The VMA’s have come and gone and for the first time in a long time they might have actually been worth watching.
And I know what you’re thinking; “Mathan, you live in Vegas and you like music, what did you think of the VMA’s?”
In an effort to make the show (and the network) relevant, MTV decided that the VMAs would only air one, thus making it more of an “event”. Of course, MTV promptly broke that promise and immediately re-aired the awards show, but still, it managed to slightly recapture the magic of an era gone by.
I mean, except for that it’s the VMAs that we’re talking about here.
But still, the show did feel a lot more spontaneous than it has in the past decade. Having various performances in various spots throughout the Palms worked wonders in making the show actually worthy of attention.
Of course, Ms. Spears started the show off and has received a fair amount of criticism for it. I’m far from a Brittney fan, but I think most of it was unjust. Sure, she looked as though she were bored and clearly hadn’t practiced the routine enough, and yes, the song did suck. But attacking her physical fitness is practically endorsing eating disorders. She wasn’t “fat” or even particularly “unfit”. She wasn’t even out of shape, she looked like a typical American woman from the South who’s a single mother with two kids. In fact she almost certainly looked better than that.
Moving on, personally I thought Sarah Silverman’s routine was hilarious. Its problem was that it performed for a bunch in industry insiders who were afraid of laughing too loud lest (a) they get caught on camera and offend someone and (b) become her next target. But her material was funny and it sucked to see her struggle as she did.
Oh and for the record; Alicia Keys would catch one, early. That is if I thought I were her type. I mean, you have to consciously perform a cover of George Michael song and fuel speculation about your sexuality. I’m not saying she’s gay in a Tom Cruise sort of way, I think she’s more of gay in a Kevin Spacey/Jodie Foster sort of way. But I’d be totally down to share Alicia with her girl. In fact I’d probably pay good money to take part in that scenario.
Speaking of sexuality, is it because I’m straight that I don’t quite understand the allure of Chris Brown, or is it because I’m not a teenaged girl? Either way I found his extended performance to be better than normal. Did I mention that I had my TV on mute and was on the phone? That may have had something to do with it.
On the topic of mentioning things; when exactly was the last time that I expressed how much I loathe Justin Timberlake and wouldn’t shed a tear if he died after being violated by every “Lil” “Yung” and “Young” rapper that hails from the South who will have one popular
ringtone song and then fade from memory because they lack the substance of cotton candy?
But back to Chris Brown… Rhianna is really teetering close to being shaggable. On one hand, she’s way short (that’s a negative) on the other hand she’s got that nifty accent; y’know, just the type of thing that makes you not only pay attention when someone talks but hang on every word. But what really puts her over the top, aside from her status as a celebrity, is her asymmetrical hair cut. I give major props to a woman who can pull that off.
Speaking of Rhianna, I dug her impromptu (but obviously staged) jam with Fall Out Boy. It actually left me wanting more. In fact, most of the side performances left me wishing they’d spent more time in that given area. Seeing Cee-Lo rock out with the Foo Fighters on “Darling Nikki” was a nice treat. Oh wait, Kanye and T-Pain also did their thing, which was less than enjoyable.
Kanye of course brings up 50 Cent. I do think that it’s rather telling that 50 actually performed “In the Club” at one point during the program. I mean, doesn’t it speak to your career that you’re reduced to performing (a) a song from four years ago and (b) a song from your (major) debut album? I mean, really, 50… four years ago? I can remember when that song was popular; I was still living in Baltimore and having sex. And believe me when I tell you, that was forever ago.
Another sad thing is that Alicia Keys had to tart herself up. Don’t get me wrong; I loved seeing her hips and thighs, but c’mon girl, you’re an artist. Sell your music with your lyrics and, um… music, not by dressing trampy (by my standards for Alicia Keys).
And while Jamie Foxx should probably be admonished for failing to follow the footsteps of Cuba Gooding Jr. in terms of remaining inoffensive to white people after winning an Oscar, he gets props from me for not only starting the hilarious trend of black people with microphones providing hilarious social commentary about the double standards violence at “black” awards shows and violence at “white” awards show but for also getting one past the censor.
Speaking of going off the script; how hilarious was it to see Shia Lebouf bomb while revealing the title of the next Indiana Jones flick. Pure comedy. Did he not know what awards he was presenting at? Was he unaware that his audience not only had probably not seen one Indiana Jones flick, but would probably think IFC or Sundance if you questioned them about their favorite “Indy” movie.
Oh, and can someone explain to me why everyone accepts the notion that Dr. Dre is the greatest producer of all time, ever? Does no one remember Aftermath Presents? How about Eve and Rakim’s aborted Aftermath debuts? How about The Firm? It’s enough to make someone sign to Death Row. Clearly the most egregious example of America being duped resulted in our current situation in the Middle East. But accepting Dr. Dre as the bestest producer ever is a close second. Very close.
Finally, will someone please tell Timbaland to put a shirt on? I mean, really…