As if the US version wasn’t wonderful enough, Europe decided it wanted its own MTV Music Awards, and tonight was the 20th such occasion. Happily, it promised to feature much less Justin Timberlake than the US version – always a good thing – after he seemed to rather monopolise the VMAs, only to be upstaged by a twerking Miley Cyrus, who opened proceedings here.
The other guilty party in Cyrus’ twerking episode was Robin Thicke, who was next on the show tonight. Thicke resembles Matt Dillon in “There’s Something About Mary” and is every bit as sleazy, although I always worry his David Niven moustache will blow away in anything more than a moderate breeze.
In a huge shock, his routine featured some scantily-clad girls, this time with the dancers demurely wearing
long dresses little more than body paint. At least they were Twerk-free.
Redfoo from LMFAO (that’s an actual person apparently – he’s a decendent of Motown wizard Berry Gordy) had a go at diversifying his career by presenting the awards. In the nicest possible way, I think he was out of his depth, but then Music Awards are notoriously bad places to try out new comedy material. Especially if you’re about as funny as a very irritating catsuit-wearing Iggle Piggle. Wearing a red suit and attempting a stage dive next to a half naked fat bloke was about the sum of it. Later, on seeing an egg he attempted, “What’s up Gaga?” and made perhaps the world’s weakest pun involving the phrases “cracking” and “Just Yolking…”. Oh dear.
Back to the music performances.
Katy Perry turned herself into a maypole, and for once I yearned to see a Morris dancer. She looked like a Pez dispenser for a moment there, standing on the top of a pole, before the pole vanished, leaving her hanging from the ceiling like a trapeze artist.
Will Ferrell (as Ron Burgundy) then appeared with “inexplicable continentals” Daft Punk on an Amsterdam canal boat, with some decent gags for once. “Welcome to Europe’s greatest city that isn’t London, Paris or Copenhagen…”
A baffling category next introduced by Ellie Goulding: “Best Alternative”. Alternative to what wasn’t made clear. Certainly Ellie Goulding was wearing something that was an alternative to covering up her derrière.
Back came The Tedious Guy From LMFAO, or TTGFLMFAO as we should perhaps call him, to introduce Kings of Leon, who played a U2-esque song from underneath a set that resembled a cage that bands appear behind in films set in the Mid-West of America to protect them from being bottled offstage. It wasn’t of course – about halfway through the song it became a rocket and lifted to reveal the band underneath.
The award for Best Female was given to Katie Perry and then on came Bruno Mars, introduced by the strangely soporific-voiced female announcer whose bored tones make Professor Brian Cox resemble a crazy US Shock Jock. “Social media” she droned, like an especially uninterested robot “is going wild with over four million mentions…” making social media sound as exciting as taking the bins out on a rainy day.
Bruno Mars did his usual stuff, only accompanied by a pole-dancer, presumably for contractual reasons after the show’s producers saw his routine and figured it needed to be less wholesome.
Speaking of less-wholesome, Beiber was then voted best male and made an acceptance speech that was barely intelligible and may have been filmed in a backstage toilet. Meanwhile Miley Cyrus popped up to sing a ballad whilst wearing a leotard that was only slightly higher cut than the one Madonna wears in videos. Behind her was a film of her chopping an onion, judging from the tears. Hearing her sing, for once I knew how she felt, but at least she toned it down a bit compared to the VMAs.
TTGFLMFAO then fired party poppers from his wrists and a firework from his crotch, in his most articulate moment of the show so far.
Eminem picked up an award, and jumped out of an oversized boom-box, the sort of thing that only happens at awards shows. He then rapped so fast, it impressively reminded everyone that if we are ever short of a horse racing commentator, he’d fit the bill nicely.
Introducing Snoop Dogg, TTGFLMFAO then got his first laugh of the night by saying Doggy Style was his favourite position…for reading. I can only assume they laughed at the idea that the guy can read. On tonight’s evidence, it seems massively unlikely.
Snoop then did the same thing he did at Live 8: introduced smooth grooves, and turned the air blue.
Our bland-voiced lady host then introduced indie-Bon-Jovi-boys: The Killers. Did I say Bon Jovi? With this song, it’s definitely Steve Winwood’s “Higher Love”. They realised their error and switched quickly to Mr Brightside.
So what was left, but for Miley Cyrus to accept an award for Wrecking Ball by sparking up a joint onstage (that’ll get the “outraged” headlines she’s looking for – good one Miley), and for Imagine Dragons to get the crowd going with best tune of the night, “Radioactive”.
Closing the show was Icona Pop (no, me neither) with electro house anthem “I Love It”.
As I contemplated why I should have stopped watching this kind of stuff twenty five years ago, Redfoo finished proceedings by bring fired into the sky unconvincingly, making this one of the few times I wished there was no such thing as gravity…
So goodbye MTV EMAs…until next time…