On of the BIGGEST NIGHTS in TV just went down in L.A.–the 2018 BET Awards! We are SO glad we still have a PLATFORM to showcase the MAGNIFICENCE that is P.O.C. This is HOME for some that don’t always get the ACCOLADES and the STAGE to share their GIFTS and TALENTS to the world. A show of this magnitude takes a lot of PEOPLE, TIME and THOUGHT to pull off, but that does not mean that some things don;t get glossed over. I mean it IS live TV–anything can happen and it usually does. No matter how many hands and bodies you have on deck to pull this off–there are some VARIABLES that just can not be CONTROLLED. SO we are going to run down the GOOD the BAD and the UGLY of the BET Awards..granted these are simply observations and opinions–NOT THE GOSPEL!
Let’s start this thang off with the GOOD!
It was GOOD to see some NEW emerging TALENTS get a chance to showcase their TALENTS! H.E.R. did an amazing JOB and we finally get to put a FACE with the VOICE. Ella Mai with the SONG OF THE SUMMER ‘Boo’d Up’ did not disappoint and after pushing that single for nearly 2 years she is finally getting her SHINE!
Also Janelle Monae was a STAND-OUT as well. SHe has been KILLING the GAME for sometime, but it seems this new PROJECT she is FINDING out who SHE is as an artist and reaching even more people with her openness and honest approach to themes of sexuality and self-worth.
That was GOOD to see! Also J.Cole’s performance was NEEDED. His MESSAGE was POIGNANT especially in the times we are living in now.
OF COURSE another ‘GOOD’ of the night was Anita Baker. Anita should’ve gotten ‘her flowers’ a LONG time ago. This living legend has HITS upon HITS–her catalog is amazing and the ARTISTS honoring her were EXCEPTIONAL, Ledisi, Marsha Ambrosius and Yolanda Adams really made Anita’s songs their own while still holding on to Anita’s SIGNATURE soulful sounds. NOW I could have DONE without Jamie Fox KICKING off the tribute… I mean they could have easily gotten Toni Braxton and Tamia to do that portion…but we gonna get on Jamie in a bit….
Okay we got to touch on the BAD… THERE was a LOT to go around. One HUGE ‘BAD’ that started from the PRESHOW was the TECHNICAL issues. There were sound issues, teleprompter issues and these things can definitely derail a LIVE production. ALSO going back to the RED-CARPET…Terrence J is a VET at this, so he knew what he was doing, but Cassie? She served no real purpose aside from something pretty to stare at.
ALSO–the OPENING of the show. You usually OPEN with a BIG artist with a BIG hit song, but we were kinda left hanging. It was confusing as to what was going on at the beginning then Jamie Foxx was singing or rapping or whatever it was he was doing it just didn’t GEL. AND while we are on that–the organization of the show just seemed ALL OVER THE PLACE. It didn’t seem to have much STRUCTURE as in year’s past. And again technical issues plagued the production again. Going back to J.Cole–we put him into our ‘GOOD’ category but his SET could’ve come a little LATER in the show to break things up and spread thins around a bit more EVENLY.
Miguel’s set could’ve been GOOD but his TRANSITIONS between the two songs seemed awkward and he kinda just ended with no real ‘finale’ I mean he stopped singing and that was it. It left us wondering if something else was about to happen or was supposed to happen. A little confusing. At least he didn’t stage dive this time and drag his NUTS on an audience member’s head like before. I don’t think we are ready for another one of those any time soon!
Another BAD I hate to say was Nicki Minaj. Nicki who USUALLY gives a GREAT show just did not WOW me. I think it is in due to the fact that her SINGLES just aren’t FUN NOR memorable to me. ALSO, giving her an EXTENDED set, you expect to be BLOWN away…but what we got was REHASHED Nicki with the same stunts and tricks and RELYING on BODY and sex appeal to sell a performance. It seemed like 2011. We need to see GROWTH in an artist this far into the game, but what we saw screamed of DESPERATION and PERSPIRATION and not a whole lot in the END. It was like she was BEGGING to stay relevant–but came off looking like a ONE-TRICK pony to me.
