Howie Mandel has revealed why he was absent from America's Got Talent this week after his sudden disappearance from the show left fans with questions.
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The AGT judge was confirmed as a no-show during Tuesday's audition episode after only Sofia Vergara, Heidi Klum, and Simon Cowell were on the panel. Host Terry Crews explained to the audience: "Howie is not here today, we wish him the best and hope he gets well soon and gets right back in that chair."
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Howie was also absent from the previous episode's panel as well, which aired on 12 July, with Terry revealing: "Howie Mandel is not feeling well today. He will not be joining us."
Understandably, fans of the comedian took to Twitter to question his absence, and when one asked him why he wasn't on the episode – which was taped months ago – Howie revealed that he had unfortunately contracted COVID-19 at that time.
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However, as the shows are pre-recorded months in advance, performances from several audition days are often compiled together to feature in one episode, so Howie actually made his return to AGT later in the same episode.
Howie is back to full health
Sharing an update on his health, Howie said: "I'm feeling 1000 per cent better, I'm so thrilled to be here." Fans also shared their glee over his return, with one posting on Twitter: "Great to have you back on AGT," to which Howie replied: "I know."
Another wrote: "I missed @AGT this week so I'm watching it now. This is just a @howiemandel appreciation tweet. Glad you're back!" Howie responded: "I'm glad to be back."
Meanwhile, it was revealed earlier this week that one of the show's more memorable contestants sadly passed away. Singer-songwriter Nolan Neal died on Monday at the age of 41.
Howie made his return in Tuesday's episode
His cousin, audio engineer, Dylan Seals, confirmed the news, stating that while the cause of death was uncertain, he had lost his "battle with substance abuse".
Nolan appeared on season 15 of AGT back in 2020, performing his original song Lost to the judges, and even received a standing ovation from Howie.
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