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Britain's Got Talent Vs America's Got Talent

VO: Richard Bush WRITTEN BY: Marc Turner
Are you ready to be entertained? Welcome to WatchMojo UK, and for today’s instalment of “Versus”, we have America and Britain going head-to-head to find out which country gives us the best version of the “Got Talent” franchise. Special thanks to our user ashjbow for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest

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Britain’s Got Talent Vs. America’s Got Talent

Are you ready to be entertained? Welcome to WatchMojo UK, and for today’s instalment of “Versus”, we have America and Britain going head-to-head to find out which country gives us the best version of the “Got Talent” franchise.

Round 1: Memorable Auditions

From opera singers to shadow dancers, both shows have brought us no shortage of unforgettable performers.

In the UK, we’ve had Attraction, Ashleigh and Pudsey, Marc Spelmann, and who could forget that moment when Susan Boyle started singing and left the judges picking their jaws up off the floor.

But for every memorable performance the Brits have given us, the Americans have one of their own, with acts including Kenichi Ebina and Heavenly Joy. And if we had to pick a single audition that will remain etched in our minds forever, it would be this remarkable solo from 6-year-old Aaralyn.

Sorry Britain, America gets our vote here – otherwise Aaralyn might start screaming at us!

Winner: “America’s Got Talent”

Round 2: The Hosts

Ant and Dec have fronted “Britain’s Got Talent” since it launched in 2007 – barring Ant’s brief absence in 2018 following a drink-driving offence. And, even then, Dec valiantly manned the fort all on his own. The Geordie double act are BGT through and through, with viewers as much tuning in for their antics as they are for the actual acts.

The US, by contrast, has had five hosts since its launch, in 2006. Jerry Springer and Tyra Banks each lasted only two seasons, whilst its longest-serving anchor, Nick Cannon, stepped down reportedly after making a racial joke about NBC. As for AGT’s first host, Regis Philbin, he doesn’t even remember presenting the show himself!

No one can match the wit and warmth of Britain’s most popular presenting duo, so Blighty bags this one.

Winner: “Britain’s Got Talent”

Round 3: The Controversies

Neither the American nor the British versions of the show are immune to scandal – and we’re not just talking about vote-fixing allegations, either.

In the US, Tyra Banks was once got the show sued for “physically manipulating” and “verbally abusing” a contestant, while in 2018, finalist Courtney Hadwin became a divisive figure when the public learned she had taken part in reality shows abroad.

By now, though, British viewers are probably thinking: “Is that all?” Because as well as complaints about foreign contestants, “Britain’s Got Talent” has suffered from controversies regarding judges’ outfits, canine stunt doubles, and even the infamous egg-throwing protest aimed at Simon Cowell in 2013.

It’s a tough one to call, but the British version just shades it in terms of behind-the-scenes drama.

Winner: “Britain’s Got Talent”

Round 4: The Judges

Both the UK and US shows have featured Simon Cowell, Piers Morgan and David Hasselhoff as judges, but that is where the similarities end.

In an effort to keep the programme “fresh”, “America’s Got Talent” often changes its panel. But at times it can feel like a game of musical chairs, and the personnel shifts suggest that the show might be struggling to find the right blend of personalities.

In the UK, Simon Cowell and Amanda Holden have been ever-present since the start, with their close connection causing a raised eyebrow or two in the past. Add in David Walliams and Alesha Dixon, and you have the perfect mix of chemistry and diversity of opinion.

Winner: “Britain’s Got Talent”

Round 5: The Success Stories

In both the UK and US, it hasn’t always been the competition’s winners who have gone on to have the greatest success.

Among former US contestants with the highest net worth, Jackie Evancho, Lindsey Stirling, and The Texas Tenors all missed out on first place. The most successful American competitor of all, though, is arguably entertainer Terry Fator, who in 2008 won a $100 million contract at a Las Vegas resort. Not bad.

Success stories from the UK include Diversity, Paul Potts, and Ashleigh and Pudsey, with Pudsey even getting his own film. But the most famous graduate of BGT is undoubtedly Susan Boyle. The unassuming Scottish singer has sold more than 25 million albums worldwide, and is a household name on both sides of the Atlantic.

She ‘dreamed a dream’, and she takes this round for Britain!

Winner: “Britain’s Got Talent”

With a score of four to one, “Britain’s Got Talent” is today’s winner.

Both versions of the show deliver memorable moments and virtuoso performances across a broad range of disciplines – with the US just edging it for auditions that live long in the memory.

But Britain’s presenters have the advantage in both charisma and continuity, plus it’s the British show that has uncovered the most successful act in Susan Boyle. And isn’t that what talent shows are all about?

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