After the train wreck of the YouTube round, I for one, was totally stoked to see which familiar faces would be vying for redemption during the America's Got Talent Wild Card round.
Horsman's steampunk set and the glass case that let us actually see what he was doing, was a huge improvement over his last performance. Howard Stern commented that the case, which steadily filled with concrete as Horsman worked toward his escape, added that "real sense of danger" that was missing in his previous escape.
Really, Howard? It was Stern's decision to invite the slapstick loving Horse back to the stage. Declaring "Cups are for cheaters!" Horse did more of what Horse does: get hit in the balls. Howie Mandel and I made the same look of disgust the entire time.
There was nothing wrong with the lovely Lindsey's dance routine. It was flawlessly executed, just like her previous performances. While Sharon Osbourne commended her for making better use of the stage, I kind of had to side with Howie and Howard -- Norton is great, but will unfortunately, most likely be overlooked by voters. Compared to many of the other acts, her's just doesn't stand out.
While the end result of Blaque's meticulous set-up was impressive -- a round of William Tell played with himself, blindfolded -- the problem with the act as a whole was that the careful preparation required to pull off such a feat isn't a whole lot of fun to watch. The judges raved though, so, he certainly has a change to move forward.
Andrew DeLeon's unceremonious ousting from the Las Vegas rounds so quickly behind his phenomenal debut was heartbreaking. It's also a thing of the past, as Howie declared his Wild Card performance, a beautiful rendition of "Unchain My Heart," to have redeemed him.
Jake Wesley Rogers
Following up his ill-received cover of "Toxic," Rogers traded Britney Spears for Lady Gaga in a move that fell flat with the judges as well (maybe try to at least move out of the pop genre next time?) While his performance was technically fine, it failed to connect with the audience. Howie Mandel pointed out that this just isn't the year for singers on AGT.
I still find the live animal used as a dummy thing to be off-putting, but at least his material improved. Rather than mock his judges (always a risky move), Oliver set his sights on the current presidential race. Armed with better material, Oliver earned praise from all three judges.
The uncle-nephew team tantalized with a trick that actually killed one of their relatives. The men balanced on knives clenched between their teeth. Stern commented that he "can't believe these are the acts that were voted off." I know, right?
Sebastien "El Charro de Oro"
The kid-fronted Mariachi band changed things up a little by channeling Sinatra for a Latin-infused cover of "New York, New York." Howard was skeptical, but I liked it. So did Howie and Sharon. Two out of three ain't bad!
Sharon asked for a Magic Mike homage, instead, she got Drumline, sans drums. The clogging group staged a competition between themselves and their silhouettes projected on the wall behind them. It was decent enough, but, as Howie and Howard pointed out, probably not exciting enough to earn an advancement.
Sandu, whose balancing act was cut after a fall during his last performance, was invited back to the NJPAC stage to try again. And try he did. Unfortunately, another fall cut Tuesday's performance short again and, most likely, will send Sandu home again as well.
Jarrett and Raja
Despite quite literally being booed off the stage the last time we saw them, magicians Jarrett and Raja not only returned to the stage, but totally owned it with their spectacular trick. Raja opened the performance playing a piano in crate. He was sealed up and the crate exploded, revealing Raja to be fine and dandy with the piano in the back of the auditorium. All three judges gave them a much deserved standing ovation.
Who do you think America will send forward?
Here are my picks:
Jarrett and Raja
What are yours?
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