The tan-tastic Scouser has had the Digital Spy forums and Twittersphere in uproar in recent weeks as he has slipped and slimed his way out of the bottom two.
His collection of Mother's Day ballads, which have more cheese ladled on them than the ASDA dairy aisle, and his uncanny ability to wheel out vibrating, quivering nervous hands and a red, whimpering, wobbling face has been enough to see him through to week five. With every passing Sunday he survives, the mystery about his success continues.
The world of social media bubbles over with vengeful fury. But Maloney trundles along quietly, dressed like an M&S catalogue model with all the charisma of an overworked car park attendant.
Christopher Maloney warbles through 'Hero':
So why have I fallen for this blubbering fella, who's got about as much X Factor as a crisp sandwich?
At first, I too couldn't get my head around him. Why would the public choose such a throwback, such an oddball, over the more likeable Amy Mottram, more good-looking Adam Burridge and more chart-friendly Times Red in the Wildcard vote puzzled me.
But as the weeks have passed, Maloney has slowly wormed his way into my affections. Perhaps not for the right reasons, but he's achieved it nonetheless.
X Factor used to be a light-hearted Saturday night entertainment show. For the first couple of series it was cheesy entertainment. Nobody cared if the acts went on to achieve chart success, it was more about binmen singing '80s soft rock standards, perky kids belting out big band classics and game old women warbling along to Whitney. We had winners like Steve Brookstein and finalists who had about as much chance of lighting up the charts as a Jimmy Savile tribute record.
But nowadays, the show has become part of a Syco conveyor belt. It's about creating proper popstars and generating hit records. Which is great if you're 17, and JLS, One Direction and Cher Lloyd are your idea of fun.
Christopher Maloney wheels out a Stilton load of cheese with 'Alone':
But if you only tune into X Factor for the pantomime and Louis Walsh, there's no fun to be had in watching pretty people singing mash-ups, groups showcasing their "urban roots" and boybands having their auto-tune switched up to 11 so we can focus on the fact that they have hair like Harry Styles.
Maloney is a throwback to an age when you tuned into X Factor and you'd be more likely to hear an ABBA medley than an LMFAO hit. There was more Rod Stewart and Mariah than One Direction and Rihanna.
He eased his way into the show with a Mariah Carey ballad and hasn't strayed far beyond power ballads since. His one mild diversion came when he strutted his stuff to 'Waiting For A Star To Fall' in Club Classics week, where he made dad dancing look like ballet with a succession of hip thrusting and bum wiggles that he'd clearly mastered in the karaoke bars of Liverpool.
Christopher Maloney thrusts his hips on 'Waiting For A Star To Fall':
And so what if Maloney is a big phoney? Everyone lies on X Factor about their experience. And the fact that he's done some singing on a cruise ship is hardly to his benefit.
In a year of too many safe acts, too many motionless, emotionless pop drones, Maloney's three minutes on the stage provide some much needed giggles and ridiculousness. And isn't that all we really want from The X Factor?
And if you need a reason to vote for Maloney this weekend, just think of this. Have you considered the thought of what Simon Cowell's face will look like when he's shown a YouTube clip in December of his new X Factor champion, his new bright pop thing, his new One Direction... and it's Chris Maloney roaring a cover to the Baywatch theme.
Where do you stand on Christopher Maloney? A giant phoney who sings a load of baloney? Or an X Factor cult legend in the making? Let us know!