Look, it’s not like I understood the decision to bring on Cheryl Cole from the UK to be a judge on US X Factor either. If you’ve been reading my column, you’ll know I had a lot of thoughts on this, and most of them were consistent with “it’s a dumb decision”.

Still, I feel for her. It was a sh-tty thing to do to her. To step up and offer it to her and then take it away before she even had the chance.

dropped the big exclusive last night – Cheryl’s been replaced by Nicole Scherzinger who was the Pussycat Doll who always stood in the middle of the formation, remember? While, at press time, Simon Cowell and Fox have not responded to the claim, the fact that they’ve stayed silent while the UK media are losing their tits over the news pretty much confirms it for everyone. Now they’re just trying to damage control and put out the best possible release.

So what’s the problem? Apparently her Geordie accent. Here’s a sample of what it sounds like:

I grew up with people from all kinds of different backgrounds speaking English. I grew up listening to my ma trying to speak English. So, I mean, I don’t have difficulty with the way Cheryl speaks, don’t find it hard to hear. It’s English. Having said that, I have a very good friend, who is Canadian, for whom English is her first language, who goes to England regularly for work and literally can barely make her way around.

But it’s not like Cheryl suddenly grew the Geordie accent like some kind of new muscle the minute they hired her for the show. They knew about it, she’s been present at several auditions. Supposedly though, on top of the fact that they’re worried Americans won’t understand her, she isn’t getting on that well with Paula Abdul. TMZ’s source called it a “lack of chemistry” and that between the two, Cheryl was easier to let go. Lack of chemistry? So was it a hairpulling situation in the dressing room or what? It sounds a little like a hairpulling situation in the dressing room, non? Paula Abdul is CRAZY. And she’s really thin right now so it means she’s extra crazy with the hunger. Put that up against Cheryl who, despite the makeover, is still a roughneck deep down (she once gave some other girl the beatdown in a club and was alleged to have uttered racial slurs while throwing punches), and that’s a petri dish for drama. On second thought, maybe having Cheryl on isn’t a bad idea at all?

I once wondered whether or not Cheryl Cole would be Simon Cowell’s Achilles Heel. Now I wonder if it’s this show, period. Bringing it over to the US, I mean. You know how some projects seem to be cursed from the start? Spiderman on Broadway, The Hobbit. It feels like this a little for Simon right now. He’s been on a win streak for a long, long time. Once in a while, everyone plays a bad hand.

Attached – the last time Cheryl was sighted on official X Factor business on May 18th. Reports out of the UK say she’s devastated by the news and may not even return to X Factor in the UK after this embarrassment. It’s crazy to me how America is such a Waterloo for so many Brits. Like, you don’t matter enough unless you matter in the USA. Cheryl is at the TOP of the Celebrity Food Chain in the UK. She’s wealthy, she’s connected, super popular, and yet it never seems to be enough. It’s called a Fame Appetite, I guess. A stomach for celebrity that just keeps growing.

Photos from Butterworth/Splashnewsonline.com