Another ‘BAD’ was Jamie Foxx. Now again, I like Jamie. He is FUNNY. AND I think back to the 2009 BET awards when Foxx hosted and the WHOLE SHOW was reworked in a matter of DAYS to TRIBUTE Michael Jackson’s PASSING. I thought he handled that EXQUISITELY. Nine years later–NOT so much. Back then when he had his hand in a lot of the performances and skits and made the crowd LAUGH through their pain, 9 years later it seemed to PAIN the audience to laugh. His JOKES were not landing and the IMPROMPTU bring a celeb out of the CROWD to make ‘magic’ happen FELL FLAT. It was like DEAD AIR on the radio–they went nowhere..and the SKITS just were not FUNNY. We have BEAT WAKANDA’s drum to DEATH! The ‘Black Panther’ bit and the ‘WAWANDA’ skit just seemed TIRED. We’ve DONE that–heard about it and BOUGHT the BLUE-RAY–time to move on. AND were any other MUSICAL GUESTS available. Jamie did not have to have his HAND and VOCALS in on all the TRIBUTES and performances. Him starting off the Anita Baker tribute sounded like really bad KARAOKE. It just didn’t vibe–in my opinion. Toni Braxton or Tamia would have KILLED that portion of the tribute. it just seemed like Jamie was spreading himself too thin and it showed. He appeared spastic and grasping at laughs and the CROWD seemed to want to be ANYWHERE but there at times.. so PART of his FAILURE could easily be blamed on a STALE crowd.
NOW my UGLY and this may seem scathing, but WHERE was the STAR-POWER!? I mean don’t get me wrong, the people who were there represent a GREAT group of entertainer, but where were the HEAVY-HITTERS? Beyonce, Rihanna, JAY Z, Drake, Chris Brown, Kendrick Lamar, Ice Cube I MEAN there were a HOST of the WHO’S WHO, that just were not PRESENT and it seems to be coming a TREND to SKIP the BET awards, UNLESS you are a BIG part of the SHOW or you are PROMISED a gaggle of trophies. Why not come ‘home’ if you can? SOME of these same celebs are ALWAYS front and center at the VMA’s, the Billboard Music Awards, iHeartradio, WHY NOT the BET Awards. Are your OWN not WORTHY of your ATTENDANCE? But as SOON as your career needs a TURBO BOOST or you become less not than what’s POPPIN currently, where is the FIRST place you return to–BET. SO WHY NOT show your face for the sake of the CULTURE. Because when your LIGHT begins to DIM, nobody has your back like your OWN. The MAINSTREAM will move on to the NEXT big thing, but your PEOPLE will always HAVE your back–don’t they deserve to SEE you? I’m just saying…
And where were the SURPRISES. BET usually always pulls out all the STOPS to bring to the stage something we’ve never seen. Either it’s SURPRISE appearances from some of our FAVES from back in the day, or some PAIRINGS of artists who may never share teh same stage at the same time. This year there was NONE of that. Do you recall the year Alicia Keys brought out a host of the 90’s girl groups like En Vogue and SWV, and they all perforeMED TOGETHER? Or when The FUGEES opened the show after not performing together in YEARS? And we will never have the TYPE of MAGIC of two GREATS like James Brown and Michael Jackson sharing the same space a the same time! That type of MAGIC is what DREAMS are made of and TRUE RATINGS GOLD! We are missing that or at least something LIKE that. I don’t know what part of the PUZZLE or WHO is missing from the PLANNING of this annual FETE, but whatever it is–it needs to be FIXED. The GREATEST show on TV all year is DEFINITELY losing some of its LUSTER…and that’s UGLY. We mant to make the BET AWARDS BEAUTIFUL again…because we are.
But again….it’s still one of the BEST SHOWS in town.. just needs a REBOOT and we are back in the game. SEE YOU NEXT YEAR…