Welcome to Saturday night, Shout readers. Tonight the Britain’s Got Talent tour bus takes us to Cardiff and London to see what goodies the general public have got for us!
62 year old singer Marlene is from Bournemouth. She brings gifts to appease the judges, and a bubbly attitude. Simon stuns her with an early buzz, followed closely by the other two. I didn’t even know she was crucifying Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell. Terrible singer. But funny.
Ryan O’Malley fails to impress us with his nerve-ridden rendition of some cliched tunes. The judges make sure to remove any lingering delusions he might have about singing for a living. Jamie Harding is a weird dude in a purple body stocking and smart jacket. It is oddness personified. Send in the men with the straightjackets.
Prepare to be freaked out by Pukka Productions, an amateur dramatics group dressed as fairies, gnomes and assorted freaks. The judges cunningly synchronise their buzzers. At least they’ve got talent.
The next performer, Alyn James, looks like he’s been doing the club circuit for decades. He sings a song of his own called Can’t Catch Every Train On Time. Slowly, painfully, the judges press their buzzers. The maudlin song is thoroughly depressing, but you’ve gotta give the guy credit for being brave enough to come up and sing his own song. Even if it is a terrible song…
16 year old student Josh Barry looks like a funky dude. And I mean that in a nice way. Ah, the opening notes from My Girl begin to play. Unless he does something radical here, he’s going to get blasted for being old-fashioned and irrelevant. At least if Connected from a couple of weeks ago is any indication. He’s a good singer, extremely confident to be singing on that stage. The crowd love him.
Amanda calls him “a showman”, Piers tells him “You’ve got the looks, you’ve got the charm, you’ve got the stage presence, you’ve got the girls going crazy”. Simon echoes Piers but tells Josh he should be in a band. All the judges weigh in with three yeses. A thrilled Josh sails through to the next round.
A belly-dancing duo, Mystika impress us with their sexy moves and stunning figures. Julia Makarova does an amazing acrobatic routine that left a few jaws wide open around the country. Dance crew Synergy Stunts do a fantastic routine called entertaining and genius by Piers and Amanda respectively.
Twist And Pulse
A nervous dance duo, Twist And Pulse don’t look very exciting on paper. Or even on screen. They’ve got a brilliant mix of comedy and street dance that even works in a bit of Cheeky Girls, one of Cowell’s less tan stellar moments. The duo get a standing ovation for their wildly inventive routine.
Piers raves about them, Amanda gets them to name their genre – they call it Streetomedy – and Cowell tells them “You are two people I’m gonna remember for all the right reasons.” Three yeses.
A bizarre mother and daughter act next Dead Fish Poets Society, sort of just as bad as the Shakespeare spanking act from a few weeks back. She’s got her daughter dressed in a fish costume while she witters poetry. This is beyond weird.
Wearing a home-made costume (did he say his Mum made it?) Mark James is an entertainments manager for a ferry company. He does the old Rene and Renatta song doing the old half-girl, half-guy costume. I groaned from the moment I realised what he was planning to do. Amanda Holden thinks he’s hilarious. But then she thought Big Top was a great idea for a show.
Though Piers praises the act, Simon seems resigned to the fact that he’s going to get through on the strength of Amanda and Piers’ votes. Bugger. This is the kind of guy talented acts get really pissed off about on this show.
Ice are a street dance group from south central Rotherham. Dec notices a nice little detail – fake ice cubes on the tops of the group’s canes. The routine starts out a little shaky for me, but improves toward the end. Especially after they start with the Black Eyed Peas song.
Piers loves their cane work, and Amanda compliments their fantastic slick choreography. Simon complains about them being choreographed from outside the group and tells them it has a dance school vibe to it. He insults the choreographer “You’re not exactly Jenny from the Bronx, are you?” Ouch. Though to be fair, he admits he’s being rude. They still walk away with three yeses – but do you get a distinct impression that Simon’s at war with mothers and choreographers this year?
Paul Burling is a comedy impressionist. In case you didn’t guess from his costume, he’s clearly got a Harry Hill impersonation lined up. He bombards us with sob stories: I want my children to see what I do, I’m whatever years old, it’s my last shot at fame. Walking cliche. After he gets the Harry Hill skit out of the way, he gives us a whistlestop tour of cartoons from the 80’s. Seriously – not a Spongebob reference, nothing modern at all.
Now, don’t listen to me pouring cold water over Paul’s act, the audience lapped it up. The judges raved and heaped praise on him, including Amanda’s “we have found you” comment which made me cringe. That’s three yeses from the judges. But a no thanks from me. Sorry Paul – a handful of impressions from old cartoons doesn’t make a wonderfully relevant act.