Well, there you are. The X Factor finally managed to mangle Janet Devlin. It was clear from the very beginning that she was a star in the making.
Our eyes weren't mistaken. Nor were our ears. There was something there vocally and in what seemed a frail personality, which was special, engaging, and quite beautiful in a way we were only beginning to learn how to understand.
What's also clear, though, is that everything that happened on her X Factor, er, journey was way off-kilter. No wonder Janet says she's glad to be out of the show. There was a series of horrific make-overs - from the red hair to the Doc Martens and shorts combo - each of which was bizarre and only succeeded in compounding the preceding error of judgment. It's hard to think of a single performance where she looked even remotely comfortable.
Then there were the song choices. X Factor has shows themed on certain types of music - Harry Hill joked that it would be nice when Marcus Collins turned up next week with an accordion as it was Sea-Shanty night. Yes, the show is meant to stretch the vocal and 'showmanship' abilities of the contestants. But that's no excuse for the strange song-list handed to Janet over the weeks.
Even the Queen song, Somebody To Love, was a poor selection for her particular vocal charm. These Are The Days Of Our Lives would have been better. Cyndi Lauper's Time After Time would have been another gift. Or Tracey Chapman or Suzanne Vega. Sting's Fields of Gold rather than his Every Breath You Take. But that last song choice is interesting. Whatever else it is, it is not a love song. It is a song about emotional stalking, disappointment, threat and revenge. It's only a song for a female if that female is (or was) someone like Amy Winehouse.
But someone thought that song would suit Janet. It didn't. They don't. And so these were the added pressures heaped on this young girl, leading to uncertainty and lack of self-confidence where there used to be simplicity, musicality, artistry and beauty.
It's an odd thing, really. The X Factor talks about 'artists' all the time. Everyone is an 'artist' - the judges, all the acts (of course), the dancers, the presenters, even the audience thinks they are artists too ... only Louis Walsh passed on the description when he said he wasn't an artist, just a manager of artists and so knew what he was talking about.
And, then, when a true artist comes along - as opposed to a performer or an entertainer, who have their own value - the X Factor doesn't seem to be able to handle it, or understand it, or even be comfortable with it. Or her. Because it's Janet I'm talking about and Janet is that rare thing - a true artist with a peculiar appeal, a way of delivering a melody and a lyric which is compelling, inventive, new and just, well, lovely. Her performance in Sunday's sing-off of Snow Patrol's Chasing Cars was astonishing.
The funny thing is, this isn't just Norn Iron solidarity. Sunday night was the only time Janet appeared in the bottom two in the popular vote after an unfortunate weekend of performances. For her rival, Misha B, it was her third time there and on each occasion she has been saved by the judges, not by the public.
The public, in other words, had no problem identifying the gift Janet has. And whatever it is that she has, it showed through the glare of X Factor razzmatazz and it worked with ordinary people, sitting at home in Bermondsey, Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, and everywhere else the show is airing.
It's great that Janet entered the auditions to begin with; great too that she was able to showcase her talent at a national level for so long. It's a pity the show itself wasn't able to understand that it had already found what it was set up to discover - a star, ready-made, with a long career at the top ahead of her.
Janet has made it already. We are going to hear her voice for the next 40 years.
Get used to it, world.