Twelve more acts perform on this episode of America’s Got Talent for a chance at a million dollars (and a Vegas act? Or is that still not the case anymore?). Sharon’s bones are telling her the bar will be raised even higher this week.

Attack Dance Crew is first to the stage. The producers have decided that large dance groups are a good way to open the show. The back story with these guys is that Howie doesn’t like/”get” them. I get what Howie’s saying about it seeming a little cheerleader-y, but these guys are good! I like them better than the Miami All-Stars, who made it in last week. Piers wasn’t “massively keen” on the choreography and thought it could have been tighter. Piers needs to go home and watch Strictly Ballroom (like he does every night, or every night he’s not watching Shall We Dance). Sharon thought it was OK, and Howie agreed with Piers. He still doesn’t get it.

Dani Shay! I really like her, and not just because she looks like Justin Bieber. That is old news. She’s singing a David Gray song this time, rather than a comedic rendition of a Bieber song. Dani Shay was visibly (and audibly) nervous, and was given the unfortunate second spot in the lineup of twelve. Still, the judges had kind words for her. Howie thinks she chose a bad song, Piers thought she was a little off-key. Her moment with Nick Cannon before the numbers ran was quite endearing.

Geechy Guy is still in this. If there’s any comedy act that’s suitable for AGT, it might be this one. He opened with two Whoopie Cushion Dancers (yes, that’s a thing someone is getting paid to be), then went to his one-liners, which are actually funny. Piers gave him an X. Nick Cannon liked it, exclaiming, “Poupon me!” as he ran onstage. Howie isn’t sure how much further Geechy Guy will go, but he likes him as a comic. Piers hated it (whatever!), comparing it to being smashed over the head with a hammer. Sharon thought it was silly.

Daniel Joseph Baker is another one of my favorite personalities this season. He is darling, yet fierce. Sharon describes DJB’s “exuberance,” which I take to mean she wonders if people will be turned off by him probably being gay. But come on, zebra piano, “Edge of Glory,” dancing and stage antics that almost actually work with what he’s going for? SOLD. We (the judges and I) like him. Howie called him “Lady Guy-Guy,” which I’m not sure should be ok.

The Rhinestone Ropers are a real-life Old West-style act. Something for everyone! And now, they’ve added a horse. Yay! The horse picked up the cowboy hat, and didn’t want to wear it (presumably). Then the horse didn’t want to wear the blanket. Then he nudged the cowboy in the butt. So the cowboy hopped onto the horse and swung a big lasso, which was the grand finale. Nick Cannon came out with a big poop shovel because he loves poop jokes. But man, this was a real step down from what we saw from the Rhinestone Ropers the first time. Sharon was right, it wasn’t exciting. They tried to defend themselves against Piers, but Piers got outright rude with them. It got SO awkward. It’s Pup and the accordion all over again.

Who is Dylan Andre? Hobbies include: singing, contemplating, playing guitar, and walking by the beach/docks. Predictably, he is singing a John Mayer song. He’s good, but I don’t want to see another singer win this whole thing. Piers thought it was pleasant but nothing he would pay to see. We can all agree it was pleasant. Piers says he is not the droids million dollar act they’re looking for.

Landon Swank is the magician who folded up a girl for his audition. But not just any girl, I think that hot girl is his hot wife? We’re worried for Landon because his whole rehearsal day was spent constructing his trick! Landon was smart to involve Nick Cannon in his trick. Nick Cannon is working overtime for these people tonight. Nick wrote his first name on one side, then his last name on the other side of the mirror. Then Landon Swank climbed through the mirror. It was a slow build to a decent reveal. But it was a good trick!

I haven’t been a big fan of the Smage Bros. Riding Shows because you know, it’s motorcycles and I can never tell if they’re doing what they intended to do with their tricks. It looks like he almost didn’t make it onto that dumpster. It reminds me of Jeremy Van Schoonhoven, who has a much more fun name to say. I don’t know, though. Smage. Oh, and they almost smashed their friend’s face at the end there. The judges liked it, but it must be more exciting in person.

There’s something about jugglers that I like, and Thomas John is no exception. He’s funny! Even Piers likes him. I think it was a great choice to dress up in the garish American flag suit and take advantage of how weird and flashy the quarter-finals are. In the end he stood on a platform and juggled some pins, but I think he dropped a few. Aw, I still like him. Piers doesn’t like him anymore, though. I wish it had gone better for him. It’s an off night for everyone, I think.

When will it be enough for Piers? Does someone have to critically injure themselves for it to be good television these days? Steven Retchless, the male pole dancer, could turn things around. In the night’s second tribute to Lady Gaga, Steven Retchless seems to be everything Leonid the Magnificent wishes he could be. Now THIS is a Vegas-style show. He utilized the dancers well, and showed some variety. Piers disagreed, though, pressing his X halfway through. Sharon loved it, though.

Mona Lisa is determined to make it, with their one-way ticket to LA. Why would they sing “Bless the Broken Road,” though? Sister act Christina and Ali sang that last season and it didn’t go much better. Oh man, I want to like them, but I don’t know about this. I liked the orange paper lanterns in their set! The judges agreed that it was nice, but lacking in “wow factor.”

Before even seeing their act, Silhouettes is the favorite of the night. They’ve got mass appeal, literally. There’s 42 of them, and they have all age ranges. Plus they’re doing a tribute to the troops! Nick Cannon won’t show up with his poo shovel at the end of this. I don’t care for the heavy-handed use of “God Bless America,” but this act is a clear favorite for the finals. It’s just so cool, and delightful to watch.

So, this night was mostly a disappointment, looking back. There were so many acts I liked that I wanted to do better than they did. But hey, that’s the nature of America’s Got Talent.

(Image courtesy of NBC)

Carla Patton

Writer, BuddyTV

Originally from Seattle, Carla recently took a husband and moved to Austin, Texas, where she is finally using her television “problem” to her advantage. It’s sort of like Dexter, but boring and less murdering. Carla’s favorite shows include 30 RockThe Amazing RaceProject RunwayModern Family, anything with murder, and pretty much anything gross and weird (CSIThe BachelorToddlers & Tiaras, etc.). Favorite canceled shows include: Arrested DevelopmentVeronica Mars and Average Joe. In her spare time, Carla leads tours of downtown Austin on a Segway (don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it!), blogs about Netflix Instant, and visits elementary schools telling children they don’t need math to succeed (just kidding, stay in school, kids).