America’s Got Talent 2019 Season 14 premieres TONIGHT (May 28) on NBC. New judges Julianne Hough and Gabrielle Union join veterans Simon Cowell and Howie Mandel on the panel. Terry Crews from the Champion’s edition is the new host. We’re live blogging all the performances with video here.
Congratulations to Howie Mandel. He’s the old man on the panel. 10 years! Terry calls Simon Cowell “most honest man in the world.” LOL SURE.
Greg Morton – 60 – Comedian/Impressionist – Greg has been waiting for his big break all of his life! He’s doing a Star Wars bit that isn’t very funny. He’s sorta getting the voices down. He also does sound effects. It’s not really an act? The bit comes off more like an audition reel. Which is probably what it is. Greg says he wants to do voices for a living. Maybe the exposure will help. The judges are standing for him. AND HE’S CRYING. This is a little weird. Howie can’t believe there isn’t a banner in Vegas with his headline on it. Gabrielle assures him “This is your turn.” Julianne would buy a ticket to his show right now. Simon calls it a “very special moment.” 4 yeses.
Eric Chien – 26 – Magician – He’s from Houston. As a kid, he loved watching magic on TV. Magic helped him get through tough times. He’s aware the winner last year, Shin Lim, was also an Asian close-up magic dude. It makes him even more nervous. He has only been performing for 6 months and is still getting used to big audiences. Poor guy is SUPER AWKWARD and obviously nervous. He does card tricks too. Just like Shin. Once he gets going though, he loses the nerves and is actually pretty good. He does a thing where the backs of the cards magically change color. And cards just freaking disappear into thin air. Also cards turn into coins and vice versa. AND HIS VEST KEEPS CHANGING COLORS. That was crazy. Howie likes his sincerity. Gabrielle calls him “magic….you are amazing.” Julianne assures him, that he “doesn’t have to compare himself to anyone.” Simon calls it “a different level” and “you’re one of the best we’ve ever had.” 4 yeses.
Sophie Pecora – 15 – Singing Youtube star – She was a shy child, who started a Youtube channel as a place to connect and perform her original songs. She’ll be singing a self-penned tune tonight called “7th Grade.” Oh. She’s an acoustic rapper. Or whatever that talk/singing thing she’s doing is. It’s a page out of diary. She reminds me a little of the AGT 2016 winner Grace Vanderwaal. She was 12 years old and sang original songs that served as little slices of tween life. After, Sophie receives a big standing ovation. Gabrielle says “You spoke to me, and I’m 46. You held us all captive.” Howie calls her unique, but really relatable. Julianne says her music is “true” which is why it resonated. Simon likes her “cool” delivery. – 4 yeses.
The following is an extended bit that follows Julianne’s journey to becoming a hard-a**
Monkey – JOKE CONTESTANT. He claims to be a professional dancer. He comes out in a monkey mask and ballerina tutu. He’s on point at least. He gets 4 Xs, but only after Simon pushes Julianne’s buzzer. She actually gives him a serious critique.
Andy Pigkens – Weird pig act – UHM. She’s still attempting to give a constructive critique to a ridiculous joke act.
Vitamin Magic Clown – Weird Clown – Gabrielle says he did not help her fear of clowns. “There’s something for everybody!” Julianne chirps. So this is SOOO a bit.
Bad Guru Guy – Julianne has an easier time hitting her button.
Liz Chuday – Comedian – For some reason, she’s barking. Julianne hardly wastes a second hitting the buzzer.
Purgatory – Dressed in a black beatnik getup, who knows what’s going on. Oh they’re singing “meow meow meow.” Julianne buzzes them right away, and isn’t even nice about it. Simon loves them!
Insta Girl – We only got about a second of that, before Julianne hits the ole buzzer.
Stacey Michelle Newsom – Bad, bad singing. Julianne says, “I didn’t get it.” And coming full circle, she hits Simon’s button when he compliments the act. DEFINITELY A BIT.
