Just as many people predicted, "The X Factor" U.K. 2012 winner James Arthur has returned to Twitter. His return to the social media network happened just two months after he had a meltdown and announced that was quitting Twitter and that his management would be tweeting on his behalf. On Jan. 3, 2014, Arthur announced his return to Twitter when he posted a series of messages:
"I'm back. How is everyone doing!? I've missed you!! Tour rehearsals are going great! Can't wait to see all of your faces in the coming weeks ❤️ #LOVE. On the road to Bedford to do last few production rehearsals then it all starts Sunday!! SOLD OUT UK AND EUROPEAN TOUR!! #LOVE.
"I wanna say thanks to all of my fans that have been patient whilst I've been taking time away from social networking. I've seen all the love and support you've been showin and it warms my heart for real :) New year New start! Let's show em it's just begun! Je vous aime."
Arthur launches his 2014 European tour on Jan. 5. He added on Twitter: "Who's coming on tour?"
As previously reported, Arthur blamed fame for his recent meltdown, according to his older sister Sian, who talked about his fragile mental state in an interview with the Sunday Mirror published on Dec. 1, 2013.
As previously reported, a spokesperson for Arthur announced on Nov. 23, 2013, that Arthur cancelled his upcoming appearances for the next several days. This statement was issued: “Unfortunately, James Arthur has been diagnosed with acute exhaustion and instructed to rest for several days by his doctor. Regretfully, he has been forced to cancel all engagements during this period. James would like to apologize to his fans for any disappointment caused to them by these cancellations and he hopes to get back to full health as soon as possible.”
Arthur's cancellations and health crisis came just one week after Arthur announced that he is leaving Twitter and that his management will be tweeting on his behalf from now on. However, most people on the Internet who are reacting to the news have doubts that Arthur is really quitting Twitter for good, since they think his fans will convince him to return and he is too outspoken to stay off of Twitter permanently.
Arthur's sister Sian told the Sunday Mirror: “Sometimes I wish he’d never won 'X Factor.' Despite finally having what he’s always wanted, he says he feels like a caged animal surrounded by yes-men and is really lonely. He turned down media training and I think he has really struggled with this new world. The sad fact is he still doubts himself and fears ending up back in that bedsit. I think he struggles to admit that he’s not coping.”
Arthur returned to the public eye with a performance of his third single, "Recovery," on "The X Factor" U.K. on Dec. 1, 2013. During his appearance on "The X Factor" U.K., he made another public apology for his controversial behavior throughout the year, included numerous feuds that he instigated with on Twitter
According to the Sunday Mirror, there was an online petition (signed by more than 9,000 people) demanding that Arthur be permanently banned from "The X Factor" because of a homophobic remark that he made about rapper Micky Worthless.
Arthur's sister commented to the Mirror: “We’ve been so worried about him this week, he’s been diagnosed with depression and anxiety attacks. He got so stressed about people thinking he was homophobic that doctors stepped in and told him to rest as he had acute exhaustion. My mum was ready to drive down in case he did something to himself. He put it really simply to me, he just said, ‘Fame has mentally broken me.’”
She added that Arthur has attempted suicide more than once in the past: “There were a few times where he tried to kill himself. Our sister Jasmin lived with him for a bit and was there on certain occasions. She was around for some of the worst stuff. It’s hard to help somebody who is doing everything he can do to not be helped.”
Over the past several months, Arthur (who is 25) has been embroiled in feud after feud because of his insulting remarks in the media and on Twitter about other entertainers. In December 2012, he and Matt Cardle (winner of "The X Factor" U.K. in 2010) had a war of words on Twitter after Arthur said in an interview that the previous male winners of "The X Factor" U.K. don't make good albums.
On separate occasions in 2013, Arthur posted angry, profanity-laced messages denying tabloid reports that he had a one-night stand with a woman he met on Twitter; that he hired prostitutes; and that he asked a 17-year-old girl on Twitter to send him topless photos of herself. All of the females in these incidents gave detailed tabloid interviews alleging that Arthur did these things.
In September 2013, a Twitter user accused Arthur of verbal abuse after the person commented that One Direction sells more music than Arthur. (One Direction, the world's best-selling act from "The X Factor," came in third place on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2010 and is signed to Syco Music, the same record company that signed Arthur.)
Arthur then clarified his comment by tweeting: "I have nothing but respect for 1D. They are great lads.”
On Oct. 17, 2013, Arthur slammed boy band Kingsland Road (a contestant act on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2013) by tweeting: "Im sorry but this Kingsland Road have me cringing to the max, they aren’t good enough. There time must come to an end this Sunday #xfactor."
Kingsland Road ended up in the bottom two that week and was eliminated a few weeks later. (Kingsland Road ultimately came in in ninth place in the competition.)
