopez’s scripted insistence on making sure that everyone in America was informed that the boy band owed all their success to the acumen of Simon Cowell.

But take a look at what awaits you if you win, X Factor contestants.


No, the aspect of Thursday night’s results show that was novel was revealing the actual viewer tallies, something we never get on shows like American Idol and Dancing with the Stars, a purposeful obfuscation so that they can manipulate the elimination drama.

The X Factor showed us the Top 12. In order. Both 13-year-olds – Carly Rose Sonenclar and Beatrice Miller -- made the cut. All of Simon’s ensemble pod is in. Not only did surprise returnee Diamond White stay in the pack; she finished #4! Jason Brock was your loser. The judges deadlocked between him and CeCe Frey, so they went to the votes and Brock had less. (I thought in case of a tie, Simon had veto power. I’m pretty sure he thought so too.)

So who is your #1 X Factor favorite, America, as we head to the finals? Hold on to your hat, it’s Tate Stevens, a 37-year-old rodeo balladeer. If you haven’t had a chance to catch up with him yet, here he is covering Bon Jovi on Wednesday night’s peformance show.

Hey pardner, can you even see One Direction from where you’re standing?

Here's the draft order for your remaining dozen. America has spoken:

1. Tate Stevens
2. Carly Rose Sonenclar
3. Vino Alan
4. Diamond White
5. Fifth Harmony
6. Emblem3
7. Jennel Garcia
8. Paige Thomas
9. Lyric 145
10. Beatrice Miller
11. Arin Ray
12. CeCe Frey



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