Wednesday, September 3, 2014

NBC's "America's Got Talent": the best act from the second semifinal night

This was the best act from last night's semifinals on "America's Got Talent":

In case you haven't been watching, it's magician Mat Franco.

I like to try to figure out how the magic tricks are done, and with the benefit of TiVo, I'm able to rewind, freeze frame, and watch in slow motion. I think I've figured out conceptually what Mat Franco did (i.e., when he swapped out Mel B's phone with a fake one, and when he planted hers in the seat), but even after re-watching the entire act, pausing, going in slow motion, and so on, I still can't see any sign of when he actually did the swaps.

The other magician on the night, bar magician Smoothini, was quite good too, but with the aid of TiVo, I was able to spot his tricks. By saying that, I don't mean to disparage his performance at all; he was, as his name suggests, smooth, and in real time, the tricks looked great. But I'm not left with the same "how in the world did he do that?!?" feeling that I had with Franco.

Now, some results SPOILERS....

Mat Franco moved on, while Smoothini found himself somewhere between 5th and 7th, in the dreaded jeopardy zone. One of the three acts in that zone was saved by the live (East Coast/Central Time Zone) audience - Blue Journey, the performance dancers. The judges chose the other act in jeopardy, which was the strength acrobat Christian Stoiynev (and his dog, Scooby).

It's too bad. Smoothini is very good at what he does, but I think he suffered from going the same week that Mat Franco did.

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