Monday, August 31, 2015

The VMAs happened, and we'd be better off if we try and pretend it didn't

The VMAs - the bit on the calendar when everyone remembers MTV still broadcast - happened yesterday, in a series of events in which pop music finally broke.

Miley Cyrus was on hosting duties, and couldn't decide what to wear. So in the end she wore everything:

Seven outfits. Seven outfits, and not one of them worked. The one with the giant Smarties on, clearly, was sold to her by a designer trying to keep a straight face while insisting that he had GaGa on the other line putting in a bid for it. But that was just the worst of a very, very bad bunch.

Somewhere this morning Billy Ray Cyrus is saying "when I said there's no way you're going on stage dressed like that", I wasn't being an overprotective father; I was talking on behalf of Vogue."

It's not just Miley's dresses which had most of America thinking it was time for an intervention, though. She's now got dreads.

Of course, there's no reason why Miley Cyrus can't have dreads - even ones that are so obviously fake that they look like they've recently been used to stop trawlers drifting off to sea - but it came across as a somewhat insensitive thing to do after her recent dis on Nicki:

It shows something of a deaf ear, or poor advice, to spend a chunk of the week telling a black woman she doesn't know how to campaign on behalf of under-represented black women, only to turn up with a head full of shoddy cultural appropriation. It's fair to say it didn't go down well.

And that wasn't the end of the racial insensitivity for the night:

In case you're not sure that having someone introduce the hip hop awards dressed as a cop making jokes about "injustice" is that much of a dick move, even the Daily Mail noticed.

Kanye was also there. He made reference to that time he was on before and gatecrashed Taylor Swift picking up an award:
He spoke of the aftermath of interrupting Swift lo those many years ago. He bit the hand that was feeding him by saying, "You know how many times MTV ran that footage again, 'cause it got them more ratings?"
It must have been galling that when you tried to make a gallant gesture in order to put the focus firmly on yourself, only for the awards show you're at to make hay from it, eh.

West also used the occasion to announce his plans for the next decade:
"And yes, as you probably could have guessed by this moment, I have decided, in 2020, to run for president."
Cyrus's reaction to this - which came after a break, which means not only did she have time to think of a response, but other people could have, too, was:
“Trump, you had my vote. But now? Kanye West for president!”
Even in jest, to tell Donald Trump you were going to vote for him is deadly. Perhaps there was some metajoke being made about how, if you're going to vote for some guy off a reality TV show, it doesn't matter which one you go for, but somehow, I doubt it.

In happier news, Nicki and Taylor made up their beef. But Nicki wasn't done with Miley:
Minaj thanked her pastor while taking the award for Anaconda, then turned to Cyrus, who was on a nearby stage. “And now back to this bitch that had a lot to say about me the other day in the press – Miley, what’s good?” said Minaj.
Miley was forced to go off script for a moment. Like a pro, she blamed the press:
Cyrus responded to the confrontation, with a brief comment about interview responses being twisted from their intended message. “We’re all in the industry, we all do interviews, and we all know how they manipulate shit,” Cyrus said, before continuing with her script for the night.
Or maybe she didn't, as obviously that was on The Guardian website and you know how the press manipulate shit.

You do wonder, though, why she didn't contact Minaj directly and explain what she really meant when the interview came out, don't you?

In case you've forgotten, there were awards being given out as well, and here's the closest thing to winners in full:
Best Rock Video: Fall Out Boy, "Uma Thurman"

Best Pop Video: Taylor Swift, "Blank Space"

Best Male Video: Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars, "Uptown Funk"

Best Hip-Hop Video: Nicki Minaj, "Anaconda"

Best Female Video: Taylor Swift, "Blank Space"

Best Video With a Social Message: Big Sean featuring Kanye West & John Legend, "One Man Can Change the World"

Song of the Summer: 5 Seconds of Summer, "She's Kinda Hot"

Best Collaboration: Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar, "Bad Blood"

Best Direction: Kendrick Lamar, "Alright" (Colin Tilley & the Little Homies)

Best Choreography: OK Go, "I Won’t Let You Down" (OK Go, air:man and Mori Harano)

Best Cinematography: Flying Lotus feat. Kendrick Lamar, "Never Catch Me" (Larkin Sieple)

Best Art Direction: Snoop Dogg, "So Many Pros" (François Rousselet, Jason Fijal)

Best Editing: Beyoncé, "7/11" (Beyoncé, Ed Burke, Jonathan Wing)

Best Visual Effects: Skrillex and Diplo feat. Justin Bieber, "Where Are U Now" (Brewer, Gloria FX, and Max Chyzhevskyy)

Artist to Watch: Fetty Wap

Video of the Year: Taylor Swift featuring Kendrick Lamar, "Bad Blood"