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The real reason Howie Mandel missed the second half of America’s Got Talent

Howie Mandel on America's Got Talent
Howie Mandel on America’s Got Talent. Pic credit: NBC

America’s Got Talent lasts two hours each Tuesday night, but this week’s show had one startling change halfway through the show.

After the first hour of acts finished, the show came back and announced that Howie Mandel was not there to judge.

Fans might have been startled when the popular judge was missing in action, but there was a good explanation for his absence.

Where was Howie Mandel on America’s Got Talent?

Howie Mandel stayed away from some of the auditions on America’s Got Talent because he got sick.

All the auditions and the first rounds were pre-recorded and are not live. This means that Howie’s absence will only be felt during the auditions where he was sick.

Howie’s absence began immediately following the audition of contortionist Oleksandr Yenivatov. It might have seemed strange that he would immediately leave.

However, since the episodes are pre-recorded, the auditions are shown out of order to make it more entertaining and balance out the shows. The audition with Oleksandr and the ones that followed occurred on different days in the audition process.

This is especially obvious to people who watch closely and see that the judges are in different outfits during different acts – especially apparent in the attire of Sofia Vergara and Heidi Klum.

Howie took to Twitter to poke fun at him suddenly disappearing. He wrote, “Sorry everyone, can you cover for me tonight?”

Howie Mandel Twitter 1
Pic credit: @howiemandel/Twitter

Someone then asked if Howie was washing his hands and asked if that is why he missed, which saw Howie respond with “how did you know.”

Howie Mandel Twitter 2
Pic credit: @howiemandel/Twitter

This was a joke based on Howie coming public with his struggles with OCD.

“Touch the doorknob ten times before you turn it to the left otherwise somebody’s gonna die,” Howie said. “[OCD] will inhibit every aspect of your life.” 

He admitted that he has been late to several events because he has an obsessive hand-washing routine.

How did America’s Got Talent deal with Howie Mandel’s absence?

Terry Crew explained how Howie’s absence would affect the show since there was no replacement for him.

“Howie Mandel is not feeling well today, so he will not be joining us,” Terry told the audience in the studio and at home. “Since Howie is not here, two ‘yeses’ will let the Act advance, and three Red Buzzers mean that your Act is over.”

The rest of the auditions shown on Tuesday night only had Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, and Sofia Vergara as the lone voters.

They even allowed the father of one of the contestants – Harper – to sit in Howie’s place to watch his daughter sing what turned out to be a death metal song.

America’s Got Talent airs on Tuesday nights at 8/7c on NBC.

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