alycewilson (alycewilson) wrote,

  • Mood:

"America's Got Talent" Recap: Setting the Top 12

Sorry I didn't post a recap earlier this week, but I was trying to make the place more presentable before my son's first in-home piano lesson (we had been taking them at his school). Here's a combined recap for both the performance and results shows, beginning with the performance show.

• Starting off the night, Jonah Smith, who fronts a blues-rock band, had a lot of energy and sounded professional on their explosive version of One Republic's "Love Runs Out." Mel B. said it was a great way to open the show. Howie Mandel quipped, "So far tonight, you are the best." Heidi Klum liked it, saying she loved his rich, soulful voice. Howard Stern said that, up until this point, every performance has been better than the next. It was good, he said, but not their best.
Baila Conmigo, the large salsa dance group, changed it up with some moves they'd never done before, such as a standing wave all the way across the stage and some spinning tosses and catches. The crowd went wild for them. They got a standing ovation from Mel B. Howie said it was hard not to smile. He thought the little kids should be their own act. Howard thought the act was fabulous, but they need to put the kids front and center if they want to stay safe. Heidi said watching them makes her feel good, and Mel B. liked the extra tricks and said, "You really gave it your all."
• Male singer Jaycob Curlee kept it simple, playing his guitar on a stool, surrounded by candles. He was smart to not only keep it simple but to also deliver a well-known melody, "Your Song" by Elton John. He was having some pitch problems at points, though. Howard said it was his personal best, and that he'd risen to the occasion, though there were a couple off moments. Heidi said he is blessed with a good voice but he still needs to work on developing his stage presence. Mel B. thought he'd taken a bit of a risk, and that the way he'd delivered the song was "quite small." Howie remarked that it's no longer about his story (he's 18) but that America would decide based on his performance.
• Magician Mat Franco did another card trick at the judges' table. Then he had Mel B. hold them and then took a photo with her phone. He "accidentally" dropped her phone in a Snapple cup, and then he "fixed" it by putting it in a bag and using a hair dryer. After some smoke, the phone disappeared. He asked Heidi to call Mel's phone, and she did so, and the phone rang. He led her up onstage to find it and then to a seat in the audience, which he cut open and had her reach in to retrieve the phone. And guess what? The phone was in seat number 642, the same number as the cards! Howard complimented him for "getting rid of Mel's stupid phone." He liked that he knows how to work the camera. This pays off, he said. Heidi called the act mind-boggling. Howie was impressed with his ability to make a small trick bigger. Mel called him brilliant and praised his delivery and stage presence.
AcroArmy did some impressive acrobatics and dance moves, including a very tall pyramid and a guy who tossed his partner by her legs, as well as a woman who was used as a jump rope. Standing ovations from everyone. Mel B. called it incredible and "off the chain." Howie joked, "We should send you to the front lines to dazzle the enemy." Howard called it dazzling but hoped that the viewers at home would be equally impressed. Heidi said she felt like she was already in Las Vegas watching one of the biggest shows.
Kelli Glover did a completely misguided, old-fashioned sounding dance mix of Beyonce's "Love on Top." So bad. Howie observed that she always starts off shaky and she's got to be more sure of herself. Howard said she makes him think of "cruise ship" or "beauty pageant" and that there's something missing. Heidi thought she had confidence and was brave to do a Beyonce song. Mel B. said it's frustrating for her, because she can sing but "tonight you lost it."
• For his Wild Card pick, Howard brought back comedian Wendy Liebman. She riffed on class reunions, weight, family and marriage, all pretty standard material. At the close of her set, Howard urged America to vote for her. Heidi liked the way she misdirects the audience with the jokes, saying, "You're really, really funny." Mel B. liked a "strong, funny independent woman." She thanked Howard for bringing her back. Howie said that people have to understand the creativity involved in creating an act like hers.
Blue Journey, the dance duo, again created a visually surprising and amazing routine, interacting with video on the floor and the wall, with melting backgrounds and surprising effects. Heidi loved it, and so did Mel B., who praised their creativity. Howard called it "visually stunning." He wondered if the song (by Radiohead) was a little risky, because it was slow. Howie liked that they had created their own genre.
• Next were Emil and Darien, who played their cellos with a rock backing band. It sounded a little off this time. I'm not sure what the problem was: the mix maybe? Their tuning? They performed the Wings song, "Live and Let Die." Mel B. gave them a standing ovation, praising their energy and calling them cool. Howie said they were perfect and felt like Paul McCartney didn't show up to his own concert. Howard liked that idea and thought that they should add a singer. Heidi was also proud of them and said she thought Paul McCartney would be, too.
• Next was the magician Smoothini, whom the judges had advised to do something bigger. He still did close-up magic, using a ring he borrowed from Howie and a shoelace borrowed from host Nick Canon. They were pretty standard variations on the classic ring and rope tricks. Heidi was impressed, and Mel B. thought he'd stepped it up. Howie felt the audience might have connected with it this time, but Howard disagreed, saying he still didn't think it was big enough.
• Hand balancer Christian Stoinev began on top of a tall stand and then had his adorable dog ride in a plane through a projected hangar out to join him. The two did stunts together, including a somersault where the dog kept on top of him. At the very end, he revealed a second dog, in a box, as the first dog climbed back into his plane. Mel B. felt he didn't do enough stunts, and Heidi said she could watch him all the time. Howard felt it was "not your best night." Howie liked the entrance of the dog, Scooby.
• Young singer Quintavious Johnson, age 12, sang a soulful version of "I'd Rather Go Blind" by Etta james, wearing a gold tuxedo and matching bowtie. The kid has an old soul. Such masterful control of his voice, along with stage presence to boot. The judges gave him a standing o. Heidi called him a powerhouse. Mel B. said, "You've just got it." Howie thought that he could win the whole thing. Howard praised his wisdom beyond his years, for his song choice.

