As perfection has eluded me through five rounds of America's Got Talent
quarterfinal predictions and two additional semifinal rounds, I have but one (not so) bold prognostication when it comes to the six finalists: this is not the week that trend will change.
This is not because I lack faith in my fortune-telling abilities; quite the contrary. In fact, I predicted you would take the poll at the bottom of this article, and then some of you would comment (but not you!). I also know who should advance and who I want to advance, but in such a wide-open field after a night packed with talent, we could be in store from some crazy surprises. Some of which I won't like at all.
Still, I'm going to go with my gut and hope the voters agree. So which acts are moving on and which ones are headed home? Let's break it down.
Kenichi Ebina: I thought he had earned the pimp spot after two original and innovative performances, but he was denied that chance. He toned it down this week to show off more dance moves and emotion, and while I didn't love it as much those other two, his talent still shines above most of the other acts.
Cami Bradley: If Kenichi wasn't going to get the pimp spot, I was glad it was her. And she backed it up with another mesmerizing performance with an original take on a Bon Jovi karaoke favorite. She should end up being a star whether she wins or not.
Forte: They've never been less than stellar.
The KriStef Brothers: They are entertaining, to say the least, even as they press the boundaries of what is actually comfortable to watch. They keep upping their game, offering something new each time, though I doubt their ability to win it all.
Taylor Williamson: Like I said in the rankings, he is growing on me. That being said, I wouldn't be devastated if it was the end of the line for him. But he's unique among the remaining acts.
The Will Go Homers
Branden James: He had his best performance to date, in my opinion, but he just doesn't compare to Forte. It also doesn't help that he went early in the show, well before the three tenors, which stacks the odds against him even further. As Jonathan Allen proved, there just aren't enough opera votes to go around.
Chicago Boyz: This one pains me more than any cut this season. I love these guys, particularly their energy, timing and precision, but I don't see how they overcome going first in the show and committing a major flub. I think they totally made up for that mistake, but it's much easier to remember the negative when you're comparing to 11 other acts.
Catapult: I'm gonna go out on a limb and say America is with me and not the judges on this one. I dunno, I watched it twice and I still didn't get the overhyping. I'm not taking away from the shadow work, and obviously everyone is talented at this point. I just don't find the stories nearly as compelling as I'm supposed to. And I'm bothered by backstory sympathy ploys from acts I don't particularly like.
The My-Following-Is-Better-Than-I-Am Group
Jimmy Rose: For the life of me, I can't figure out why this guy keeps getting such great show positions. Two pimp spots and a second-to-last (which ranks 3.5 out of 4 b*tch slaps on the pimp spot scale)? Is the coal industry an AGT sponsor or something? Jimmy will probably have some sort of career in country music and he clearly has a large group of supporters, but I'm almost positive he's going to knock out someone who deserves to be in the finals more than he does.
Collins Key: I wonder if his pacing issues would continue with the massive throngs of young girls lining up to date the heartthrob of magic. Maybe that's how he could improve his stage presence? Still, his tricks are pretty amazing, and one day he'll perfect the art. I expect his raving fan base to propel him into the sixth (deserving) spot in the finals.
The Wild Cards
Innovative Force: They seem to have quite a following, even with my waning support over the last two weeks. I thought their early routines were spectacular, but the last two lacked the creativity that made them an -- wait for it -- innovative force in the competition. The only thing I see them winning is the "Bill King Overused Pun" award. But the support is there.
D'Angelo and Amanda: I do not see a place in the finals for this pair of creepy ballroom dancing kids, but I didn't think they'd make it last year as part of the Untouchables, either. Somehow, America seems to love tiny kid ballroom dancers. Much like they love country music. Doesn't mean I have to understand it.
So my hope is that Forte, Cami Bradley, Kenichi Ebina, the KriStef Brothers, Taylor Williamson and Collins Key are the six finalists.
But talent and getting votes are two different things, so my predictions are Collins Key, Jimmy Rose, Taylor Williamson, Kenichi Ebina, Innovative Force and a 6th-place/7th-place vote between Forte and Cami Bradley, in which case all four judges' heads will simultaneously explode and we'll have a top 7 instead of a top 6.
For the first time this season, I actually hope I'm wrong.
Which six acts do you want in the finals, and are those the same acts you think will get through?
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