'America's Got Talent': Fire batons rule

Sharonosbourne_americasgottalent_24 I'm anxious to find out who was kicked out last week. I'm only 3-2 so far in my predictions, so I'm curious as to how I do. In the intro, we get clips from last week and I just don't need to see more shots of the crying street-fighting girl. Sad! Just to recap, my picks were Beyond Belief, Kazual, ZOOperstars, Daniel the Soldier and Queen Emily.

The acts performing tonight are the Texas State Strumpets, Michael Strelo-Smith (opera singer), Bruce Block (bed of nails guy), Shequida (drag queen opera singer), the Taubl Family Singers, Jonathan Burkin (baton twirler kid), Sarah Lenore (Carrie Underwood Lite), Sickstep (hip-hop group), Matthew Piazzi (bad impressions guy) and Joseph Hall (hot Elvis). My initial picks (of who I like, not who WILL go through) are Shequida, the Tauble Family, Jonathan Burkin, Sickstep and Hot Elvis.

But first, we have an elimination. When we introduce the judges, Piers defends his buzzing last week by saying "we're not running a tea party here" and Jerry responds with "the last time we had a tea party, you guys lost!" Ya know what? Scripted or not, that was decently chuckle-worthy. We welcome back last Wednesday's contestants for the elimination. As long as George the Giant and the Slippery Kittens get eliminated, I'm okay with whoever goes through.

Our first pair is Paul Salos and Slippery Kittens. If there IS a God in heaven, Paul Salos is going through. Dear lord, get rid of the skanky moms. And then Paul Salos is through and he's so excited! The next pair is Jonathan Arons and The Wright Kids. Hmm, tough one. I'm hoping for The Wright Kids because I'd like to see them do bluegrass instead of The Monkees. The one going through is... The Wright Kids! Yay! Next up are Soldier Daniel and George the Giant. Obviously Daniel is through. Next up are Kazual and Queen Emily. Well, Kazual is done. The last duo is Beyond Belief Dance Company and the ZOOperstars. Well, I'm a ZOOperstars fan. Dance teams are a dime a dozen, honestly. The ZOOps are original and creative.

Piers jokes that this is obviously a difficult decision because the dancers are talented and the ZOOperstars are stupid. Man, I really hope Sharon and Hoff vote for ZOOp. PIers votes for Beyond Belief. Sharon doesn't want to choose, but I hope she forces The Hoff to decide, unlike last week. Sharon votes for the ZOOperstars! YAY! The Hoff blathers on for awhile... and votes for the ZOOperstars! YAY!!!! I'm 6-4 so far. Hopefully this week I predict a bit better.

The Texas State Strumpets kick it off tonight, wearing their fringe-lined best! The spokesgirl says they are a "precision" dance team, which is pretty funny because they don't always move as one entity. Tonjight they are wearing pick sparkly tops and black shirts and dance to "Boogie Wonderland." When they do their kick-line, I notice there are some heftier girls in the dance group. Huh. It's honestly pretty boring and PIers buzzes them right at the time I type that sentence. This is weak. NEXT! Sharon buzzes them right when I type "NEXT." We are so IN SYNC tonight. The Hoff does not buzz The Hoff buzzes as I type that. Wow. Pretty poor showing, Strumpets. Piers says boring, Sharon says there isn't some consistency because some dancers are better than others, The Hoff just says it wasn't totally together. The whole they are getting these poor critiques, the crazy 'luuded Strumpets are smiling like pageant queens. Gross.

Next up is Michael Strelo-Smith, the other big opera singer. He sings "I Am What I Am" from La Cage Aux Folles. It's not good. The lower stuff is baaaaad. He can't reach it, so he just tries to reach it and is horribly off-key. Yikes. He gets buzzed right away by Sharon and Piers. He's basically hoping to float by on a big ending, which is what a lot of American Idol contestants do, so maybe he'll make it. Piers thought it was very karaoke, Sharon says good determination, but not good enough, The Hoff (masquerading as Paula "Good times girl" Abdul) says that he did a damn good job. No, he really didn't. Ugh.

Bruce Block the Bed of Nails Guy is next. This guy is so weird. I hope he sitll has the tap-dancing baton-twirling girl in red, white & blue. That was the best part of his act! Even better! He comes out with five midgets dressed as scientists and nurses. They bring out two people in a horse costume and say they are going to put a horse back together, then when they open the case, there is a pony inside. Huh. Weird. Piers says he blew it, Sharon asks the horse to stay, The Hoff says he was confused. Yes.

