When Susan Boyle was just “a pitiful, pathetic, unattractive 48-year-old Scottish virgin who lived with a cat,” everyone was ready to catapult her to stardom, writes Tanya Gold for the Guardian. "The deal was—we will save you, but you have to be the kind of victim that we want." But then the “hairy angel” started to crack. “She wasn’t, in fact, an angel, but she was human, and troubled”—and her adoring public turned on her.
After all, talent alone doesn’t win such competitions. Voters ask themselves, “Who from the fetid gutter shall we raise up to be a glittering star?” In return, the contestant must “be blemish-free and passive and inert.” When Susan started veering off her fairy tale path, “it was like realizing that Cinderella didn't have an orgasm on her wedding night—or that Snow White actually hated the dwarves.”