Deadline is reporting that Britney Spears is close to inking a deal that would see her as a judge on The X Factor, Simon Cowell's American Idol follow-up. But perhaps more interesting than Cowell reinstating his recently decimated judging panel back to full strength is the fact that it would once again place Britney in direct competition with her pop star rival, Christina Aguilera, who has been serving as a judge and the main face of NBC's popular singing competition, The Voice.
The Voice has enjoyed strong ratings, and recently has hovered around 10 million viewers per night. Much of this can be attributed to the star power of the judging panel, which includes Christina Aguilera, Blake Shelton, Cee Lo Green, and Maroon 5's Adam Levine. X factor, however, seems to be winning the ratings battle; last season's Voice finale drew about 11 million viewers, while X Factor's finale drew more than 12 million. It did so with a decidedly less luminary panel of judges, including the now-dismissed Paula Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger. But both shows could benefit from Spears' involvement in the X Factor franchise, as fans rush to cast their vote in the latest iteration of the Britney vs. X-Tina battle.
The comparisons have been there for many years: both are blonde ex-Mouseketeers who've gone on to huge pop stardom. The breakout hits of each singer ("Baby One More Time" for Spears and "Genie In a Bottle," for Christina) respectively reached the pinnacle of the Hot 100 a mere approximately six months apart.
While the common thread appears to be that Christina has the better, more powerful singing voice, Britney has shown more commercial appeal, both in terms of chart placement this past decade, and in terms of overall sales: Christina Aguilera's worldwide album sales have been estimated to be more than 50 million versus Britney's more than 100 million.
A note before things get out of hand: the term "rivalry" is meant to be a career comparison; Aguilera has gone on record saying that the two of them are "old friends," and has been noted to say and tweet supportive statements on Spears' behalf.
One thing's for sure: this is a can't-miss for fans of either artist should Britney accept the deal and take the rivalry to another arena.
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