Patrizio Ratto – Dancer – Italian guy goes on about studying classical piano and loving Beethoven as a kid. He starts playing a standard classical piece, but then breaks out the crazy moves. He strips off and begins to pop and lock. I would say that was unexpected, except I had looked him up on the internet a few days so….Yeah, he’s actually a dancer. He ends the performance on one knee playing one last note. Julianne felt he executed his dancing well. Howie felt it was a seamless mixture of disparate art forms. Gabrielle calls him “sexy.” He’s single! “Without people like you, we don’t have a show,” says Simon. – 4 yeses
V.Unbeatable – Dance Troupe – The leader becomes emotional talking about how hard life is in the slums of Mumbai India, where the members are from. They live in crowded, dirty slums. America’s Got Talent is the group’s “dream come true.” The troupe’s performance was released as a preview. And no wonder. There’s a ton of tumbling in this mixture of Indian dance, hip hop and gymnastics. The little ones are tossed so high in the air, the group is almost a danger act. The use of wooden bamboo sticks as props is clever. These young men will go far. “You guys blew us all away,” says Gabrielle. Julianne calls it “brilliant” and “history in the making.” Howie thinks they just made their future. Simon says, “one of the best dance acts we’ve ever had on one of these shows.” Oh. SIMON FINALLY ADMITS the AGT is really WORLD’S GOT TALENT. 4 yeses
Jackie Fabulous – 47 – Comedian – Her family from the Bronx is originally from Jamaica–conservative and strict. She got a law degree, married and realized it was all a mistake. She handled her own divorce, and then discovered comedy. She’s been struggling over 13 years. But she loves it. Her mother is still mad about it! She tells some fat jokes, via her very honest Jamaican mother. She hates The Biggest Loser (Ha, a former NBC show. I hated that too). Jackie’s idea for a show: “Get a bunch of fatties and lock them in a donut shop.” She ends with a few predictable Facebook jokes. Gabrielle says, “Way to go.” Simon says, “Thank God for you…you are hilarious. I want to hang out with you.” Julianne calls it naughty and fabulous. Howie calls her a superstar. “I need to kiss you,” says Simon. And…he takes the stage for a hug and kiss on the cheek. Jackie was a little disappointed. She wanted some mouth action (YUCK). 4 yeses
Ginzilla – Fabulous and gender fluid – Appeared on X Factor UK 2018 – Ginzilla is from Australia. “I’m a 7 foot ginger bearded glam monster.” OK! Godzilla’s mother was ‘very strong.” Ginzilla means “absolute freedom” and is the love child of Jessica Rabbit and Chuck Norris. Ginzilla sings “She’s a Lady” in a big booming masculine voice. This is pretty crazy. And funny. Simon will keep this act around for a little while, I suspect. Howie thinks Ginzilla could go “really far.” Julianne sees Ginzilla in Vegas. Simon calls it “fantastic” and acts like he never saw the act before. Hm. “You should get used to this kind of reaction,” says Gabrielle. 4 yeses.
Human Fuze – Danger act – The Human Fuse works with the help of his wife. He’s been a thrill seeker all of his life. Lucky for him, the wife is a registered nurse. He’s broken 18 bones. At 55, he’s feeling the wear and tear. If he wins, he plans to retire. His act consists of lighting himself on fire while his wife shoots him out of a catapult. He has bruised ribs right now…after slipping in a puddle. The act takes place outside of the theater. He will fly 110 feet in the air while aflame. I bet this is a two parter. AND YEP. After he’s lit and shot off…here comes Haley Reinhart’s car commercial. OK we’re back. He flies through the air, and lands on his back, right where he is supposed to be. He’s still on fire, which I am sure is part of the act. Assistants extinguish the flames, and of course he’s OK. Back inside, Howie calls it “thrilling.” Gabrielle says, “You wowed the audience.” Julianne calls it “ridiculously amazing.” Simon wants to know where he goes next. “Toledo,” he quips. Next time, Simon wants him to jump over something that could eat him. One trick acts like this usually don’t get very far in the competition. 4 yeses.
Kodie Lee – singer/pianist – Kodie is 22. Mom helps him out on stage. She explains that he is blind and autistic. He loved music early on, and began singing and playing. Music has saved his life, she says. He sits at the piano and performs “A Song for You.” So yeah. He’s a savant. He’s a better piano player than singer. Actually, if he were able bodied, he probably wouldn’t get through the bookers. But he has a nice falsetto. Kodie gets a big ovation. The only question is which judge will hit their golden buzzer, right? Howie calls him a great inspiration and talent. Julianne “feels” his heart and passion. “I heard you and I felt you.” Simon calls it “extraordinary” and his voice “fantastic.” Gabrielle is a new judge and a new mom, so she relates. GABRIELLE RELATES SO MUCH SHE HITS HER GOLDEN BUZZER. Aw. Kodie is jumping up and down, he’s so happy. Mom is crying. The Golden Buzzer means Kodie skips the judge cuts straight to the live shows.
This new panel is way too agreeable. And for that reason, I miss Heidi Klum, who was actually the toughest of the four judges. She said no to a lot of acts. Sometimes she’d be the only no. But often, she seemed like the voice of reason. The powers that be should have kept her on. But hey. Time to trade Heidi in for a younger, blonder, model (coughjuliannehoughcough) amiright? Ugh.
Having said all that, my favorite acts were the magician Eric Chien who will, unfortunately, suffer comparisons to Shin Lim. Both are good! I also enjoyed the hilarious Ginzilla. Hope they make it past the judge cuts!