Howard Stern makes a good judge on ‘America’s Got Talent’
BY LORI RACKL TV Criticfirstname.lastname@example.org May 14, 2012 9:35PM
Howard Stern (left) is the new guy on the “America’s Got Talent” judge’s table alongside Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel. Nick Cannon (standing) hosts.
Updated: June 16, 2012 8:17AM
The self-described “King of All Media” lived up to his lofty title on the season seven premiere of “America’s Got Talent.”
Howard Stern proved to be a natural as the newest judge on NBC’s talent competition, adding some needed humor and charisma to the seat vacated by Piers Morgan.
The notorious shock jock and Sirius XM Radio host defied the Parents Television Council and behaved himself on the family-friendly program — without coming across as a neutered pushover. He managed to be both compassionate and critical, as well as a good arbiter of acts that deserve a shot at the $1 million prize and a gig in Vegas. (The singing Bird Lady was not one of them, despite judge Howie Mandel’s arguments to the contrary.)
Stern has been honing his quick wit for more than 35 years, and it served him well on the small screen. When he gently asked a terrible singer if his parents had suggested a different career, the man said his parents were dead.
“They died of embarrassment?” Stern responded in just the right tone that made the joke funny, not mean.
The nastiest comment wasn’t delivered by Stern. It was directed at him, after Stern told a guitarist that his act was too weird even for his radio show.
“That might hurt my feelings if I respected your opinion,” the guy shot back.
The unflappable Stern may have a face for radio, but he seemed every bit as comfortable as veteran co-judges Sharon Osbourne (a Brit) and Mandel (a Canadian). As Stern pointed out, it’s nice to have at least one American on the panel to decide whether our country has talent.