Sunday, September 7, 2008


So the Video Music Awards are on tonight. I kinda want to watch them, but just for the performances. Although I check in on MTV often enough, I’m still out of it. Every year they nominate a bunch of videos that are rarely seen, but making sure that the big names of the day (and some from yesteryear) make an appearance, and try to manufacture something shocking. Most of the time it’s not. I used to watch all the documentaries on the MTV of the past, the “Greatest VMA Moments”, the “Best Performances”, the backstage happenings when MTV poured through its history back in the early years of this decade. But the last few years, as MTV has lost its way among the mass of other media, the VMAs have largely become irrelevant. What does it say when I—a person most of friends consider knowledgable about pop culture stuff—cannot recognize the host? Even his name (though rarely used in the advertisements), Russell Brand, means nothing to me.

The nominees, too, have also tended to include esoteric artists, a way to afford cultural panache with a group of hipsters that tend to not watch the channel anyway. Tokio Hotel? Not really big with the name recognition. The ones that do are superstars (Rihanna) and “kiddie music”, Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers.

I should know better than to watch the VMAs. It’s best to watch parts of it, selected performances, mainly, and now with the web it’s best that I do just that. I remember watching the show in its entirety several years ago (P. Diddy hosting? All I remember is him) and it was just horrible. I was so mad at myself for wasting two hours of my life on that dribble, and vowing never to watch the VMAs again. Of course, like most of my vows, I knew it wouldn’t hold.

It’s sad that MTV is relying on Britney Spears to give the show a boost. Britney’s “comeback” backfired last year (though I didn’t think the performance was that bad), and the girl should just not bother. But her career is in the same stage as the awards show: completely, totally uninteresting.

1 comment:

John said...

I don't think I've watched the VMAs since Jack Black and Will Ferrell were hosting. No, wait, I think that was the Movie Awards. At least those have clever skits.
Which was the awards show where the musician was sitting on top of the set and wouldn't come down? That was kind of neat. Too bad I can't remember who it was (somebody from RatM or Audioslave, maybe?)

Too bad it was Tokio Hotel and not Tokyo Rose. I can at least say that I knew Tokyo Rose when they were opening for Day 19 at poorly-attended ska shows.