America’s Got Talent is supposed to be feel-good fare, despite the fact that it has famous TV villain Simon Cowell at the helm. But on Wednesday’s semifinals results show, the series pulled a mean-spirited stunt that even Simon (who’s been on hiatus for the past few weeks recovering from a back injury) wouldn’t attempt, when host Terry Crews — or, more accurately, AGT producers — crushed the dreams of two contestants on live television.
So, this is how the AGT elimination process typically goes down: After Terry announces the three at-risk, middle-packer contestants up for the Dunkin’ Save instant vote (this week, those three were aerialist Alan Silva, soul singer Archie Williams, and drumming wonder Malik Dope, with Alan and Archie surviving), he reads off the rest of the results, calling up two contestants at a time. Then, one of those two contestants makes it through, while the other contestant automatically goes home. Therefore, when Terry summoned yo-yo duo Spyros Bros and Miami troupe Dance Town Family to the stage this Wednesday, those two acts naturally assumed that they each had a 50/50 chance of advancing to the Season 15 finals. Because, like I said, that’s how this show usually works.
“Please step forward. The finals are in two weeks, and we have two acts for one spot,” Terry announced. “America has voted. And the first act going into the finals is... none of you!”
Wow. Not cool, Terry. Not cool!
To be honest, neither Spyros Bros nor Dance Town Family deserved a spot in the finals, so it was a bit of a relief to learn that they hadn’t taken one of those spots from two of this season’s standout contestants, child-prodigy singer Roberta Battaglia and spoken-word artist Brandon Leake. (Country duo Broken Roots also advanced, which was hardly shocking, though I would’ve preferred it if their spot had gone to a different country contestant, power-singer Shaquira McGrath.) Spyros Bros literally dropped the ball twice during their Tuesday performance, and Dance Town Family, an already-eliminated and previously little-seen act that was inexplicably brought back as a semifinals wild card, never stood a chance in the first place. But Terry’s fakeout had me — and certainly the visibly annoyed Spyros — suffering flashbacks to that night on American Idol Season 5, when Ryan Seacrest fooled Chris Daughtry into thinking he’d made the top three, only to pull a cruel switcharoo.
And I wasn’t alone in thinking that Wednesday’s suspense tactic was nasty and unnecessary. “@AGT YALL RUDE AS F***ING HELL CALLING UP @spyrosbros AND LITERALLY SAYING NEITHER OF THE TWO GROUPS MADE IT. YALL GOT SOME DAMN NERVE!!!!!!!!!!” tweeted one particularly irate, capslock-dependent viewer.
1st act into the finals is . . . Neither of these two, Dance town family and Spyros bros? Ouch! #AGT— Jason Eldridge (@Dueler312) September 10, 2020
Well that was rude. Looks like we about to have America’s Got Singers. #AGT— Trevor | folklore (@trevorkmiller) September 10, 2020
@AGT Not cool giving us hope that Spyros Bros had a chance to go onto the finals and then yanking it away!! 😡— Erin Stout (@iluvtadpole2001) September 10, 2020
#agt that was so harsh terry, smh.... nah im kidding but i am sad! i loved spyros bros— Ryein (@fryhime) September 10, 2020
Anyway, also out of the running, after Wednesday’s results were revealed, were feisty singing sister act Double Dragon and fallen footballer/TikTok-er Thomas Day; Thomas’s undoing may have been his dishonesty regarding his real reason for temporarily dropping out of the show, or the viewing audience’s general consensus that it had been unfair to bring him back as a wild card and allow him to bypass two steps of the competition. Hopefully next week, the America’s Got Talent powers-that-be will choose their wild cards more wisely — and deliver their results more nicely.
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