I must first let you all know that I have bronchitis and a temperature, so if I suddenly start talking about the purple unicorn galloping across the stage, chances are it’s just some cold medicine-induced hallucination. Or it might be real. With this show… could go either way. We are still not in Las Vegas, but let’s see what America’s Got Talent has to offer tonight. We’re in New York. Again.
We kick tonight off with Perry, a 50 year-old "actor" dressed like the Burger King Man. He’s doing Shakespeare and I can only hope he’s doing a comedy routine akin to Lovitz’s actor on SNL. Alas, his Bolingbroke from Richard II is not very good. Piers calls him a complete waste of space, then the Hoff graces us with "to buzz or not to buzz, that is the question." They send him packing.
This kicks off the night’s first Montage o’ Suck with Inflatable Theatre, a guy who bounces around in an inflatable, except not funny like the ones last week; Sweet Lou, a swarthy Italian who shrieks "Don’t Stop til You Get Enough"; The Power Team, an act where a man crashes through a barrier that is lit on fire; Seed & Feed, a weird marching Mardi-Gras-on-Crack type thing; and Anita, a 60 year-old baton twirler/burlesque performer.
Our next performer is a shadow puppeteer duo. They do Clinton, Nixon, JFK, and Pope John Paul II. The audience weirdly goes nuts. I find this to be pretty stupid. His Clinton could’ve been Leno, the Nixon could’ve been Cyrano de Bergerac, the Pope could’ve been a bunny rabbit. The judges put him through, but I say he’s cannon fodder for when the American Public votes so that the good acts get through.
25 year-old Xavier or XL is up now, while the plinky-plunky strains of hardship play. It seems that Xavier has a wife and a kid and they seem pretty happy, so they are really scraping the bottom of the Sad Story Barrel right here. He sings "Ordinary People," but it’s a little strained for my taste. I’d like to hear him sing something a little lower. The judges love him and he sails through.
We’re back in Los Angeles, which Jerry tells us is the "final stop." This makes me think they really have been criss-crossing the country? Which is so weird and inefficient.
First up is the Texas State Strutters, a group of orange-faced, white-teethed girls who look a little like when Ross over-whitened his teeth on Friends. They are wearing all-white cowgirl outfits with skirts, hats and boots; they do not flatter every member of the precision dance team. They dance to "September" and start with a kick-line, which is good but again, nothing terribly special. These are like teh Dallas Desperados from last week — any high school dance team could do this. They do one leap, one double turn and hit the splits three times. Big whoop. The Hoff liked it (natch), Piers says you’ve got to be an act that could go into Vegas each week and be tight. It was a little lax for him. Exactly. Hoff says yes, Sharon says no, Piers says yes. Booo, Piers. Just when I was liking you again.
Our Montage o’ Awesome starts with Shakes, a 10 year-old hip-hop dancer who is adorable; The Awakening, a funky street hip-hop dance troupe; and Georgia Force, a cheerleading team (see Texas State Strutters and Dallas Desperados. Gag me.)
Ron is up next and he’s a skinny weird dude in a suit with no tie. He starts stripping to "All Night Long" while he sings along. It’s bad. It’s sort of like if a Hispanic version of the skinny virgin kid from Road Trip stripped for you. Inexplicably, the horrified judges let this go on for like 3 minutes. He tells Sharon he usually performs in a bus stop. Yep. Piers calls him weirdly entertaining. Oh no, don’t encourage him. Sharon and Piers put him through. I hate them tonight.
Ya know, on American Idol, a little weirdo like this might get Randy and Paula up to sing and dance with him, but they would NEVER put him through to Hollywood.
To kick-off the Most Dangerous Act (not by Richard Connell), we revisit the Russian Bar act (cool), the karate-fire guy (dumb), and the sword swallower (freaky). This act involves cobras and… having one of them kiss the cobra? Really? They are Darryl and his other brother Darryl. They call the act The Kiss of Death, which involves getting the cobra to "fan out" and then one Darryl will kiss it. The snake comes out and is set on a table. They rile him up a little and, after much drama and serious music, Darryl II leans over and kisses the cobra on top of the head. Lame. Piers buzzes him, we’re BFFs again. Sharon and Hoff are impressed, but say it’s not for this show… and weirdo stripper dude IS? Sheesh. Darryl and Darryl are shunted off.
Next up is a montage of last year’s winner Terry. Good for him. Next! This leads us to 42 year-old Michael Harrison, who is also a ventriloquist. Michael’s grandfather was a Vaudeville ventriloquist. That’s cool! He comes out with his dummy and Piers warns him the bar is very high for him. He brings someone up from the audience. A plant? His human puppet, turns out. He’s decently funny, I would watch him do some more stuff. The judges loved it, he’s through. Yay!
The final day comes to an end and we get our last sob-story auditioner, a 40 year-old single mom named Emily. Her background music sounds a little like "Go the Distance" from Hercules. She sings "Chain of Fools" and I immediately like the tone of her voice. She’s one of the better singers this show has had so far. She’s got a big voice without screaming. Not quite Aretha, but in that vein certainly. Good show, Emily. The judges love her, she’s gettin choked up, it’s really nice. Tears are rolling down her cheeks, Piers tells her she has a great chance of winning. Awww. Good for her. I hope later on she sings "Think," that’s a great song.
NEXT WEEK WE FINALLY GET VEGAS, GUYS! Thanks for sticking with me and let’s get to the good stuff! Oh, for the love of Pete! We have ONE MORE week of this crap, then we have the Vegas rounds in two weeks. Good lord.