I know I’m a little late to the party as most 2015 MTV VMA reviews are already out there, but as the title says…I had already stayed up late to watch the whole thing, couldn’t stay up much later and get up to function at my real life job. I’m going to break out my review into the following categories: Miley, Miley vs Nicki, Performances, Kanye & Taylor, and Missing Elements. Feel free to skip to whatever part you are most interested in reading about!
To start, I wanted to talk about her outfit changes as fashion, but I can’t because her ensembles were nothing more than costumes. I wasn’t expecting Miley to strut around the stage in Elie Saab or Oscar de la Renta ballgowns, but she should/could have brought the fashion, even if she wanted to rock a pasty look – I mean, one of her look’s was a subpar knock-off of Lil’ Kim’s ’99 VMA look. All I’m saying is that she could have maybe split the “Miley”-costumes (like the square rainbow) and incorporated some kind of style into her clothing changes throughout the night. My favorite look of hers was the opening jumpsuit she wore, and that’s saying a lot because I’m almost over sequins.
As a host, she was decent. She wasn’t the worst host in the history of award shows, but she was no Ellen at the 2014 Oscar’s either (who she called out in her selfie skit). Some of her jokes were funny like Britney being her emergency contact and calling out Justin Bieber’s swoop in the beginning. I feel like her skits started out with the best (obvi who doesn’t love Andy Samberg) and then kinda went downhill from there. We got the memo, Miley, you like to smoke pot.
Apart of me thinks she would have shocked us more if at any point she just would have come out and been normal. I believe her good messages (like peace, equality, acceptance) are overshadowed by her antics. She got our attention in 2013, but it’s fading now with the same tripped-out moves.
Miley vs. Nicki: #newbadblood
By now we all know about Nicki Minaj calling out Miley on stage for her quotes in the New York Times article released last week. The big question was this real or fake? I don’t think we will ever know. Initially, I wrote down in my notes (yea – I’m a dork and took notes) “fake fight between Miley and Nicki?”, but it’s really too hard to tell. As my FAVORITE gossip site, Lainey Gossip, pointed out in this post here earlier this morning, the camera was quick to cut back and forth between them to really capture the moment with the best angles. Lainey’s post sums it up great if you want to go into more detail about it, but in the end, we aren’t going to lose with this new feud. We will get one of two outcomes (or maybe both) – 1) feud-fueled music which we all know is good (hello – Bad Blood) or 2) a make-up collaboration, like I said, we could potentially see both of those outcomes happening. As consumers, we win with this fight whether it’s real or fake.
Performances: Girls rule, boys drool
Speaking of feuds, T. Swift and Nicki stole the show from the very beginning with Nicki’s performance and Swift’s cameo! Overall, age old saying “girls rule and boys drool” applies to last night’s performances. So here we go in order ranking order:
- #1: Nicki Minaj’s opening! This is the kind of performance I expect from the VMA’s, great costumes, excellent dancing, surprise guest you’ve feuded with! Nicki opened with Trini Dem Girls which was entertaining and energetic, transitioning into The Night is Still Young only to have Taylor pop out and sing verses together!! I wanted to scream when that happened! Taylor has been the Queen of Cameo’s with her 1989 tour, so this was beyond fitting. They closed it up with few bars of Bad Blood, putting the cherry on top of what was the most memorable performance of the night.
- #2: Tori Kelly singing her Should’ve Been Us – prior to this performance, I had heard the song but couldn’t tell you who Tori Kelly was or what she looked like or anything. But damn, this girl brought it! First off, loved the look – her crocheted sparkly one piece and jacket was stylish but not overshadowing her epic vocals. Her hair and make-up were awesome, too. The real show stopper were the vocals at the end. She really brought it home. Loved it – will totally be watching out for this chick now!
- #3: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ Downtown comes in at third. I thought including old school rap greats, Grandmaster Caz, Melle Mel and Kool Moe Dee, was awesome! It brought the performance to a whole other level. Obviously, staging the production in downtown LA was fitting due to the name of song and the current revival of downtown LA life. Finally, Eric Nally’s vocals were spot on. The only thing I can’t shake is how much the chorus sound’s a lot like Petula Clark’s Downtown…maybe it’s supposed to? Seriously, listen to them back to back.
