I’m not sure what I think about this show on NBC, America’s Got Talent. It’s in its fourth season, gets huge ratings, but seems to destroy (or at least greatly damper) the dreams of many talented people while often moving forward individuals/groups who are more of a novelty, not necessarily talented. So, should the name really include the word “talent” or should it be America’s Got Novelty? Don’t get me wrong, I understand the premise of the show and I realize the judges are looking for something that’s going to “make it” in Vegas…not Peoria. But I question the credentials of the judges. Just because you’re a “celebrity” (dubious one at that), does that qualify you to have the expertise to judge talent? I think the fact that they’ve moved forward with “talent” like the “Rapping Granny” and “Skateboarding Dog” demonstrates they don’t really have much ability in the area. Media critics have said the show “focuses on the goofy and unrestrained.” Any weekly viewer would have to agree. So, is it really a “talent” show?
I’ve watched several magicians appear on the show over the seasons (mostly on YouTube after the fact) – some of them good, most of them not. We were approached by the producers to appear on the show last season (and declined). The producers seem to have a great time demeaning the magicians and exploiting them. A quick YouTube search will reveal a few reels of bad magic auditions for AGT. However, with the exception of Nathan Burton’s appearances on the first season, they (judges and producers collectively) seem to be especially mean-spirited toward magicians. Which begs the question, why would any magician subject themselves to that? Being belittled on national television in front of millions of people doesn’t seem like good publicity to me. And when they do have good things to say about a magical performer, it typically leads to some sort of set up for later in the season where they comment “you started off strong and just fizzled out.” Or it leads to some sort of confrontation between the performer and the panel. I just can’t watch the show…and listen to the stupidity that comes out of everyone’s mouth.