November 26, 2012 12:00 PM

>The X Factor’s got Britney Spears, but rival The Voice has everything else.

Watching the two music shows currently throwing down in prime time, I couldn’t tell you whether a legitimate singing talent will ever emerge—I won’t live that long—but NBC’s The Voice is the clear winner over FOX’s The X Factor. With Christina Aguilera, CeeLo Green, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton as coaches, The Voice has a noisy, raw gladiatorial energy that makes the competition a sort of musical WWE. It just rips along. The X Factor, presided over by Simon Cowell, is a more lavish pop production—contestants perform on an enormous set that reduces them in scale to a dog act. The X Factor has bet heavily on bringing in powerhouse judges like Britney Spears and Demi Lovato (with whom Cowell bickers) and hiring Mario Lopez and Khloé Kardashian Odom as cohosts. In his smiling smoothness, Lopez seems to regard her much as a magician might a woman to be sawed in half. The show’s Big Kahuna is Spears. She generates such on-camera star presence that I wait on her every word. And most of those words are really boring. The X factor—she’s it. THE VOICE: [] THE X FACTOR: []

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