‘America’s Got Talent’ 5th Judge: Blind, Autistic Singer Kodi Lee Earns Emotional Standing Ovation

For the first time in “America’s Got Talent” semi-finals history, the panel welcomed a guest judge in “Will & Grace” star Sean Hayes, to help them winnow eleven acts down to five.

Unfortunately, he didn’t do much and took time away from the regular panel. Either Simon isn’t thrilled with the new additions this season or he’s just trying things out. Either way, it didn’t really work and we don’t expect to see this again next season

As for the talent, there was incredible disappointment throughout the night. Some of the strongest acts from earlier rounds really seemed to let the pressure of the semi-finals just destroy their confidence.

Don’t get us wrong, there were bona fide highlights as well, but some shockingly bad performances from some great acts. It did help us pick a Top 5 from what looked initially like a very strong lineup of talent. Maybe that’s why so many blew it.

Even more unfortunate, many of the acts that bombed were of the “variety” variety, which could make for a very boringly homogenous finale.

Who do I think I am? you ask. Well, I spent nearly a decade of my life sweating and bleeding to the music as a dancer. From a young boy learning a shuffle-ball-change to performing with the St. Louis Ballet Company, I experienced the ups and downs of one of the most difficult physically demanding sports on the planet. During this time, I was also a member of the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra, as well as a gymnast, writer and cartoonist. I had a lot more energy in my younger years. And I’ve spent the last seventeen years analyzing and critiquing reality competition shows for various media publications. I’ve got this.

Fair warning, since I’m safe at home, I’m probably going to be a little harsher than my colleagues Howie MandelGabrielle UnionJulianne Hough and Simon Cowell. But I might be nicer, too. Maybe.

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