AGT’s Last Quarterfinal Performances

William Close and the Earth Harp

The 36 acts that have performed during the live shows on America’s Got Talent have been disappointing to say the least. A lot of terrible acts have been through to the Top 48 and even some of the acts that have made it through to the semifinals did not deserve it. I have said from the very beginning that the judges did not find 48 talented acts. They followed protocol anyway. That is, until last night. Tuesday’s show proved two things: some people in America have talent and also that putting them against other people who do not is a bad idea.

David “The Bullet” Smith
There’s no question that David “The Bullet” has a unique ability. However, watching him fly through the air out of a cannon ball can only be done so many times. He got shot out of a cannon ball and landed on a net, just like he did in his audition. There’s no way this could sustain itself as a Vegas show. It’s just one of the acts that could be seen at the circus. Risking one’s life for the public’s amusement has been part of American culture for a long time, but it can get boring.

All That!
All That! is a technically skilled clogging group. They just aren’t that fun to watch. I don’t see these guys as people America will remember. Not everyone can learn to clog, but once people do there does not seem to be much variation. The one thing that sets this clogging group apart from other clogging groups is that what they dance to deviates from the tempo of traditional clogging. This time, they danced to an African American work song called “Black Betty.” The problem is they’re still boring. It’s easy to tell that something didn’t work when the most constructive comment from Sharon is for the men to change their outfits

Joe Castillo
Joe Castillo has a unique talent, it’s just not very exciting. His ability to create stories using light and sand is something that maybe only he can do. I highly doubt that it will make him famous. The judges highly praised him for his ability, but they seemed bored. Castillo did not seem to engage the audience either. The crowd followed every sand painting with a very tepid applause. It’s hard to say whether he will get voted though, but it really makes no difference.

Ulysses
Allowing  Ulysses to perform on live television was one of the biggest mistakes of the season. He has no idea how to engage an audience. Ulysses had been the most entertaining  before his initial audition. He may be a fun guy, but he is not talented. He sings television theme songs badly. Normal people in America like old television themes. They might even sing along. However, that doesn’t mean they should be given a chance to perform on national television and neither should Ulysses. His performance of the “American Bandstand” theme ended prematurely and yet not a moment too soon.

Sebastian De La Cruz
Being on America’s Got Talent is an experience that 10-year-old Sebastian De La Cruz will not think fondly of after he be grows up. He’s trying to be much older than his age. I highly doubt it was his idea alone to audition for the show. It doesn’t seem right for a prepubescent child to be singing love serenades. He cannot possibly relate to them. He seems too precocious for his own good. De La Cruz said after his performance that he’s one step closer to helping his brother. I really hope that makes enough of an impression on somebody with the capacity to help. He’s not winning the competition.

Eric Dittelman.
Mind reader Eric Dittelman is fun to watch and has a good talent. I just don’t think his act can sustain itself on a national level. The theme of his performance was Deal or No Deal. After Howie initially picked case 11, he had Sharon and Howard each pick one row of cases to remove. Howie then was asked if he’d like to keep his case or switch. He ended up switching. Howie ended up with the case 4, which is what Dittelman predicted he’d pick. The judges were amazed, but there’s really only so much a mind-reader can prove before it gets boring.

William Close and The Earth Harp Collectors
After the William Close’s performance with an instrument he created called the Earth Harp, AGT wasn’t really a competition anymore. I have been saying all season that the judges have failed to showcase true talent. In actuality, the producers of AGT have been really good at keeping Close hidden. He transforms the entire theater into his instrument, connecting strings up to the balcony.  Close’s band played The Who’s “Love, Reign O’er Me” to accompany the Earth Harp. The judges and the audience had a reaction unprecedented in the history of the show. After a long standing ovation, Howie said that the contest was “done”. Howard followed up by saying that even if Close doesn’t win, he would be willing to finance a show with him. All the judges agreed and Nick Cannon was shocked. After all, he’s still got a show to host and the judges were basically making the competition pointless. This is another display of Howard disregarding the show’s rules. Close is probably going to win, but if he doesn’t then America’s votes are a waste. The show is basically over.

The remaining acts:
Unity in Motion followed Close. They are a good dance act with some gymnastics element but they’re nothing special. There have been a lot of acts like them in past seasons. They may get voted through to the next round or they may not. Eric and Olivia were next, performing a slow version of Taio Cruz’s “Dynamite” that wasn’t very memorable. Solo dancer Lindsey Norton performed next. She’s certainly skilled but cannot hold an audience’s attention. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to buy a ticket to see her in Vegas. Horse was next. His act pretty much speaks for itself. It’s a kind of amazing that someone is able to sustain so much pain in the groin area, but America is going to be disgusted. Even though they’ll remember him, they’ll never want to hear about him again. Olate Dogs was the final act of the night. The tricks that these dogs perform are pretty amazing and they are incredibly well trained, but I think their act will get repetitive after a while.

If the competition is declared over by the judges in the quarterfinal stage, something is wrong with the show.  Howard, Sharon, and Howie are all willing to give a million dollars and a show to William Close. Sharon said it was as if Close was a professional act that doesn’t compare to the other acts. He’s already at a professional level. Trying to pretend he compares to the other acts is foolish. There’s still a lot of the season left. However, since the judges are willing to end the competition so explicitly, it’s not worth hoping for a better performer to come along.

Posted on July 25, 2012, in NBC, Network Television, Primetime, Reality TV and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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