On Nov. 7, 2013, it was revealed that Arthur had a private Twitter feud with One Direction's Louis Tomlinson. Arthur tweeted, “I have nothing against one direction fans or the band itself I have an issue with one member ... They insulted me when I had nothing against them so now I don’t pull any punches when I’m asked ... Just said some things via text and the things that were said warrant my dislike for them so that’s it.. I’m not being ungrateful."
Arthur then tweeted a comment that was deleted: “Louis started acting like a little bitch after I told him he was about merch not music.”
Not surprisingly, Arthur got a firestorm of criticism from One Direction fans. He tweeted this response: “You are all correct I wouldn’t be where I am if it weren’t for Louis Tomlinson.. Not the years of working hard in the real world.. If you are now not a fan of me because of how honest I am then your not a fan that I want anyway. I don’t care for markets and business. I make music. Love it or hate it that’s your human right but If you were a fan and now you aren’t then be my guest and hate me I don’t care."
Arthur then went on another Twitter rant: “F*ck boybands! Bring on the hate I don’t wanna be popular ...Apart from JLS who are genuinely the coolest people I’ve met in music.”
But Arthur's wrath isn't just reserved for boy bands. He then got into a Twitter feud with rapper Micky Worthless.
Here is some of the back-and-forth sniping between the two:
Worthless: “@JamesArthur23 youre an xfactor winner, your album dropped, and youre trying to battle rap??? you are f***ing STUPID!!!”
Arthur: “@mickyworthless my reply was done for a laugh and you get all you’re little rap nerd friends to back you and diss me.. You’re a rapper??”
Worthless: “@JamesArthur23 nah mate, i aint got no one to back me. you put your sh** response out, REAL rappers heard it and they knew it was sh**”
Arthur: ‘@mickyworthless Hahahhaha are you okay in the head?’”
Then on Nov. 16, 2013, in response to the conflict with Worthless, Arthur recording a rap about Worthless that could be considered homophobic because Arthur used the words "f*cking queer" in the lyrics when describing Worthless.
After getting a firestorm of criticism for the homophopic insult, Arthur issued this public apology: “I’m extremely disappointed in myself for being so naïve with the diss track I made… I assure you homophobia is something I do not believe in.”
Arthur then clashed with comedian Frankie Boyle, who tweeted his thoughts on Arthur's feud with Worthless.
Boyle tweeted, "Who is this?…..From the pic I thought it was a child’s drawing of a monster.Sit down &( so far as it’s technically possible) shut your mouth”
Arthur replied, "I was just thinking how handsome you look in yours.. I mean if I was a girl id really want you.”
Boyle tweeted, “@JamesArthur23 Well you look like a post-op Miley Cyrus, so why not get it on? Oh, that’s right, because of your rampant homophobia. Sorry, I beef with playas only. I’ll leave you to the battle rap scene & getting hit so hard your teeth go normal. Nb; Battle raps usually rhyme. Try it. Eg. Arthur goes with carcrash/disaster/ classless arsehole and even 'gay hate slur.'"
Arthur hit back: “@frankieboyle haha how original with the teeth thing. Note to self: sort teeth! Must sort teeth!! Your an old washed up nerd with poor jokes ... @frankieboyle You are a 38 yr old man what are you doing? You know nothing about music and comedy it seems.. I feel sorry for your kids."
Boyle replied: "@JamesArthur23 I feel sorry for them too, because they'll have to watch you in panto next year."
Arthur also got into a texting spat with Lucy Spraggan, who came in ninth place on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2012. Spraggan, who is openly gay, took issue with Arthur's use of a homophobic name calling of Worthless. She exposed their texting argument on Twitter.
Here's a sample of the argument they had:
Arthur: “And for you’re information my album was self-penned'...My album sold 10 times youres in it’s first week so you can f*** off with you’re career sh**e… two faced fickle attention seeker. Dissapear."
Spraggan: “I think you’ll do that far before I do.”
Apparently all the controversy was just too much for Arthur and his management/publicity team, because Arthur then tweeted "#LOVE to my fans but I’m coming off twitter for good. HQ will be doing all my tweets from now on. PEACE!"
All of this nasty public feuding has some people wondering about Arthur's mental health. Arthur has gone public about struggling for years with depression, and he said he had suicidal thoughts after the end of a love affair that he had earlier this year. He has also admitted that he smokes marijuana to help him cope with stress.
Arthur's first single, a cover version of Shontelle's "Impossible," was a worldwide smash, having reached the Top 5 in several countries. In the U.K., Arthur's "Impossible" debuted at No. 1. His second single, "You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Loves You," is also a hit, but not as big as "Impossible."
"You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Loves You" and Arthur's self-titled major-label debut album each debuted at No. 2 in the U.K.
Several media outlets, including the Mirror, have reported that an unknown but significant number of people who bought Arthur's album have requested refunds because they are offended by his combative behavior.