With cocktails in hand, my friends and I gathered around the television to witness the return of Britney Spears. After weeks of hype and rumors, the evening had finally arrived. Ms Spears was finally returning to MTV’s Video Music Awards in Las Vegas to reclaim her pop star glory. As we all know by now that didn’t happen.
What transpired instead was a bizarre, disconnected performance by a confused young lady who seemed to wake up and realize the world that once embraced her had changed and not for the better. A jillion potshots have already been published around the world this morning about Brit’s performance and you could practically hear the clicking of bloggers’ keyboards as she lip synched her way through her new single “Gimme More”. So any witty “lost stripper comments” by yours truly are already null and void by this point. The Britney debacle was the tip of the iceberg for a show that has been eaten alive by the reality-driven ADD culture that it created.
The show’s format was so jam-packed with multiple cameras, flashing screens, and frenetic pacing, it was hard to even focus on the business at hand. Aside from a few funny zingers, even the reliably funny Sarah Silverman seemed lost and worn out, leaving an uncharismatic Alicia Keys to do the heavy lifting of “getting the party started.”
Some moron at MTV thought it would be a great idea to have several performances in hotel suites at the Palms instead of confining the action to the main stage. It turned out to be a bigger blunder than the crime Britney had previously committed. Instead of full-blown showstoppers, viewers got brief tidbits of Kanye West, Fall Out Boy, and the Foo Fighters. Meanwhile the main stage was left to hand out pointless awards from a channel that rarely even shows videos anymore. Sounds confusing? Well, it was and the head-scratchers didn’t stop there.
Like what was wrong with Jamie Foxx? His rambunctious, frat boy-like rambling clearly rattled former Alias badass Jennifer Garner. I’m not saying he was drunk but he definitely had a DeVito-esque quality about him that can usually be attributed to hanging out with friends like Jack, Jim, or Jose.
And what was with all of the non-stop Timbaland butt-kissing? Okay, fine, he was the show’s musical maestro. And fine, his protégées like Justin Timberlake and Nelly Furtado (who looked like Jessica Lange after an all-nighter) were up for awards. But jeeze, did he have to get up on stage every three minutes? It was like watching a musical dictatorship unfold before your eyes. Clearly, if you hate what’s being played on pop radio today this man is most likely responsible. My friends and I found ourselves reminiscing about the good old days when Timbaland would produce genius tracks for Missy Elliot and stayed in the background.
Also, why wasn’t Fergie there? You know your awards show is in trouble when a woman who will basically show up at an opening of a KFC to sing “Fergalicious” is too busy to swing by and pick up her Female Artist of the Year award. Maybe my friends and I should have taken a page from her book and blown it off as well.
Other questions, like why was rapper Lil Mama wearing a Strawberry Shortcake costume, or what was up with the computer voice that announced the nominees, or who the hell is Megan Fox, could drive a person crazy.
The main question we asked ourselves was “Why are we watching this?”
Once upon a time, the VMAs were the place to tune in and watch knockout performances by your favorite pop stars. Today, it’s closer to the networks' spring break coverage. Stuffing the show with fast editing and pretty faces was the solution for a channel that lost its connection with popular music. MTV wrongly assumed that viewers were like them and no longer cared about music and really just wanted to watch the popular kids party and congratulate each other. Like the worst buffets in Las Vegas, the 2007 VMAs had a lot of options, but none of them were very appetizing.Powered by Sidelines