Nathaniel Willemse knows all too well about the fickle nature of reality TV talent shows.
Having already tried his luck on Ten's now defunct singing show Australian Idol six years ago, the 25-year-old Melbournian again failed to come out on top on Seven's smash-hit talent series The X Factor, having been booted from the show on Tuesday.
Speaking to Willemse yesterday, it was no surprise to hear that The X Factor was the former wedding singer's last shot at reality TV fame.
"I don't think I'll do a reality TV show again," he said.
"The show is so unpredictable and you don't know what to expect, you can't have any expectations at all, regardless of whether you've given a good or bad performance, it still could be you going home."
In recent weeks, it seemed as though a pattern had formed in the voting stakes in that the contestants' popularity prevailed over talent.
Some of the show's most gifted performers, including Willemse and soul queen Angel Tupai, failed to secure Australians' support and were consequently eliminated, while Perth's Samantha Jade was forced to face her third showdown on Tuesday due to a lack of public votes.
Given his ousting from the competition and having to face off against Jade this week, does Willemse think The X Factor has become more of a popularity contest than a talent quest?
"I do feel that it has become that way," he said. "But we have to have that popularity and likeability - that's what you need in order for the public to get behind you.
"It was pretty silly to have me and Sammy fight it out, especially when we're in the same category, but I think a lot of us tend to forget it's a competition at the end of the day and if it comes down to that you just have to sing as best as you can."
While disheartened to have missed out on the finale - which is just weeks away - Willemse said he hadn't given up on hopes of releasing an album next year.
"I'll definitely still do music and try to create a career out of that (experience)," he said.
Willemse will join the remaining top five performers Jade, Bella Ferraro, Jason Owen, Shiane Hawke and the Collective, on a national concert tour next year which will kick off on the Gold Coast and wrap up in Perth at Challenge Stadium on January 16.