The biggest non-upset upset in UK chart history (or is it just about Christmas number ones?)

Well done everyone! We’ve done it! We’ve beaten the evil kitten-eater Simon Cowell and the winner of his spreadsheet talent contest The Excel Factor, Steve Brookstein, in their bid to get the Christmas number one with their cover of Disney starlet Billy Ray Cyrus’s hit, The Fall. (Yeah, that sentence has too much “spoof”. I know. Well, I haven’t posted properly in a while, I’ve got to get my remaining spoof out before the year ends. Plus I don’t watch X Factor, so only have a vague idea of what actually goes on.)

Anyways, yes, a lot of “us” bought Rage Against The Machine’s Killing In The Name, regardless of whether we liked it or not or remembered the song first time round etc etc. And we drove it to number one, with 50,000 more copies sold than Joe McElderry’s The Climb.

Though why people are calling this a chart upset beats me. Or even a Christmas number one upset. Sure, the X Factor winner has been number one for the last 40 years so this year’s X Factor’s winner was guaranteed it again, even if the winner had been a raisin wearing a woolly hat. But then a Facebook campaign/group started, attracting almost 1 million followers – 500,000 more members than actually bought the single. (Eh?)

So when you expect several hundreds of thousands of people to buy a single and there’s a damn good chance that it hits the top spot – that it actually gets there isn’t that surprising or even that much of an upset. Okay, so it beat what most people expected to be there instead (well, most people prior to December), but it’s just not that surprising. If Lady Gaga – who ended up in the third spot – actually got to number one instead of either single, that would be an upset. If Michael Jackson had suddenly appeared on the Monday in HMV Oxford Street and urged everyone to buy his new single for Christmas and it hit the top spot, that would be an upset. If the number one “spot” magically disappeared and there was NO number one, that would be an upset. If…oh, you get the picture.

And the same goes for Christmas number one upsets in previous years. For example, 1985 is often mentioned as an example – when Shakin’ Stevens Merry Christmas Everyone beat Whitney Houston’s Saving All My Love For You. Upset – what upset? More people bought Shakey’s single.

And it’s about Christmas, at least.

And look at his nice red scarf:

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