Simon Cowell incurred the wrath of several viewers last night when he complimented a female ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ contestant on her appearance but not her act, saying that she had “nice legs”.

30 year old magician Josephine Lee scored well with ‘BGT’ fans watching at home with her performance during Wednesday night’s show (May 31st), which was notable because she was conducting her tricks not to a background tracking of music, but to a spoken-word voiceover soundtrack about female empowerment.

Judges David Walliams, Alesha Dixon and Amanda Holden all praised Lee, but Cowellwas not impressed with her performance. “I don’t think you’ve got the showmanship. I get it you’re a girl – you don’t want to be the assistant but I got a bit sick of it.”

Britain's Got Talent'Britain's Got Talent' judging panel in 2017

He then referred to the fake set of legs that had pushed the table during the act, and remarked: “I like the legs!”

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“I am infuriated by @SimonCowell's sexist comments to Josephine after such a meaningful performance @BGT #sexism #BGT,” one irate viewer wrote, while another said: “Less of a fan of Simon Cowell's only feedback being 'I liked the legs'. Sexism is alive and well in prime time television!!!”

Lee had said earlier on that her aim was partly to prove that women could play a more important role on the magic circuit than the frequent perception of them being little more than pretty assistants.

“Magic is a very male-oriented industry,” she explained in her pre-performance clip. “The only women often involved are the assistants. I've worked as a magician's assistant for eight or nine years now, being a distraction, or a pair of legs bringing on a table, and I am fed up now. It's my time.”

The final of the 11th series of ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ is airing this Saturday (June 3rd).

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