And now, my recap of the results show.
• The results show kicked off with a performance by Maroon 5. The song, "Maps," was very atmospheric at the beginning, reminding me of classic tracks by Sting or by The Police.
• In the recap of the previous night's performances, we saw both some dynamic clips of the night as well as comments from the judges table that were previously unheard, along with behind-the-scenes footage. It's always fun to see what we'd missed.
• First to be brought forward were the candidates for the Snapple Save: dance duo Blue Journey, hand balance/dog act Christian Stoinev and self-proclaimed "ghetto Houdini," magician Smoothini. Preliminary results, shown at the bottom of the screen, in real time, showed it was going to be a given for Blue Journey, taking over 40 percent of a three-way vote.
• Host Nick Canon then called up gymnastics group AcroArmy and salsa dance group Baila Conmigo. The act advancing, he revealed, was AcroArmy. That could be because they keep evolving and doing new things, whereas Baila Conmigo's act has been very similar week to week.
• Then was a very cute videotaped package depicting an alleged battle over fashion between judges Heidi and Mel B. They each tried to top the other with even more glamorous styles. My favorite was when Heidi wore sequined eyelashes.
• Next to hear results were cello-playing brothers Emil and Darien, singer Kelli Glover, and comic Wendy Liebman. The act going into the top 12, Nic revealed, was Emil and Darien. Reaction shot of their proud grandfather in the audience. Good choice, America. They are a talented couple of young guys.
• In another videotaped segment, Mel B. pretended to be a psychic, consulting tarot cards as she talked to people but actually reacting to information that Howie was feeding her, gleaned from family members of the subjects. Very funny.
• Then coming forward were the musical act Jonah Smith and magician Mat Franco. The next act moving on was Mat Franco. He looked surprised and relieved, but the choice was probably obvious to anyone sitting at home.
• Next to be brought forward were two male singers: Quintavious Johnson and Jaycob Curlee. The act moving on, Nick announced, was Quintavious Johnson. Given the kid's poise and vocal chops, few people could have been surprised.
• Then, Nick revealed that the recipient of the Snapple Save was Blue Journey. This left it up to the judges to determine whether to save Christian Stoinev and Smoothini. Mel B. felt that Christian had stumbled and was impressed with Smoothini but wondered if he was big enough. She voted for Christian. Howard felt that Christian blew it: too much of the cute dog, Scooby, and not enough strength tricks. But he felt that Smoothini's act was too small and sided with Christian. Howie thought both acts did well but voted for the bigger act, he said, because "size does matter." That meant he cast his vote for Christian, and with three votes, that put him through without hearing from Heidi. The credits rolled.

free web hit counter
Tags: america's got talent, dance, music, television

  • LJI Week 11: The Rainbow Picket Fence

    This is my entry for therealljidol. This week is an open topic, so I chose to write about something I've been thinking about a lot, ever since…

  • LJ Idol Survivor Week 11: Quake Zone

    This is my entry for this week of therealljidol (LJ Idol Survivor). The topic this week is "You Shook Me." As I punched in at the blue-plated…

  • LJ Idol Survivor: Voting

    There is currently a poll up at LJ Idol Survivor. Immunity is at stake! I'm in the top 6 right now, and if I make it past this week, I'll be in the…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.