There were a lot of locals in the world of reality TV this week!
"America's Got Talent" included an audition from an East Bay music teacher named Michael Strelo-Smith. He had an OK voice, but he was kind of boring. He swears he can sing anything and everything, but so far we are unimpressed.
"Last Comic Standing" continued its trend of finding comedians who have been around for years, and presenting them as new found talent. Local comics that made it through the first round included Arj Barker, and Sabrina Matthews, two comedians we remember fondly from the Alex Bennett show back in the 90s.
"American Inventor"'s San Francisco finalists included Milton Butler, who has 24 kids and invented some kind of lawn mower; a hippie named Arbor from Santa Cruz who invented a stick; Erica Fand and Shelley Kohan who invented air fresheners that look like fake flowers; and Tammy Harris, who invented a motorized cake icer. The San Francisco winner was Greg Chavez (even though he's not really from San Francisco) who invented a Christmas tree topper called the Guardian Angel that can (supposedly) put out Christmas tree fires. It's a neat idea, but there was no proof that it actually worked. We shall see. But the best San Francisco contestant had to be Rayfil Wong and his energetic "sober key" presentation. (See the YouTube clip above.)
And last, and certainly least, "Pirate Master." This show continues to barely hold our interest long enough to keep track of local contestant Nessa's progress. Maybe we'd like it if they added a little more time-period authenticity, like PBS's "Frontier House" or "Regency House Party." Watching a bunch of "pirates" running around in tennis shoes and sports bras takes some of the fun out of it. Or maybe it's just because the show sucks. Whatever the case may be, Nessa did nothing of note, and was not cast adrift. The most amusing thing was when they voted in a new captain, he suddenly developed an English accent. We'll see if that lasts, or if it is ridiculed out of him next week.