I enjoyed the 2005 BET Awards. It was fun, entertaining, and full of intentional (and unintentional) surprises.
Here are my thoughts on this year's show:
-BET pulled an MTV Video Music Awards-like opening stunt by somehow reuniting The Fugees on national TV for the first time in years. Unfortunately, the performance wasn't as good as it could've been. It was nice to see the three of them together again. Frankly, I was happy to see that Pras hadn't disappeared off the face of the Earth. Lauryn Hill looked a little off during the performance and didn't sound all that good. However, I was amazed that she was able to perform for the 10+ minutes that she did without freaking out as she did in recent performances. Just when you think things might be okay for her, she backs out of the show's closing performance, one that was hyped by the announcer a few times as one "you will not forget." I guess that's true...we won't forget it because there was nothing to forget.
-I enjoyed Will & Jada as hosts. I liked how both of them weren't shy about poking fun at themselves. They looked they enjoyed hosting and they always looked comfortable. Their entrance, an homage to the classic Eddie Murphy comedy Coming To America, was great, right down to them walking on money instead of rose petals. I also liked their reunions with castmates from their past (Jada with the ladies of the film Set It Off, Will with most of the cast of The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air). All in all, they did a very nice job. I bet Will will be receiving some calls to host another awards show (the Oscars, perhaps?) in the future.
-The moment of the night clearly belonged to Terrence Howard. The look on his face as Beyoncé did a lapdance for him during Destiny's Child's performance of "Cater 2 U" was great. I could imagine his thoughts: "Oh my God! I'm the luckiest man in America!"
-Even though Missy lip-synched her performance of "Lose Control," it was an incredibly high-energy performance. I want that juke remix of "Lose Control" on my computer right now.
-The Game put in a pretty nice mostly solo performance. There were no disses of 50 Cent or G-Unit to be found, no random shouts of "G-U-Not!" or anything like that. The violins were a nice touch as was Mary J. Blige appearing to sing part of her "Hate It Or Love It" remix.