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America's Got Talent 4, August 4: Back from the Braindeadby Tyler Sandersfeld -- 08/05/2009
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Ladies, gentlemen, and whip artists! Welcome to the first performance episode of the season for America's Got Talent! It's about time, too.
The top 40 have been picked, but Simon Cowell called last week with a curveball. Cutting to the chase, eight acts have been given another chance to screw this show up. Oh, please don't tell me this wasn't planned from the get go. Do these people even know how to make a show like this believable? I don't care if a show is as fake as wax fruit, just as long as it looks real. This looks like uncooked wax.
This week, The Diva League and Lake Houston Dance will be performing once again. Also performing are: Thia Megia; The Platt Brothers; Arcadian Broad; Acrodunk; Grandma Lee; Mosaic; BreakSk8; Drew Thomas Magic; Manuela Horn; and Kevin Skinner. That's a pretty strong-sounding lineup, and having the overrated Kevin Skinner in the mix means bad news for the other nine.
Host Nick Cannon shows off the new stage and reintroduces the panel of putzes (Piers Morgan, Sharon Osbourne, and David Hasselhoff). Piers wants to see performances that are better than the auditions. Sharon is excited about Nick and is waiting to be entertained. David says the key to a great live performance is that this is opening night. You're a hack, David. There, I said it.
The judges still have their buzzers, and this time, a triple buzz will end the act before it can end on its own. We could have used that last year to put Flambeaux out of his misery.
The first act of the episode is, of course, a dance act. They always go first. Why not switch it up sometime, show? Anyway, the dance act is America's Best Dance Crew rejects Breaksk8. David says they came through in Vegas when put to the test. I still say that ALL of the acts should have been put through the test. In any case, the guys are nervous, since they have so many extra elements in this routine.
Breaksk8 dances to "Smooth Criminal." It starts out rather boring, and it never gets any better. There are some basic breaking moves halfway through, and they're not great. The backing dancers and the props add nothing to the routine. This is seriously one of the most boring dance routines I've ever seen on this show. The skates don't really make it any more interesting.
Piers says there's a reason Michael Jackson didn't dance on skates -- they made the routine too slow. Sharon, however, thought it was a great way to open the show. David agrees that they were good, and he knows they'll be voted back. I hope not.
Next up is 14-year-old Thia Megia. She normally listens to the radio and daydreams of having her own concert, but never thought it would ever happen. Piers wants Thia to show us who she is and not to impersonate divas (are you listening, Kelli Glover?).
Thia sings "The Climb." Oh, ew, a Miley Cyrus song. This performance isn't nearly as good as her audition. It sounds strained and off-key from beginning to end. Her visual performance is an improvement, I'll give her that. Since this country loves young singers, she will be moving on over more talented people.
Sharon says Thia did not disappoint, and that for a 14-year-old, she looks very age appropriate David says, "Thia Megia, you really got to me-a." Piers, after being skipped over accidentally, keeps his critique to one word: brilliant. Ah, the overrating of solo singers begins anew. Gag me with a music stand.
Two down, and so far neither has really struck me as worthy of the million. Let's see if The Platt Brothers can change my mind. Piers has seen the potential for a great act, but he wonders if they have the potential for a Vegas show. For that, the brothers will be bringing their biggest routine yet.
The Platt Brothers start out in their well-known blue jumpsuits, which they shed for snappy white suits. Midway through, they do a cute martial arts movie homage. After that, it's some strange contemporary dancing. Otherwise, they do moves we have seen before. The biggest problem with the act is that it's hard to tell what's supposed to be going on. There needs to be a more unified theme with each performance, especially with the brevity necessary on this show. I want to like this performance more, but I don't.
David liked the physicality, but the "talking stuff" shouldn't be part of their act. Piers likes them, but he doesn't know what their act is. He thinks it's all a bit unfocused. Sharon agrees that they have to sort their act out, and she warns them not to cram everything they do in one minute-twenty performance.
The Diva League gets their comeback performance next. They're happy to get this second chance, and they're excited about the wardrobe. Despite being a dance troupe, only one of the drag queens is a trained dancer. Sharon likes how these 200-plus-pound. guys can dance in high heels. Their routine this time will be a little macabre, diving into the realm of "glam-pires."
The Diva League performs to "Disturbia." I can see why they were eliminated originally. They're just as boring as Breaksk8, if not more so. The vampire theme and lip-synching dodn't add anything to the dancing, which isn't really good dancing. Plus, the colors used makes it hard to see them at all. It's entertaining enough for a nightclub, but as a headlining Vegas act? Not a chance.
Piers, who buzzed them, congratulates them on the song choice, because it was "quite disturbing." He says a bunch of lip-synching drag queens who can't dance is not what America needs right now. Sharon disagrees, saying they were "fabulously camp." David says this is one Halloween party that scares him, but he believes it can sustain a show in Vegas.1 2 3 Next-->
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