X Factor ‘Bully’ Misha B Will Kill The Sunshine If She Does Not Win
X FACTOR Monday: the Daily Mirror leads with news of Misha Bryan, the Manchester wannabe dubbed Misha B by the marketing-minded judges and a nod to text messaging. The front-page headline informs us:
“I WAS A BULLY..BUT I’LL CHANGE”
That ellipse was teasing. Anorak had supposed that in the lust for ratings and something original, we might have got:
“I was a bully.. And I loved it”
“I was bully.. Vote for me or I’ll kick your face in”
Instead we get the usual recovery position in which the X Factor starlet is presented as a victim. The opening line of Mark Jefferies’ report tells us:
BROUGHT up by an aunt, Misha Bryan was 10 when she discovered her mum had abandoned her at just three months…
That’s an undeniably sad story. And it’s why she became a bully, right?
Speaking of the trouble she got into as a 15-year-old at Trinity High in Hulme, Manchester, she said: “At school I was bullied – and I did bully people myself, but I am a different person now.”
So. The story of Misha being a bully is the story of her having been bullied. The contestant adds:
“When I was younger, the stuff that I had to deal with was tough. You make mistakes and learn from them. I got into arguments and I used to get called to see the headteacher. I got into situations where there was a lack of communication and a lack of understanding.”
“Sometimes I would get sent home just to take time out. At any age you get into conflicts.”
This PR offensive is the X Factor’s attempt to rescue the show’s one decent singer from allegations that she’s not all that pleasant. On the weekend’s show, Tulisa Contostavlos – whose NDubz’s co-star Dappy once threatened to have a woman hurt and who told us that her dream would be to slap anyone making a negative comment about her – says:
“I think you are very competitive and I’ve seen a different side of you backstage.You being so feisty can come across as quite mean to certain contestants and I’ve been told by a few this week there’s been a few mean comments towards them.”
Misha’s handlers prepare the script. Says Misha:
“Saturday’s experience will make me stronger. I really looked up to Tulisa and the way she has goes on about girl power, but I feel the situation could have been dealt with a lot better. Being called an X Factor bully on national TV was not fair. I know I am not a bad person. Tulisa hurt my feelings because there’s always two sides to the story. I’m here for the music. Things do get heated backstage, but I’m going to take on board what they’ve said and take it in my stride.”
She then adds, and this seems unfortunate:
“Coming on to this programme has turned a dream into reality. I hope the public see me for who I am now.”
Well, we only see what we are shown.
But Misha and her puppet masters are constructing a sympathetic back story:
“I am not an overconfident person now and I am not a bully any more. I started a girl group and people thought I was tough at school because I stood up for myself. We used to create music but also had a reputation for being a bit scary. I realised that I could either channel my life into music or go into a darker place. I had got to a crossroads in my life and I chose to change… I still feel really sorry for any hurt I may have caused in the past, but I have tried really hard to turn my life around and become a better person. I love music and this is my passion and I really want to make a difference to people’s lives. Every day I think positively, and try to push negativity away.”
And if that is not enough:
Misha revealed she hoped to start the Dream, Believe and Achieve Foundation – to help young people who have had a tough start in life and to show them that “there’s sunshine beyond the rain”. She said: “I want to thank everyone who has supported me and believed in me so far and I hope I can continue to do them proud.”
Only Louis Walsh also called her bully. But now he realises:
“Lots of things are said backstage that I don’t know about. I shouldn’t have called Misha a bully and I apologise.”
Do you see? The singer who was called a bully is now the victim of bullying.
The message is clear: Vote Misha…Or The Sunshine Beyond The Rain Dies.