A psychic uncovers a detail from Sofia’s engagement that’s never been shared before, acrobatics with dumbbells, and all-new dog stunts — it was a night of never-before-seen talents and we still can’t catch our breath!
It’s not often we see things we’ve never seen before on “America’s Got Talent,” but this one episode delivered four of those moments — though not all were great.
Some talents may be brand new, but we’re probably not going to be picking up a pay-per-view subscription for “no-contact wrestling.” We get that fans enjoy the storylines and bravado as much as the actual wrestling, but in place of it?
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The night also delivered one of the most compelling and original acrobatic acts we’ve ever seen, a dog act that actually has tricks we’ve never seen before and finally, a quick-change artist who took that particular talent to a whole different level in a way that’s still blowing our minds.
The night delivered an unexpected pair of twin comedians, an extremely confident “amazing” dance crew from South Korea — but they backed it up by delivering — and a hybrid musical experience you may have heard before without realizing exactly what it was you were hearing.
One of the night’s biggest acts actually delved into Sofia’s engagement as a psychic not only played an incredible game of lost-and-found, but also revealed a heretofore absolutely unknown detail about that proposal that Sofia insists has never been made public anywhere … until now.
Fair warning, since I’m safe at home, I’m probably going to be a little harsher than my colleagues Howie Mandel, Heidi Klum, Sofia Vergara and Simon Cowell. But I might be nicer, too. Maybe.
And just for fun, I’m gonna rank them from worst to first to see how my favorites do and then we can track them throughout the season to see how they fare.
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(no-contact wrestler) Yes, we want things we haven’t seen before, but it has to be well done. We get that professional wrestling trash talk is an artform, but Duane definitely didn’t have it. According to his package (ahem), he created no-contact wrestling to keep in all the things he liked like storylines and trash talk, and leave out all the things that were … well, physical. It was just terrible, though we did like that each judge buzzed him after he talked about them.
(dancers) This was very amateurish dancing, so while they were having fun, it might be better suited to the club than a stage this big.
(dog trainers) So … this was really boring. Not only was there a long period of just nothing happening, but the little dog literally jumped over a wand about three inches from the ground once and they called that a stunt. The other tricks were somewhat better, but only marginally. All in all, it felt like about ten percent of what an act like this should be bringing.
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(fashion designer) Melodie’s talent was to quickly cut a t-shirt into a stylish dress while it’s still on Heidi’s body. It’s the cut/ripped t-shirt look which kind of only has one look. We did like that she did it while wearing old-school roller skates, but the whole thing just didn’t dazzle nearly enough for us to want to see it again.
[[see Bob’s Dance Shop for video]]
(aerialist) We only saw a few seconds, and they echoed Howie’s argument that the spins weren’t groundbreaking or fast or anything that hasn’t been seen before.
[[see Bob’s Dance Shop for video]]
(jump rope) It was certainly an intricate routine and he definitely has some skill with jump rope, but we kind of agree with Howie that it was boring. It felt like it shouldn’t be, so perhaps it was down to his showmanship. Everything just felt small and inconsequential.
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(singers) Simon cut them off, but we weren’t really feeling this song delivery. Their vocals were nice and the harmonies okay, but what was up with the Warrant-style wailing counting them in and sprinkled throughout. It was jarring and didn’t fit what else they were doing. We didn’t get to see anymore, so it’s an interesting situation. They clearly have talent, but that particular performance was a bit of a mess. We’d probably have asked for another song.
(band) This isn’t necessarily an unknown group, having created the theme song to FX’s “Justified” more than a decade ago (though “AGT” never mentioned that). Their message of unity through differences has perhaps never resonated stronger than right now. And then they definitely delivered with a hybrid of bluegrass and hip-hop that sounded fresh and exciting on an original track that speaks to the world today. Spreading a powerful message through a unique sound is a great way to get people to pay attention.
(comedian) These twins really did deliver a fun set, talking in unison at times and playing off each other beautifully. There’s a playfulness to their delivery that’s fun to watch on its own But then they backed it up with solid material. The breakdown of dog parents saying their dogs are just like kids and why that just isn’t so was their strongest, but everything was very watchable and entertaining. Here’s hoping they have plenty more material.
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[[see Bob’s Dance Shop for video]]
(singer) This song is incredibly oversung, but Tory delivered it masterfully. She definitely has a musical theater delivery, with lots of character in her voice. On top of that, add incredible range and a vocal confidence you wouldn’t expect from an amateur on a talent show. She’s definitely got what it takes to achieve her Broadway dreams.
(psychic) We were already impressed with Peter finding the baseball bat Terry “lost,” but when he took it to the next level by finding Sofia’s engagement ring among a thousand rings boxes after Simon “lost” it, and then knew a detail about Sofia’s engagement — that there was a rainbow as it happened — that no one knew, he had us. His delivery was a lot of fun, and even though it was a somewhat lengthy audition, it was utterly compelling in large part to Peter’s engaging personality. The trick itself was just gravy — very good gravy, mind you.
(dancers) We’d have probably skipped the screen they used to hide a costume change and worked it out offstage or into the choreography, as the reveal just wasn’t special enough to justify it. Other than that, though, this was a stellar audition. We could not believe how in sync they were throughout this entire routine. The moves were intricate, expressive and the whole thing had an energy level that really did remind us of the anime they said inspired it.
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(dog trainer) Is it still possible to be wowed by a dog act? Alexandra proved that it absolutely is. Wiht body rolls and flips, she had Tesla doing things we’d never seen. It’s powerful that she needed zero props but her own body to make this act work and we couldn’t take our eyes off of it. And then, she brought out her second dog Luka and this one was every bit as trained. They were perfectly in sync, dancing, rolling, it was incredible.
(singer) Even if we hadn’t heard her tragic story of seeing her parents murdered right in front of her, there was no denying the layers of emotion she poured into this performance. It was one of the most heartfelt and genuine auditions we’ve ever seen. Her song choice could not have been more perfect for her story, which is why she was able to connect so strongly with it. But with a beautiful mix of power and tenderness in her voice, and perfect control of all of it, she was able to have us feeling every bit of it alongside her. That’s quite a gift.
(quick-change artist) We love that Lea came from former “AGT” alum Lorian’s act, combining his magic with the artistry of quick-change. Now, she’s doing it all by herself, and it’s impressive how far she’s come in this span of time. There’s a traditional way that quick-change has been done, but Lea threw all those expectations out the window. Like modern magicians, she did the changes right in front of our eyes and we still can’t figure some of them out. It was sexy and exciting and extremely fashionable. What a way to stand on her own.
Results: [Heidi’s Golden Buzzer]
(acrobats) What we want to see is things we’ve never seen before, and after all these years and so many reality competition shows, it’s hard to do. But this was definitely something wholly new. These four guys did acrobatics with barbells, and their stunts were both simple in that you could easily see how their done, but also incredibly complicated in that the skill, strength, balance and trust to pull them off is through the roof. This was exciting and unpredictable from start to finish and an incredible adrenaline rush.
“America’s Got Talent” auditions continue next Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.