America's Got Talent Recap
Nick's on a football field, declaring this the biggest audition of all time. Howard got to bring his dad last week, so this week, Howie has brought his mom. Sharon is late... and she's working the crowd. By "working", I mean "touching" and Howie is appalled. The germs! The germs, people! Sharon has cooties after mixing with the masses! Howie refuses to let his mother hug her.
We see a sweet older man who has a little bear puppet firmly attached to his shoulder. This is Tom Bonham, a retired computer consultant who now fancies himself a puppeteer. Ah, that's too harsh. He is a puppeteer. He's got these sweet little crude handmade creatures that are kind of cute, in a strictly amateur way, and if he were a grandpa in my community and wanted to show off his puppets to the kids in my library story time, I think he'd get a very nice response. He has a sweet little hobby.
Million dollar act? Not in a million years. Howie kindly keeps his hand off the buzzer and lets the sweet little grandpa finish. Howard pretends to reconsider - hey, man, stop with the head games. Just admit it's a kid's act at best and get him in touch with a local kindergarten. Howie entreats Mr. Bonham, "Do not give up the dream!" and I say he's got an audience somewhere. He just has to find it.
There's a blonde who can neither sing nor play the drums, but she's pretending to be the only person in the band who showed up...she just wanted to get on television. Then we have some chick who has a talent for making soda cans explode... boy, that was messy. And harder than it looks; Nick can't do it. Why would he want to, exactly? But I will say this - she was more interesting than the guy in the chicken suit. There's a lasso act so bad Sharon's buzzed him before he has his rope out, and Howard takes great care to buzz him with his butt. But then Howard is challenged to try this himself... wow, the view is intimidating from the stage... but it's still a no.
And then... here comes complete cuteness. This boy just radiates adorable. His name is Isaac Ryan Brown, he's six, and he's got a sparkling personality. He can already see himself winning that million dollars... and he'd be so happy... he'd have... what's that thing? A limo! Ok, he's cute. Is he any good?
Isaac hits the stage, and he's astonished by the fact that one judge is Howie and one is Howard. "You two guys names sound the same!" he quips, and by this time he's got the audience eating out of his hand. But what can he do? He can sing and dance? Can he?
Yeah, he's singing "Want You Back" by the Jackson Five. He's not going to make anybody forget Michael; he's a little off-key in places, and the movies are a little clunky, but the cute factor is off the charts and he's very well prepared. Howie calls him a superstar. Isaac says that all that matters is that it comes from the heart, and every heart in the audience melts. Sharon says he has star quality, and asks for a kiss. Howard agrees that he's not annoying. Isaac celebrates his trip to Las Vegas by pretending to faint. I am not sure this boy can win, because he's not a heartthrob male singer, but... he might just make the finals.
Spencer Horseman is the world youngest escape artist, at least that he knows of for sure. He promises that the act he's doing this evening is very dangerous and he could get mangled or killed performing it. Sounds fun. Spencer puts on a strait jacket and heads out to meet the judges. His act; he's got about a minute and a half to release himself from the strait jacket before a huge, menacing metal trap (which will be set on fire) traps him in its jaws of flaming death. Now, that's entertainment. I will feel so guilty if this kid dies trying to amuse me.
Spencer is suspended head-down under that contraption. A rope that holds the trap open is set on fire; when it burns through, it will snap. Nick gets very concerned when it appears the strait jacket is stuck; the crowd is getting genuinely concerned... but then his arms are free, and he's struggling to get the jacket off his body... and in classic Hollywood storytelling mode, he jumps out of the trap just before the fire licks through the rope and the trap snaps. Standing ovation. I think, if the judges had not put him through, there might have been a riot.
A girl's dancing group called the Clog Academy has to follow that. They are a little anti-climactic, since nobody looked for even a moment like they were going to die a fiery death, but their dancing is neat and precise, and they have a cute little five year old girl as an adorable accent. They will go to Vegas. They will get no further.
Svet does an interesting thing he calls "hip-hop violin." It's interesting. It's not a million dollar act, but it's interesting. And then we just have a montage of the judges saying yes to people and we don't even know why.
And here's a white straight male singer! His name is Jake Wesley Rogers. He sings and plays guitar, and he's better than Kevin Skinner, though he has no sob story to tell. He's calm, confident and very professional, and he'd be a major contender if he looked less dorky. He goes to Vegas.
Then we have a little person with a little impersonation act. He calls himself.. Little Ozzy. And he thinks Sharon Osborne has absolutely got to see this. This is his fate, his destiny. He comes out, all Ozzied out in black clothes with long, stringy black hair and Ozzy's trademark grimace. Sharon almost loses it. Howard imagines Ozzy snoring in his chair as he ignores this, but Sharon says he's at a dog show.
Ozzy Ozbourne at a dog show. I hope he's not eating them.
Little Ozzy begins to sing "Mama, I'm Coming Home" and Sharon gets a little emotional at the song Ozzy wrote for her. The first verse is kind of pretty and sweet, but then he gets very nasal on the second, and both men buzz him. Sharon? Not on your life. Little Ozzy, you heartbreaker. You have her just where you want her. Even as the audience starts to scream and boo, the lady stands by this little imposter of her man. She WILL let him finish. Oh, hush, folks, I don't think he was THAT bad. Quitcher bitching, he'll be done charming Sharon in a minute. Of course, half the entertainment is the look on her face; you'd think it was actually Ozzy, for a second there. At the conclusion, Howie says no. Sharon thanks him so much for the serenade... but she says no. Howard says that Little Ozzy should hug Sharon, and the crowd that was booing his singing a moment before is roaring their approval at this short embrace.
The Cut Throat Freak Show might just make everybody want Little Ozzy back. They are three people who uh.... gross us all out and make us cringe with their really painful stunts. Candy Pants stomps through broken beer bottles; the second guy lifts a chair with his eyelids. Eric Odditorium is a creepy sword swallower. Their act is gross, horrifying, dangerous, terrible to watch, and it does not get a single buzz. It's like the judges were so horrified they forgot they had the power to stop it. The guys vote yes, and this gruesome trio is on to Vegas, unless they all get tetanus in rehearsal. Sharon can't vote for it.
Ron Christopher Porter Junior is SO excited to be here! He wants to do movie voiceovers. How in blazes is he going to make an act out of this? Well... he assumes the vocal tics that you might hear in a very intense movie announcer, and uses that tone to narrate his own story. The audience actually gets the joke, and he gets a lot of applause... but Howard Stern breaks his little heart and blows his little mind with a buzz that says, "This is not a million dollar act." Yeah, you liked the lady who danced on broken glass, Howard. Uh.... why is that guy lying on the ground in a crumpled mess of misery? Call me cynical, but I think he's faking it. He recovers awfully fast. Howie's got the whole voiceover thing nailed, and he conducts the vote in the same spooky announcer voice; Howard and Sharon both say no, and then Ron wants Nick's job. He will settle for hanging out with him, and they hug like guys doing exaggerated comedy for a goofy TV show.
Ron is hanging out with Nick. Nick, ditch this guy fast. Haven't you ever seen All About Eve? At any rate, Ron announces the last act, Curtis Cutts Bey. This truck driver is mangling "Give It To Me Baby" by Rick James, and he's the first act I've ever seen get three Xes simultaneously. Nick and Ron decide to give this last act a little moral support, so they run on out to be his backup dancers. Now, think about all those bad auditioners for American Idol. Can you see Ryan Seacrest coming on the stage to be their backup singer? No? He takes himself too seriously? Really, isn't this strange show kind of great? These guys will be taking their show on the road, coming soon to a kareoke bar near you.