'X Factor': Fans and judges divided over rocker's 'nutty' take on Britney classic

The rocker gave a very different take on the Britney classic. (REX)
The rocker gave a very different take on the Britney classic. (REX)

X Factor contestant Giovanni Spano gave an unforgettable rendition of Britney Spears classic debut singe …Baby One More Time on Saturday night’s ‘guilty pleasure’ themed show.

The 33-year-old West End performer added a screeching rock element to the just turned 20-years-old pop tune, which left both the audience at home and the judges somewhat astounded.

A shocked Simon Cowell admitted it was a guilty pleasure for him as ‘it is something you shouldn’t like, but you do like it. And that’s what you did!’

He went on to say it was both ‘mental’ and ‘fantastic.’

“It was so nutty and so mental it was fantastic! You are so interesting and so crazy…One of the craziest things we’ve ever had on this show!” Cowell said.

However, Louis Tomlinson wasn’t so convinced, and while admitted Giovanni was a ‘lovely guy’ the performance was just all a bit too much for him.

“Gio you definitely embraced the theme and it goes without saying you are a lovely guy and the most polite guy I’ve ever met actually. But it was just one step too intense and too weird for me.

“I understand you wanted to an original version of the song but it was just all a bit too mental for me to be honest,” Tomlinson said.

His words were met with a round of boos from the audience and Robbie Williams followed up with a quip about Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake’s infamous break-up.

“All I can say is if Britney had sung it exactly like that, Justin would never have left!” Williams said.

“Listen Gio! Real men were pink and real rockstars sing Britney!” Williams wife and fellow judge Ayda Field added.

Host Dermot O’Learly joked ‘Tomlinson not reading the room there!’ to which a smiling Tomlinson replied, “I know, I know!”

But it seems that Tomlinson’s remarks were actually indeed what many people were thinking watching at home. As fans flocked to Twitter to slate the bold performance.

Of course there were many solid Giovanni fans out there, who also took to Twitter to praise his wacky performance.

X Factor continues at 8pm on Sunday on ITV.

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