Cheryl Cole gets the thumbs up
Simon Cowell's decision to axe Cheryl Cole from the US X Factor has been criticised - following an airing of the opening episode.
Some US critics who saw a preview of the show ahead of its broadcast said that Cheryl outshined her replacement, Nicole Scherzinger.
The New York Times wrote: "In the premiere she just kind of disappears mid-show, without much explanation, and suddenly Nicole Scherzinger of Pussycat Dolls is in her chair.
"It's a downgrade. Ms Cole showed glimmers of being interesting."
The Los Angeles Times writes: "Cowell has said he replaced Cole because she seemed 'bewildered,' but on a first impression, she is much more interesting than Scherzinger, if only for her fabulous Geordie accent."
The Chicago Tribune said of Cheryl: "She seemed perfectly at ease with the other judges - and perfectly easy to understand."
The New York Times described Welsh host Steve Jones as "utterly irrelevant", while the Boston Herald said he "is so far in the background, he might as well be on another network".
The comments came after a recent interview with Piers Morgan, in which Simon said that Cheryl looked "a bit bewildered" on the judging panel.
He told Piers: "Not everyone's like you Piers. You come to a country like America, it's a big deal - it takes a while to adjust and I took the view along with a few other people that she would be more comfortable back in the UK."