A man I have never seen before with an ugly blond mullet is out. Wait, is that the sword-swallower? Piers announces that they love him, love his act. They know he is the best in the world at what he does, but his act has nowhere to go. Once you've seen it you've seen it. And he is out. That same argument could be said about Wayne Newton, Siegfried & Roy, Celine Dion, and just about every other act on the Vegas Strip. And seriously, a four-year old who can't carry a tune goes through and a man who swallows flaming swords doesn't? Is he simply not telegenic enough? Is it the mullet? Is it mullet discrimination? Don't stand for it! Write your Congressman!
The sad plight of the sword-swallower begins our fateful descent into Axed Acts. In what may be the most shocking elimination, The Southern Belles, a seemingly much-loved clogging quartet, are cut. I am completely surprised by that. I thought the judges loved them. Backstage they hug Jerry and say they will, somehow, go on.
A mustachioed keyboard player who we have never seen before is also sent home. Sob Story No. 2, the woman who gave her kid up for adoption, is also out. Maybe she can find a new career on Myspace. Miss Buzzsaw must pack her electrical cords and sheet metal and head home. In yet another surprising turn, David, the singing nine-year old autistic kid, is also sent home. He gets the news with his mom by his side. His performance in Vegas was definitely better than the Most Precious Girl in the World's number, but he is not quite as precious and therefore has to go. The way this show loves a sob story, he would have stood a better a chance if he were more autistic. Like Rain Man, but with songs. Despite their ability to move their hands really really quickly while spinning in a circle, the brother and sister salsa dancers are also out. She tells Jerry that everything happens for a reason and they will just keep doing what they do. Which is moving their hands really really quickly whilst spinning.
Up next are the split decisions, where the judges just couldn't agree on whether an act should go to LA. Up first to hear their fate is Lil Country and Page 1ne, a break dancing duo who were an early Sob Story out of New Orleans. They remind us about Hurricane Katrina and how this show has given them a second chance at life. In the face of such sob story-ness, Hasselhoff breaks out the koans in order to let them down gently: It's not the end of your journey, it's the beginning of another one. Did you read that in a fortune cookie during lunch, Hoff? The men nod in understanding. They plan on moving forward. We will see them again.