On March 10, 2014, Cheryl Cole confirmed reports that she has returned to "The X Factor" U.K. judging panel in 2014. On her Instagram account, she posted a photo of herself with her hands around Simon Cowell's neck, with this accompanying message: "GUESS WHAT!!.. I'm baaaacccckkkkk!!!! #iMayActuallyRingHisNeck #XFactor2014 #leggooo."
Cowell tweeted on March 10, 2014: “It’s official! Cheryl is back. Be careful what you wish for.”
According to the Daily Mirror, Cole signed a one-season deal to return to "The X Factor" U.K. for £1.5 million (which is $2.5 million in U.S. dollars.) An unnamed source told the Daily Mirror: “The deal was done over the weekend. Simon is absolutely delighted to have her back on the judging panel. Over the last 18 months, Cheryl and Simon have got back in touch and slowly repaired their relationship. And in January they had dinner with Peter Fincham at Simon’s London house. There has been to-ing and fro-ing but the deal was finally done in the last 48 hours.
"It’s all very last minute but now there’s due to be an announcement, It’s really exciting. Simon is delighted that she is back. With him and her on the panel it’s a dream ticket. Simon was always very sad about the way things turned out over there and especially the way his relationship disintegrated. Slowly but surely they got things on an even keel and now they are stronger than ever. It was destiny they would be working together again.”
On Feb. 7, 2014, the same day it was announced that "The X Factor" U.S. was cancelled, Cowell announced that he is returning to "The X Factor" U.K. judging panel in 2014. He is replacing Gary Barlow, who was a judge on the show from 2011 to 2013. Barlow quit "The X Factor" U.K. because he said he wanted to focus on his music career, which includes a new album and tour from his singing group Take That.
Louis Walsh (who has been an "X Factor" judge since the show's 2004 debut) is mostly likely to continue as a judge on the show in 2014. Cowell confirmed in February 2014 that Nicole Scherzinger (who became a judge on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2012) has left the show.
Cole replaces Sharon Osbourne, who returned to the show in 2013, which she said was her last year on the show. Osbourne was originally a judge on "The X Factor" U.K. from 2004 to 2007. In 2008, Osbourne was replaced by Cole, who was originally a judge on "The X Factor U.K. from 2008 to 2010.
Meanwhile, Olly Murs is in talks to become a judge on "The X Factor" U.K., according to a report published by The Sun on Feb. 16, 2014.
If Murs becomes a permanent judge on "The X Factor" U.K., then he will become the first former "X Factor" U.K. contestant to have that position. (A few former "X Factor" U.K. contestants, including Leona Lewis and Alexandra Burke, have been guest judges or guest mentors on the show.) Murs came in second place on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2009, and he has since had hits in several countries. His biggest international hit was the song "Troublemaker." He co-hosted "The Xtra Factor" in 2011 and 2012. Murs was a guest mentor on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2013.
Cowell was Murs' "X Factor" mentor when Murs was a contestant on the show. Murs is also signed to Syco Music, which is the record company co-owned by Cowell and Sony Music.
Several British tabloids, including the Daily Mirror, have reported that Rita Ora rejected an offer to become a judge on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2013 and 2014.
Cowell (who was originally a judge on "The X Factor" U.K. from 2004 to 2010) and Cole (who was a judge on the show from 2008 to 2010) left "The X Factor" U.K. judging panel to become judges on "The X Factor" U.S. in 2011. Cole was notoriously fired from "The X Factor" U.S. after just a few weeks on the job. She has since said in several interviews, on Twitter, and in her 2012 memoir "Cheryl: My Story" that she never wanted to work with Cowell again because of the way he treated her during the firing. But now it's clear that Cole has some self-esteem problems since she has gone back to work for Cowell, whom she has described many times as a disrespectful and manipulative boss.
It's obvious that Cowell is hoping to recapture "The X Factor" U.K.'s glory days by getting most of the judging panel that the show had from 2008 to 2010, when show's ratings were at their peak. Ratings for "The X Factor" U.K. have been on a steady decline since 2011, and Cowell obviously wants to use Cole to help boost the ratings. The problem is that many "X Factor" viewers on the Internet are saying that they don't want Cole back on the show because they would prefer someone who has more talent and credibility in the music business. (See comments at the end of this article.)
The only reason why Cole would go back to "The X Factor" is that she is fell for Cowell's oldest trick in the book, which he uses to lure people back into his life after he has treated them badly: He dangles a lot of money in front of people he has used and emotionally abused, and they put their self-esteem aside for the sake of greed and getting a piece of Cowell's fortune. It certainly explains why he has a harem of ex-girlfriends who are still pathetically clinging to him.
However, money cannot buy self-respect. Most women would not willingly go back to a boss who has a long history of firing women and subjecting them to public humiliation. People with healthy self-esteem and strong character just don't do that.
In 2012, Cole made an appearance on "The X Factor" U.K. as a guest mentor assisting Barlow. However, Cole made it clear in statements to the media and on her Twitter account that she only did that guest appearance as a personal favor to her close friend Barlow, not because she wanted to wanted to please Cowell.
In 2013, Cole settled a $2.3 million lawsuit that she filed in 2012 against "The X Factor" U.S. for non-payment of salary. Cole's "X Factor" U.S. contract stated that she was to be paid for two seasons, even if she got fired. Cole claimed in the lawsuit that she was only paid for one season. Terms of the the settlement were not disclosed to the public.
In 2013, Cole parted ways with her U.S. management, which advised her not to go back to working with Cowell. If Cole is working with Cowell again, it shows she has low self-esteem, she's desperate for money, and she's getting bad advice from her current management.
Surely, there are better ways for her to make money than to go back into the viper pit known as working for Cowell, who fired her for no good reason other than he admitted that he wanted her to go back to being a judge on the British "X Factor."
In her memoir, Cole described how her ex-husband, Ashely Cole, repeatedly cheated on her during their marriage. And yet, she still got back together with him in 2011, a year after they divorced. (They got back together but did not remarry.) Not surprisingly, their reconciliation failed, and they broke up again after reuniting for about six months. Cheryl Cole is making the same mistake by going back to work for Cowell.
Maybe Cheryl Cole needs to learn the meaning of that saying: "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."
Here are examples of Internet reactions to Cole going back to "The X Factor" U.K. judging panel:
From the Daily Mirror website:
"Why??? shes rubbish!!"
"Not hilarious. sad."
"Does anyone actually care."
"Wow this is terrible news."
"Truly, if anyone cares reading this…whatever."
"Ugh… I hope it doesn’t mean Nicole Scherzinger is getting the axe. She’s been the best mentor the UK edition has ever had. Most people watching the show would agree with me. She’s fun and she knows how to mentor contestants. Cheryl is cute at the beginning but then she’s getting insufferable."
"Is this show still going?!?! It saddens me that a show so explicitly designed to make as much money for Cowell as possible is still accepted entertainment. Just awful."