— American Inventor kicked off its second season tonight, with auditions split between Los Angeles and San Francisco. In the initial round, each inventor needs three votes to move on that city's finals. From there, the judges will choose a city winner, and that person will receive $50,000 to go further with their invention. Tonight, though, we only see the initial auditions.
American Inventor boasts a new batch of judges this season whose combined worth is over $1 billion. They are George Foreman, Pat Croce (former Philadelphia 76ers owner), Peter Jones (British mogul), and Sarah Blakely (underwear/fashion designer). Here's a recap of the notable inventors from tonight's show.
Jamshid Hatami, 45
The man quit his job to be an inventor. He's a lot of talk and comes in hiding the invention under his sweatshirt. He's spent 4 years and 15 grand on it. Or so he says. He's made a headset. It's a strap from a bunch of places that connects to your hat, in order to keep you straight. Or something. It's all very confusing.
Kim Douglas, 42
Her invention is the Arf Bag. It's a barf bag for dogs while riding in the car. It's like a muzzle connected to a butterfly net. Kim is denied.
Richard Dessert Sr. and Jr.
They've made The Fire Escape Suit. It's an aluminum foil suit that you put on before running out of a burning building. Bizarre. They get denied.
Betty Solomon, 49
She first came up with her idea thirteen years ago. She has made the "autobib". She has a whole presentation ready and it's a bit like an infomercial. It's a big napkin that you place on your chest. The judges actually like it, and she is the first LA finalist of night.
Gary Severen, 56
He's invented the "Pot Sniffer". It's a fan/deodorizer that you put on the side of the toilet. Foreman likes it, the others don't. Gary isn't happy about it.
We get a long montage of George Foreman saying yes to everything. The man never says no.
Rayfil Wong, 29
Rayfil is unemployed, but energetic. Really energetic. He's created a device that you blow in and will deny you access to your keys if you're drunk. It already exists, so he gets a no.
Anthony Moebest, TEN YEARS OLD
Yep, it's a little kid. He's created a the "Diaper Wipe", which is a little sticky bag full of handi-wipes that you put on the front of the diaper. Kind of a good idea, I thought. The judges say no, but they're nice about it.
Steven Cousineau, 42, crazy person
Wearing sunglasses and a cowboy hat, Steve is one cocky dude, ranting and raving everywhere. He's made the "A-Cycle". It's extra wheels that go onto a bicycle. It's like bike hubcaps. This guy's a nutjob, and he takes forever to leave after he's told to leave. And he won't go. Croce has to eventually walk him out.
Bridgette Camarena, 37
Bridgette spent one year and 11 grand on her invention, which is a picture that you put on the toilet that will change colors when you pee on it. Yeah, it's stupid.
Richard Koppell, 62
"Little Therapy Buddy". This guy was here last season. It's a stuffed animal that, when you touch it, it says "everything is going to be all right." It is very, very creepy. However, he gives an impassioned plea, and George, Sarah, and Pat say yes, and he heads through to the LA finals. Richard, by the way, has a life partner with a matching mustache.
Greg Chavez, 43, firefighter, father of 6
He has invented "The Guardian Angel" and is meant to save children's lives. It's a way to stop Christmas trees from going up in flames. He tells a sad story about seeing children die because of it. It's a gift attached to a hose that travels up the tree and connects to an angel that, at 150 degrees or so, triggers a couple gallons of water to fall and distinguish the fire. He gets three yeses and he'll be going to the San Fran finals.
-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer