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With his British accent and his taste for blunt criticism, Piers Morgan is often called the Simon Cowell of NBC's America's Got Talent (Tuesday and Wednesday, 9 p.m. ET). Like his American Idol counterpart, he roils plenty of contestants' tempers—like last week's fire-setting juggler, Nick Pike. "I thought it was a bit of a shambles, the whole thing," Morgan, 45, said after Pike's performance. Next time we saw Pike, he was spouting profanities at the camera. Cowell has certainly inspired the same reactions over on Fox.
But Cowell occasionally turns on the charm. Morgan? He's always in curmudgeon mode. And sometimes his comments feel needlessly cruel. When host Nick Cannon asked how Morgan's co-judge Howie Mandel did on his first live show, Morgan retorted, "I never thought I'd miss David Hasselhoff." Mandel actually looked hurt. Morgan's other claim to fame—that he won NBC's Celebrity Apprentice in 2008—doesn't help his image, either. Shrewd and ruthless are great business qualities, but not so appealing in a TV personality.
So maybe it is true what they say? Nice guys finish last. And curmudgeons get to replace Larry King?
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