Lilian Min
March 16, 2015 2:55 pm

Reality television is known for spotlighting bad behavior, but two judges on New Zealand’s X Factor took it way too far when they cruelly bullied a contestant on live TV.

Judges, singers, and married couple Natalia Kills and Willy Moon mocked contestant Joe Irvine over, among other things, the fact that he was wearing a suit and tie, and even compared him to the fictional murderer Norman Bates. While famous TV personalities like Simon Cowell are known for being sarcastic, what Kills and Moon said both made no sense and totally crossed the line.

The Internet quickly jumped to Joe Irvine’s defense, as people took to social networks to show support for Irvine and call out Kills and Moon’s behavior for the bullying it is. Actual nice guy Ed Sheeran even reached out directly to Irvine over Twitter, tweeting, “[D]on’t worry about what anyone else says man. Enjoy yourself with it, that’s what singing is about, not what other people think.”

Irvine’s Twitter is currently filled with positive support, and he himself has remained optimistic about the entire ordeal, tweeting, “I love you all thank you all so much for your support [it’s] a big thing to me I really appreciate all the kindness and support.” Just like the dancing man who was mocked on 4chan and then embraced by social media communities, Irvine’s story has a happy ending: Kills and Moon were both fired, while Irvine continues on to the next round of X Factor NZ.

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