Last night was the 10th anniversary of the BET Awards and it promised to be the biggest show yet. I was super excited because of the rumors of Chris Brown finally being able to do the Michael Jackson tribute he should have done last year. It was a long (three plus hours) show, there were parts that were so boring, and parts that were forgettable. Only one moment really stands out. It’s what everyone is talking about today and it comes from my man Breezy.
I forgave Chris Brown a long time ago, not because I condone what he did, but because I believe people deserve a second chance and he’s so incredibly talented, it would be sad for his career to be completely over. Last night he was able to remind the world that he’s an amazing dancer and performer. He finally delivered the dance tribute that Michael Jackson fans have been waiting for and it was near perfect. I’m such a Chris Brown stan, I was nervous for him. I understood the kind of pressure that was on his shoulders. In a way it was his reintroduction to the world and he couldn’t screw it up.
As soon as I saw him behind the white curtain, in the perfect Michael Jackson pose, I knew he was going to kill it. Maybe the moves weren’t as sharp as Jackson’s, the moonwalk not as smooth, but I can’t think of another artist who could have come as close to perfection as Chris Brown did last night. Then came the shocking moment, as ‘Man in the Mirror’ played, he was so overcome with emotion he couldn’t continue singing. I was shocked. It was real and honest and kind of beautiful. Obviously he was mourning the death of his musical icon, but at the same time the lyrics to the song may have hit a nerve with him. Maybe he was telling the world that he is going to take a look at his life and make a change. The audience was with him. People were in tears. I was almost in tears. To see a young, black boy openly crying on national television is a feat within itself. It was an incredible television moment, something that people will talk about for years to come.
With that comes the other side of the argument. The people who think it was all an act, that he turned a tribute to Michael Jackson about him and his emotions, or that it shows how emotionally unstable he still is. (Four Four, one my favorite blogs has a great recap from last night). I think that if it was a stunt, it was a damn good one. For the first time since the incident, people are talking about Chris Brown for something positive. Even Perez Hilton seems to have forgiven him. Whether it was a stunt or not, it’s now up to Chris Brown to show and prove. When he won his fan award near the end of the night he said, ‘I’ve let you down before, I won’t do it again.” Actions speak louder than words. I hope he can live up to that statement. I’m rooting for him.
On to the rest of the show. Queen Latifah hosted, but didn’t seem to be a major presence in the show. She wore different costumes from movies she’s been in throughout her career, did a little song at the beginning taking shots as some of the celebs in the audience and kind of came out of the closet. But it wasn’t that memorable. Out of a ton of performances I only really liked a few. Kanye West opened the show, his first major TV performance since the VMA’s. It was an unusual performance, we couldn’t even see his face as he rapped from the top of a mountain, but it’s great that he’s back in the public eye again. I liked Diddy’s performance, and Usher made me finally like ‘There Goes my Baby.’ El Debarge performed twice. I’m too young to know all of his songs, but one of the things I love about the BET Awards is they always bring back some old school act that makes the audience go crazy. I enjoyed the Prince tribute. Janelle Monae is the truth! It just sucked that he didn’t perform.
The rest of the performances were just okay, or terrible. I love B.o.B, but having Keyshia Cole sing the chorus of ‘Airplanes’ was wrong. Trey Songz, no matter how pretty he is, didn’t sound that great. Drake was crap, as usual. Nicki Minaj lip synced. I miss the 2001 Alicia Keys. And I missed the last performance of the night cause I just didn’t care anymore.
Maybe I’m getting too old to watch this show with the wonder and excitement I did when I was a teenager, but the BET Awards haven’t been really good for me in a long time.
It’s always fun to watch though, and last night was extra special because Chris Brown now has the opportunity to get his career back.