- Publish Date
- Monday, 16 March 2015, 9:58AM
X Factor New Zealand judge Natalia Kills caused an uproar last night when she lambasted one of the show's contestants for being "disgusting" and copying her husband.
Kills, whose husband Willy Moon is also a judge on the show, was booed by the studio crowd - and condemned on Twitter - when she lashed out at contestant Joe Irvine for his performance.
The incident sparked fans to launch a petition to have Kills removed from the show, while TV3 distanced itself from the judges with a Facebook post that said it "does not condone bullying".
Kills' tirade came after Irvine performed Cry Me a River during the live broadcast.
"As an artist who respects creative integrity and intellectual property, I am disgusted at how much you have copied my husband, from the hair to the suit," Kills said.
"Do you not have any value or respect for originality?
"You're a laughing stock. It's cheesy, it's disgusting, I personally found it absolutely artistically atrocious. I am embarrassed to be sitting here in your presence having to even dignify you with an answer of my opinion ... it's disgusting, you make me sick ... I'm ashamed to even be here."
Moon, who hit headlines over the weekend for allegedly swearing at an Auckland mother in a bakery, continued the criticism. "To me, it just feels a little bit cheap and absurd," he said of the performance.
Moon said Irvine reminded him of Psycho killer Norman Bates: "It's just a little bit creepy ... I feel like you're going to stitch someone's skin to your face and then kill everyone in the audience."
TV3 said on Facebook it "did not condone bullying" and that Irvine was "doing well".
A petition on Change.org that asked for Kills to be removed as a judge from the show has more than 21,000 supporters.
- NZ Herald