- #4: Miley’s new song Dooo It….it was supposed to be “shocking” with the lyrics, transgender performers, lewd dancing, plush guys shooting bong-guns between her legs, but it kinda wasn’t. Sure, it was entertaining, but I think what would have shocked us more if Miley done something normal or sat on a stool and A Capella. Overall, the performance was well put together and executed at a high level.
- #5: Tie – Cool for the Summer by Demi Lovato and Pharrell William’s Freedom.
- Cool for the Summer – Decent. I feel like it could have been edgier or cooler if she had kept her props and back-up dancers in the same color scheme of the stage and her costume which were black and purple. Her props and dancers were all too bubble gummy Katy Perry pop-ish for the cool factor that song puts out. The song, stage and her styling all had this badass feeling to it which contrasted with the bright neon colored back up dancers and summer time props…they didn’t gel just right.
- Freedom – it was all right. I felt like it was kinda like a Parisian Newsies? Or sorta like Westside Story? Like at any moment I was expecting the Sharks and Jets to rumble on stage over Maria which is not the point of the song…
- #6: The Weekend’s I Can’t Feel My Face – this got great reviews by some…I was bored during it and checked my instagram feed. Best part of it was Kanye’s Taylor Swift dance moves during a cutaway. I know people loved the fire at the end, but I was already too bored to care.
- #7: Justin Bieber’s Where Are You Now and What Do You Mean…..blah….the choreography was a poor man’s Usher/Justin Timberlake/NSYNC wrip-off, and his moves were not as tight as his back-up dancers. They did it better and when you are trying to do a redemption “I am changed” performance, you need to be sharper than your back-ups. Then he cried…WHY DID THEY NOT CUT TO SELENA GOMEZ?!!?!?!?!?! (UPDATE: the production couldn’t cut to her because she and the Swift #squad left during his performance to go take a break – AWESOME move!) That would have been f-ing gold! And I’m all for a man expressing emotions, but his were manufactured. I don’t believe he was sincerely moved to tears. I gonna give him a big AS IF! Beliebers are going to hate me for this.
- #8: that performance with those guys at some point towards the end. I don’t know who they are, and I’m too lazy to google it at this point. It was so unimpressive, that trying to figure out who they are and what they performed is not worth my time.
To sum it up, the woman won the show with their performances!
Kanye & Taylor: BFFs
They were all about each other, and the show was kind of all about them. Taylor brought her Bad Blood #squad, and thanked them for being so awesome when she basically won everything except the Video Vanguard Award, that being bestowed upon Kanye. He stole her dance moves and squirmed around in his seat as a joke when she won best female artist, alluding to when he stole the mic from her in ’09. She revisited that moment when she presented him with his award. It was all so cute………….I have a few things about all of this though – of course I do. I am a firm believer in the conspiracy theory that back in ’09 when he stole the mic, that whole thing was staged. At the time, they had the same publicist and something about the whole thing just felt a lil manufactured? Now, do I think MTV had the intention of bringing this so full circle 6 years later? Naw, but the ’09 mic steal didn’t hurt either of their careers, and hmmm….seems to have only helped. Things have really worked out for both of them in the end. Two things from Kanye’s acceptance soliloquy – 1) if you don’t like award show’s which are just celebrities blowing smoke up other celebrities’ asses (there are no award shows in real life), then pull a Joaquin Phoenix and don’t support them…after all, Kanye did show up to collect the award….All right, 2) why does it take having a daughter for some men out there to realize they shouldn’t be assholes to women? This isn’t all on Kanye….you know how it is, some guy is a complete POS to women, and then he has a daughter and a light bulb goes off! Here’s an idea jerk-men, maybe just don’t be jerks in the first place and treat all people the same! Okay – rant over.
MIA: Key Players Not There
Hate to say it but I missed Bey & Jay…they are always good for some cutaways of Beyoncé’s face being smug or even a cameo in a performance. They should have been there. Rihanna!!! I really missed RiRi! She brings the fashion and the drama! There was definitely a Rihanna void in the show. And since it was the night of T. Swift winning, Katy Perry’s presence would have been great to juxtapose the all Swifty-ness – it would have been even better if she showed up with John Mayer.
Conclusion: Final Thoughts
Overall, it was decent, but I’m happy I don’t have to turn on MTV for another year now. And so concludes my first ever award show review!! Wahoo!! Cannot wait till we really get into it this award season!
Wet Hair, Don’t Care