Shequida is our next act. She tells us that Shequida started as a joke at a costume party, but that now he's a black drag queen opera singer from Jamaica. Wow. That's pretty awesome, I hope he gets through. He sings "I WIll Survive." It's all opera-style, though, and it's pretty harsh on my ears. Why didn't he just stick with opera songs? Or just sing this song as a disco number? The cross-genre thing does not work in this case, I'm afraid. Piers says it was too shrieky (yes), Sharon says it was too high, The Hoff says tonight was campy because it wasn't opera. YES! That is exactly right, The Hoff is on the nose.

Up next we have The Taubl Family (the Wright Kids grown up and times 3). In their initial audition, they actually did "The Sound of Music." I REALLY REALLY want this time to be "The Lonely Goat-Herder." Alas, they choose instead to do... "Umbrella" by Rihanna? Uhhh... okay. That's creepy. They are barely playing their instruments. They are just standing there, ankle-deep in smoke and smiling all Children-of-the-Corn and really skeeving me out. Hmm. Piers loved it, saying it totally works. Huh. Sharon says it was grim tonight until the Taubls. The Hoff loved it. My lord, was anybody else totally weirded out by these guys?

Jonathan Berkin, our baton twirler, is the next act. I like this kid, I hope he does well. Also because baton twirling is just cool. He twirls to "I'm Still Standing," which is awesome. There are some backdrops of videos of flames while he twirls his flaming batons and lights the stage on fire. It's a very flame-heavy performance. My high school Great Books teacher would be horrified at how un-subtle the symbolism is. However... that performance was awesome. Seriously, that was fantastic. Good for him. Piers says "incredible" and makes a joke about the Olympic relay team because he never drops his baton (HAHA! PIERS!), Sharon says sensational, The Hoff says it could sustain a Vegas show.

Our next act is Sarah Lenore, the Other Blonde Female SInger Who is Not the Sad Factory Worker. She talks about how her dad would drive trucks 12 hours a day and STILL take her to auditions, so as to rub it in to Jessica the Factory Worker Who Has No Dad. Harsh, Sarah. Harsh. She comes out to some wicked Heart smoke and lighting and big hair and then sings "I'm Not Ready to Make Nice" and I'm actually... surprised at how good it is. I'm actually hoping for a cookie-cutter singer to make it through. I don't like these foreign, weird feelings. Make them stop. Piers says she looked incredibly nervous, but that suddenly it was stunning. Yes. Sharon and The Hoff concur.

Sickstep is up next. I actually like them a lot better than most of the other dance acts. They dance to James Brown "Get up Offa That Thing," and it's awesome. THey have basketball hoops and a stop sign and recreate a great street scene. With how weak tonight has been so far, these guys absolutely deserve to go through. Very well done. Piers says damn good, Sharon says they lit up the stage, Hoff says sick. Absolutely.

Our penultimate act tonight is Matthew Piazzi, the bad impersonator. Ugh. I am cringing already about this dude. He starts off with Arnold, goes to Jack, VInce Vaughn, George Clooney and then goes into various stars doing "Great Balls of Fire." Hmm. This is where it goes off the rails. It was actually kinda funny until he started doing "Great Balls of Fire." If he wanted to do this song, he should've done it as Goose and Maverick. That's really the version. Piers thinks he blew it switching to the singing and piano. Yes, absolutely. Sharon liked it, The Hoff loved it. Of course he did.

Joseph Hoff is our 10th lil' Indian tonight. He is the Hot Elvis and he sings "Jailhouse Rock" and I throw my panties at the TV. This is my very favorite Elvis song. Unfortunately, the vocals are pretty weak. It's like he can't hear the accompaniment or something. This is pretty bad. Poor Joseph. I kind of hope he gets through and gets another chance. "Jailhouse Rock" is just too hard. He got too out of breath. Piers observes that the guys are going "boo" and the girls are going crazy. He does think the singing was wobbly tonight. That's one way of putting it. Sharon says it'll get better the more he practices, but that tonight he's lost his naughtiness from the first time he performed. Heh heh, I like dirty Sharon. The Hoff liked it, but sympathizes with singing and dancing being hard to do.

Recap: the Strumpets putting me to sleep, Michael Sterlo-Smith making me long for Neal E. Boyd (yikes), Bruce Block scaring me with little people, Shequida not bringing it as much as she has before, The Taubl Family skeeving me the eff out and yet turning out to be one of the strongest acts, Jonathan Burkin being AWESOME, Sarah Lenore being AWESOME too, Sickstep doing some sick steps (see what I did there?), Matthew Piazzi not being remotely funny, and Joseph Hoff blowing it.

Who should go through?  Any 2 of the Shequida, Joseph Hoff or The Taubls, so they can get another chance, Jonathan Burkin and Sarah Lenore just for being amazing, and Sickstep.

Tune in tomorrow for the last group of 10, including Nuttin but Stringz, cutie 4 year-old Caitlin and the creepy hooker twins from Romania.