I have to admit that, in recent years, I’ve skipped the VMAs because they just haven’t been what they used to be. This year, however, I stuck around and watched it with my niece, and while some moments were fantastic, others fell short. Here’s my take:
Katy Perry hosted the show this year and I felt like she fell a little flat. She has a great personality in that she can make fun of herself and she has a really quirky sense of humor that is rather infectious, but I feel like she might have done better with a co-host. The jokes fell flat sometimes and it felt a bit forced.
I was happy with the performances for the most part. MTV allowed some people (:::cough cough::: Fifth Harmony) to take forever giving their acceptance speeches, so they made up in time by cutting the length of some performances, which I thought was odd. In all honesty, I could’ve done without Lorde’s interpretive dancing to her new single (with no live singing whatsoever) in exchange for seeing some more awards being announced or full performances. Especially the Linkin Park tribute that Jared Leto so eloquently introduced. It’s been reported that Lorde was suffering from the flu, so if that was the reason for not actually singing, then I give her credit for still showing up. If I had the flu, my ass would’ve been in bed, under the covers with a box of tissues binge-watching something on Netflix, not jumping around on stage.
We also got an exclusive premiere of Taylor Swift’s new single, “Look What You Made Me Do.” Now, I’m all for the exclusive premieres because they’ve done that for years, but 1) Taylor Swift wasn’t even in attendance and 2) It felt like the video was like 10 minutes long. Again, I would’ve rather seen some more live performances or awards being announced.
Either way, there was a huge theme going on throughout the show where celebrities used their platform to address important issues going on in the world right now and I applaud them for speaking up without hesitation. Paris Jackson, daughter of the late Michael Jackson, used her time as a presenter to say, “I hope we leave here tonight remembering that we must show these Nazi, white supremacist jerks in Charlottesville and all over the country that as a nation with liberty as our slogan we have zero tolerance for their violence, hatred, and their discrimination,” adding: “We must resist.”
P!nk accepted the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award and used her time to speak up about self-image and how her six-year-old daughter felt she was ugly because she felt she looked like a boy. P!nk addressed her daughter and all others struggling with self-acceptance by saying, “We take the gravel in the shell and we make a pearl. And we help other people to change so that they can see more kinds of beauty. …And you, my darling girl, are beautiful. I love you.”
One of my favorite moments was when Logic, Khalid and Alessia Cara performed “1-800-273-8255” and sent an extremely powerful message about mental health to everyone listening. The artists performed the song, whose title is the phone number to the National Suicide Prevention Hotline, surrounded by a large group of suicide attempt survivors. You can watch the performance below and listen to the speech at the end for yourself (and you definitely should) OR you can read the speech here:
“I just wanna take a moment right now to thank you all so much for giving me a platform to talk about something that mainstream media doesn’t wanna talk about: mental health, anxiety, suicide, depression and so much more that I talk about on this album, from racism, discrimination, sexism, domestic violence, sexual assault and so much more. I don’t give a damn if you’re black, white or any color in between. I don’t care if you’re Christian, you’re Muslim, you’re gay, you’re straight. I am here to fight for your equality because I believe that we are all born equal, but we are not treated equally, and that is why we must fight. We must fight for the equality of every man, woman and child regardless of race, religion, color, creed and sexual orientation. So I say here and now, if you believe in this message and my message of peace, love and positivity and equality for all, then I demand that you rise to your feet and applaud, not only for yourselves, but for the foundation we are laying for our children.”
You can listen to what Brancey and I thought of the show by clicking play below:
Here are a few of my favorite performances of the night:
Did you watch the show? Let me know what your thoughts were and whose performances stood out to you the most!