‘America’s Got Talent’ review: Jon Dorenbos (Ne-Yo’s golden buzzer), Linkin’ Bridge, more in Judge Cuts

AGT -Tonight, “America’s Got Talent” made it into the Judge Cuts portion of the competition, which raised the stakes but then also the talent. Twenty acts hit the stage tonight, and only seven of them were going to be moving on. This is one of our new favorite parts of the competition, and a fantastic addition brought on by the guest judge and that extra golden buzzer. Ne-Yo’s here, and one of those seven acts won’t have to wait until the end of the night to learn their fate!

Check back throughout the show for our take on the acts. We’ll have the results of tonight in a separate article at the very end of the show.

Hara – Sure, there are many iterations of the classic “disappear and reappear somewhere else” magic act, but how he did it was really fun with him scaring the judges. With magic, you just want to do something that makes you stand out, especially since there are only so many trick constructions out there. A great start to the show.

Philippe and Marie-Lee – Great acrobatic ability and powerful choreography. These two felt the love from the crowd, and in terms of a fit, there are not many other acts out there quite like them. They didn’t really get a lot of screen time, so maybe you worry about that.

Miniotics and Jumpers in Command – Consider this the “acts not getting through” montage.

Christopher and his puppets – This is still completely absurd, but it’s fun. At least he did a couple of new things with the puppets that we did not have in the first audition.

Brennley Brown – We barely saw her sing. That doesn’t bode well.

Lori Mae Hernandez – Who knew that this would be the second straight comedian on the show to use Disney humor? Despite being just a teenager, she has a great command of the stage and knows how to play into her personality. She almost reminds us of that new Vanessa Bayer news-reader character on “Saturday Night Live,” especially when doing that Caitlyn Jenner humor.

John Ferraro and Jon Call – The “we wreck stuff but won’t move on” montage.

Duo Guerrero – Really scary, but also really thrilling. This is the sort of act we could continue to watch every day, at least when it comes to seeing so many different twists on the high-wire act.

Jon Dorenbos – We knew that he was a good magician, but holy hell, we had no idea that he had such a powerful story. His drawing skill may need a little work still (we didn’t really know what that box was for a second), but the end result was really good and he’s a very creative, cool guy. A super-worthy golden buzzer from Ne-Yo! We didn’t see that coming.

The Passing Zone – Wonderful. We know that they have been on the show before, but we are so happy they are back based on this. There was comedy, skill, and danger rolled into one. They’re consummate professionals, perfect at what they do, and we would be very happy to see them win.

Singer montage – Once again, there’s probably a reason we barely saw them.

Ronee Martin – Given so many golden buzzer acts from the first round were singers, we’re not altogether shocked that they’re not taking center stage in this round. Yet, Ronee was very good here, much better than her audition, even.

Cory Kaheney – Poor Cory was mostly just here for a Simon – Mel B moment.

Axel Perez – These balancing acts are super scary and hard to pull off, so kudos to Axel. The one thing that he does need to work on is improving his presence and having fun on stage. You want people to be nervous, but they also want to see you be confident!

Rory Freeman – The man has passion. Unfortunately, he didn’t really have any air time at all.

Linkin’ Bridge – We figured that they were a golden buzzer candidate before tonight, and we gotta be honest: We wouldn’t have been mad if they got it for this. One of those vocal groups that actually does nail the harmonies and doesn’t feel too gimmicky in the process.

Results Head over here to see them for the night.

If you missed it, head over here to get an exclusive interview from earlier today with contestant Adam Grabowski! Also, sign up over here to get some other TV news on all we cover via our CarterMatt Newsletter. (Photo: NBC.)

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