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Time to come out: Marcus Collins is my man for X Factor crown

Vote for this man.

It’s got to that point now in The X Factor when you need to nail your colours to the mast and (for what it’s worth) I’m coming out in full, unabashed support for Marcus Collins. I may not have been bowled over by the fashion this year (apart from Jessie J’s gothic masterpiece on Sunday’s show) but Marcus has stolen my heart (and my vote).

Yeah, yeah, Little Mix are ace, doing brilliantly for a girl band on X and their performance of En Vogue’s Don’t Let Go (Love) was dead good, but when Marcus started singing Lately on this week’s show, I went from being a casual(ish) watcher of the competition to a weeping fan-girl…

The vast majority of the highlights on the show so far have come courtesy of Mr. Collins imho. His Liverpool audition was crackalacking for starters – if you have never seen it, may I suggest you watch it now.

Pretty in pink

Every week he’s got better and better. I love his sharp-dressed-li’l-man look, he is utterly beautiful – perfect pop star material – and his voice reminds me of a young Luther Vandross; silky, soulful, searing.

He has sung some of my fave songs, like, ever, over the weeks. The Superstition vs Need You Tonight mash-up for Halloween was hot to trot, but it was really his Ronson-esque rock ‘n rolled version of Another One Bites the Dust that won me totally over (as for Tulisa’s duff comments, that girl knows not what she’s on about, right?)

When he did Higher and Higher (with the high note – at last, an X contestant with the balls to do a song properly) was I the only one jumping around my living room??

Then, he goes and does I’m Your Man (if you know me in real life, you’ll know that I spent a good chunk of my childhood living for Wham!)

But, of all the performances, this was surely the game-changer….

Are you blubbing? Stevie Wonder’s Lately is one of my mum’s favourite songs – and one of Marcus’ mums faves too, probably for the same reason. And if it doesn’t stir something in you, you may be dead inside (check for a pulse at your earliest convenience).

So there you have it. Fashion Detective has spoken. I’m convinced that Marcus is the first potential winner since Leona Lewis who could actually benefit from coming first, but the lack of standing ovation from the judges suggests that the public voting is too close to call this year.

So vote for him, yeah?

Screen grabs and footage from ITV.com/X Factor.

Written by Johanna Payton