America's Got Talent recap: Semi-Final 2
It’s the second round of semi-finals on America’s Got Talent and Howie told each of the 11 acts that they have what it takes to make it to the next round. This is statistically impossible since the official rules state only five can go to the finals. Will it be the funny dragon? Or a darling 13-year-old girl who channeled her inner Ricky Martin? Let’s break down the acts…
3 Shades of Blue
The good news is that the guys of 3 Shades of Blue all stopped cutting their hair because they are committed to looking like a real rock band. I think the lead singer needs to invest in a few bobby pins before their next gig. The bad news is that I enjoyed their pre-performance package song (“Feeling Good”) more than their live performance of “Sail” by AWOLNATION. The head-banging choreography is macho and there is enough smoke to fill a professional regurgitator’s stomach. But I don’t think they have what it takes to beat out a comedian, a ventriloquist, and a magic dragon. Howard agrees with me. The rest of the judges do not.
Gary Vider jokes about three things during his act: his weak frame, his Jewish heritage, and Mel B.’s boobs. Thank goodness America rallies together to make sure “boobissippi” trends on Twitter. He has the entire auditorium laughing, including the judges. He even has Heidi praise him in German, which of course was the perfect softball pitch for an impromptu zinger. He should be one of the finalists.
This sweet 13-year-old sings “La Copa de la Vida” or “Cup of Life,” which was the official song of the FIFA World Cup in a year when Alondra wasn’t even a twinkle in her parents’ eyes. This song was also a breath of fresh air in the 1998 Grammys, helmed by the delicious Ricky Martin. Alondra works the stage like a pro. She sings to the camera, calls out to the audience, and even dances with her horn section. I think the song needed to be sped up just a bit. It felt sluggish. But she did a great job and the judges loved her. With that said, I think she’s in the same boat as 3 Shades of Blue. Someone at the Disney Channel needs to call her and snatch her up before it’s too late.
After securing a spot in the semi-finals, the Freelusion team confessed that they needed to push themselves to the limit. Apparently that means dancing around robots that eventually become Transformers. I understand the performance was supposed to be about technology taking over our lives. Sure this is an important message, but the end result should not be an audience full of people who are checking their Facebook page because they are bored. I think this is the end of the road for Freelusion.
“Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers is a really good song. I would have enjoyed it more had Alicia not been roaming around what appeared to be the inside of a computer circuit board. It was highly distracting. She works the camera and gives it her all, but the performance fell flat. I wish it would have been a stripped down acoustic version. If America had to pick one singer, I assume the vote would go to Sharon Irving instead of Alicia.
NEXT: No broken bones — yet
Piff the Magic Dragon
Someone on Piff’s PR team wisely told the magic dragon to stop being so uninvested in his AGT journey. Piff was the friendly, unfazed magician we met in week 1 and the audience welcomed him back with open arms. He is able to weave in jokes with basic card tricks and even finishes with a “wow” moment that stuns the judges. Bonus: Zero animals were harmed in his performance. Hooray! Was it just me or did he have an extra minute or five during his act? It seemed much longer than the other ones. Extra minutes or not, I think he’s quirky enough for America to vote into the finals.
Daniella manages to combine two of my favorite things: fur and feathers. She performs “Crying” by Roy Orbison in a way only Daniella Mass can. Her voice is beautiful and the production is stunning. Maybe it’s because the weather here is similar to the surface of the sun, but I found myself longing to be transported to her wintery wonderland. Even though I loved the song, I’m afraid Howard is right—her music style does not translate to the masses. I have a feeling she won’t get the votes to make it to the finals.
Uzeyer Novruzov decides to try the same trick that he tried 15 years ago, which landed him in the hospital for two days in a coma, along with two broken wrists. Unfortunately, he falls again — but this time, no bones are broken. He stage rolls and hops up, eager to climb the ladder again. Nick Cannon has to give him the awful news that this is a live show and his two minutes are up. The disappointment in Uzeyer’s face is heartbreaking. Only America can save him now.
First of all, the Professional Regurgitator eats butter. He just gnaws on a stick of butter for lunch. That has nothing to do with his act, but I found it weird, so I’m reporting it. His performance, on the other hand, is AMAZING. There is no other word to describe it. He has a cup (with a lid) full of smoke. Stevie sucks the smoke out of the straw and swallows it. Then he drinks liquid hand soap, a few gulps of water, and starts blowing out bubbles like a bubble machine. Then he makes a bubble in his hands and BLOWS THE SMOKE INTO THE BUBBLE. He swallows a raw egg and hacks it back up for kicks and giggles. You can’t take your eyes off Stevie. You want to because he’s so gross, but you just can’t.
Sharon sings an eclectic version of John Lennon’s “Imagine,” and the audience goes wild. And by eclectic, I mean that it starts out acoustic, with just a piano. Then it swells into an orchestra and by the end there is a choir backing her up. Even though choirs make everything cooler, there’s simply nothing this woman can’t sing. The word “perfect” is thrown around by the judges. Her hat game was on point, too. Out of all the singers, she has the chops to make it to the finals for sure.
Paul invites Howie on stage. He fashions him with a huge ventriloquist mask. Paul has a remote control that can manipulate Howie’s mask. He “speaks” for Howie and even takes his chair on the panel. Through ventriloquism, Paul makes Howie twerk and do an Irish jig. Howie played along beautifully with silly facial expressions. The absolute best part was Mel B. cracking up the entire two minutes. Her happy place is definitely seeing Howie humiliate himself on national television. Paul receives a glowing endorsement from all four judges.
What did you think of tonight’s performances? Will a singer make it to the finals? Is there room for Gary, Piff, Paul, and Stevie? If so, who will take that fifth spot? Something tells me not to discard Uzeyer. You know Howard is secretly wishing for a broken bone on national TV. This could be his shot!