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Top 10 Totally Simon Cowell Moments

VO: Richard Bush WRITTEN BY: Jessica Nosal
He’s TV judge supreme. Welcome to WatchMojo UK, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 totally Simon Cowell moments. Simon has spearheaded some of television’s most popular talent searches, and he’s infamously unafraid to say exactly what he thinks. For this list, we’ve gathered together a sometimes-shocking but always entertaining ensemble of his most memorable moments. Special thanks to our user WordToTheWes for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Totally Simon Cowell Moments


He’s TV judge supreme. Welcome to WatchMojo UK, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 totally Simon Cowell moments.

Simon has spearheaded some of television’s most popular talent searches, and he’s infamously unafraid to say exactly what he thinks. For this list, we’ve gathered together a sometimes-shocking but always entertaining ensemble of his most memorable moments.

#10: Handling the Holistic Vocal Coach
“The X Factor” (2004-)


While Simon’s no stranger to stirring up the trouble himself, he didn’t need to do anything here – except sit back and watch the chaos unfold. Ariel Burdett etched her own spot into “X Factor” folklore when she auditioned back in 2008, as possibly the angriest contestant the show has even seen. She storms in, rattles through a rant and delivers a pretty dismal performance, all while Simon and the rest of the panel watch on open-mouthed. Cowell gets the last laugh though, and sends Ariel packing with some prickly words of his own.

#9: Mel B’s Wedding Night
“America’s Got Talent” (2006-)


You can always expect the unexpected on live TV, but no one was expecting this. A now-notorious moment, it comes after an “America’s Got Talent” performance (by an especially dramatic magician) goes wrong. Mel B’s unimpressed from the outset, and presses her buzzer perhaps a little too early. But then Simon wades in and really pushes the Spice Girl’s buttons, by referencing her wedding night by way of a creative criticism. He got drink thrown over him for his troubles, before Mel stages a walkout. Even the ‘king of cruel’ himself seemed a little sheepish afterwards.

#8: It Wasn’t the Song!
“American Idol” (2002-16, 2018-)


By now, we’re all well aware of Simon’s hard-hitting but often heavy-handed style. But it was moments like this that carved out that character. When a contestant returns to the stage with her mother, unhappy with the criticism that had been dealt her, Simon loses his cool and shouts at her. Twice. His fellow judges try their best to calm the simmering situation, but Cowell clearly isn’t going to back down. He even storms off the stage at one point, but quickly returns to resume the war of words, and to demonstrate a then-trademark lack of compassion.

#7: Simon’s Lap Dance
"Britain's Got Talent" (2007-)


When David Walliams was added to the BGT roster in 2012, he certainly brought something different to the show. But perhaps his most significant contribution is still that he dragged Simon onto the stage itself – a first for the series. But, what act could possibly rouse Cowell from the comfort of his judge’s chair? That’s right, lap dancing. Only Simon’s experience is probably not quite what he had been expecting, as David doubles up alongside the performer. Seeing Simon get embarrassed is a pretty rare occurrence, but he looks suitably awkward here.

#6: The Worst Singer in the World
“American Idol” (2002-16, 2018-)


When Keith Beukelaer walked into the room on “American Idol” in the early 2000s, little did we know that his audition would go down in history – for all the wrong reasons. Keith’s take on “Like a Virgin” had Simon struggling to hide his laughter, while his rendition of “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” prompted Simon to deliver perhaps his most brutal and savage critique ever. However, Keith’s story doesn’t end there! A decade later, he rocks up on “X Factor USA” to blow the judges away with “Baby Got Back”. Happy endings do happen, even with Simon around!

#5: Angry Rachel
“The X Factor” (2004-)


Another massively popular TV talent show; another chance for Simon to deliver some spiky criticism. Only this time, even Cowell’s own critics will’ve likely been on his side. As far as confrontational auditions go, this one probably beats all others. At first, it was Rachel’s attitude that failed to impress Simon. Then it was her singing. Then it was her furious reaction. Rounding on every single judge – especially Sharon Osbourne – she was swiftly shown the door, with Simon handling the hoo-hah as though he’s seen it all before. Because, you know, he has.

#4: Mason Noise
“The X Factor” (2004-)


It was all going so well for Mason Noise. He was well on his way to progressing on “The X Factor” in 2015, after a performance that had the whole crowd on their feet. But then he hit out at how the show was made, got into an extraordinary war of words with Cowell, dropped the mic and made for the exit – with a chorus of boos ringing around the auditorium. Moral of the story, don’t try to beat Simon Cowell in his own back yard. You argue with this man, and you’re gonna lose.

#3: Holding Back the Tears
“The X Factor” (2004-)


While Simon’s character is largely built on his ability to turn brutal honesty into must-see prime-time tele, there’s a soft centre beneath his ruthless façade. And this clip shows exactly that. Josh Daniel took to the “X Factor” stage in 2015 for an especially emotional performance, with plenty of personal meaning. But Josh’s delivery of lyrics on love, loss and heartbreak also hit home with Simon, who was visibly moved throughout. And when it came to giving opinions, Cowell was unusually quiet – preferring to just give his ‘yes’, and head backstage to gather his thoughts.

#2: The Egg Throwing Incident
"Britain's Got Talent" (2007-)


As we’ve already seen, Simon has attracted his fair share of protests down the years. But perhaps none more high-profile than this one, which unfolded during the “Britain’s Got Talent” live final in 2013. With finalists Richard and Adam performing “The Impossible Dream”, violinist Natalie Holt set down her instrument, set toward the judging panel, and started throwing eggs in Simon’s general direction. Suffice to say, it was not part of the act. The demonstration was reportedly fuelled by Holt’s anger at the control Cowell wields over the music industry. Simon clearly wasn’t egg-specting it.

#1: Simon’s Wedding
"Comic Relief" (1988-)


Feeling like a who’s who from his entire career, we finish our Cowell countdown with the Media mogul apparently ready to marry. This “Comic Relief” sketch sees him waiting at the altar, alongside his bride. But who’s under the veil? Just before the big reveal David Walliams barges in, followed by Olly Murs, Dermot O’ Leary… And then the floodgates truly open, with everyone declaring their undying love for the industry icon. A tongue in cheek celebration of one man’s monumental ego, it ends in the only way it ever could.
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