Yes, it was a sweet TV moment. But it turns out Keith Apicary is the alter ego of comedian Nathan Barnatt, who in 2012 developed a variety show with Adult Swim based on Keith character called Youth Large that featured future Saturday Night Live cast regular Kyle Mooney

America’s Got Talent returned Tuesday for its 16th season, which meant that Simon Cowell — who sat out much of Season 15 due to a serious back injury in a freak bike accident — was back on the panel full-time, sitting pretty and ready for the summer TV season in his white Bermuda shorts.

After Cowell’s co-stars Sofia Vergara, Heidi Klum, and Howie Mandell were finished critiquing Simon’s hairy legs — “I mean, I wouldn’t send them to a Mr. Legs contest or anything like that, or to the AGT of legs, but they’re fine,” shrugged Sofia — it was time for them to critique some actual talent. And that is when a guy who very well could’ve been a Mr. Legs contender, crazy-limbed freestyle dancer Keith Apicary, hit the stage.

“I guess you could call it dancing. ‘Bodily maneuvers’ is what I call it. It’s kind of a sequence of rhythmic spasms,” mused Keith, a 35-year-old YouTube gamer and self-described “weirdo” who lives at home with his mom, as he explained his bizarre shtick to AGT host Terry Crews. Keith revealed that as a misfit kid growing up in Rhode Island, “I got picked on a lot, but playing video games and dancing was an escape. … I love video game music so much, I couldn’t not move to it.”

And the judges couldn’t not be moved, or at least highly amused, when Keith, rocking a pair of light-wash dad jeans and ‘70s aviator spectacles, starting busting his signature spastic moves — which included the worm, breakdancing windmills, and a categorization-defying array of “bodily maneuvers” — to French techno-pop act’s digital bop “Cutie Cutie.” Even when Keith seemingly suffered a post-windmill dizzy spell and shockingly tumbled off the stage with a dramatic thud, that turned out to all be part of his wacky but fascinating act.

Judge Sofia Vergara reacts to Keith Apicary’s fall on the Season 16 premiere of ‘America’s Got Talent.’ (Photos: NBC)

“Keith, I’ve got to be honest with you. Based on our little talk before [the dancing started], I thought, ‘This is going to be just awful.’ And then I just loved second of it! I thought you were amazing. I’m not a dance expert, but I’d rather watch you than the ballet,” said Simon. All four judges then said yes to Keith, who teared up and gushed, “I just wanted to say that I feel really good right now.” Aw.


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