Felix Shepherd, the trans contestant who appeared on this weekend instalment of The X Factor, has said that he’s not offended by Robbie Williams questions about his former name.
Twitter took the former Take That star to task after Felix’s audition, during which Williams asked what his birth name was.
The 20-year-old from Birmingham explained that it was Emily, and that he first began questioning his gender when he was in year nine at school.
While Felix seemed happy enough to answer the question, many viewed it as intrusive and rude.
#XFactor felixs deadname did not even NEED to be mentioned. Robbie should NOT have asked that.
I never watch x factor and i ofc coincidentally tune in when robbie williams asks a trans persons deadname….
Well felix was amazing tho!!!
— ︽✵︽ Billie ︽✵︽ (@Coal_hill_quill) September 8, 2018
Tell me why Robbie williams asked Felix the trans guy on x factor ehat his name was when he was born on national tv?? Like why do people think theyre entitled to know this
— – (@ba151c) September 8, 2018
Robbie Williams forcing a trans man to dead name himself on X Factor is it.
ugh. I hope they're more sensitive to Felix going forward and that Robbie apologises to him.
— Holly (@holski_beat) September 8, 2018
@TheXFactor Why did Robbie Williams ask for Felix's birth name. How is that relevant to how well he sings? Isn't that just a bit rude.
— Kathryn (@PeachehKate) September 8, 2018
But Felix himself reckons different, taking to Twitter to say: “I just wanted to say that I was on no way offended by Robbie’s question but, I do realise everyone is different! Thanks for all the support.”
I just wanted to say that I was in no way offended by Robbie’s question but, I do realise everyone is different!
Thanks for all the support 💜
— Felix Shepherd (@felixjshepherd) September 9, 2018
Despite the question, the audience – and X Factor panel – gave Felix a rapturous response for his cover of All I Want by Kodaline, Simon Cowell confirming ‘5000 yeses’ from the audience.
Many also saw through the potential row, and saw instead a great performance.
— luckie ⚰️ (@LuckieRae) September 8, 2018
This young trans boy is absolutely amazing. Felix will win X factor this year, I’ve called it 👀🔮 #XFactor
— Nic🌈 (@nic_c951) September 8, 2018
— Pride in Surrey (@PrideInSurrey) September 8, 2018