Culture News

The VMAs Were a Tribute to Chadwick Boseman

Hosted by Keke Palmer, the 2020 VMAs featured many highlights—a Lady Gaga's masks, Miley Cyrus's wrecking ball, and the Black Eyed Peas' UFO, to name a few. But Chadwick Boseman was an overarching presence.

Keke Palmer and Chadwick Boseman

The 2020 VMAs were different from the start.

At the very beginning of the show, host Keke Palmer told viewers that the night was dedicated to Chaswick Boseman, who died on Friday after a private fight with colon cancer.

"Before we get into the music tonight, we need to take the time to talk about the devastating loss of Chadwick Boseman, an actor whose talent and passion were a true inspiration to all the fans he touched, and everyone he encountered," Palmer said. "We dedicate this show to a man whose spirit touched so many. He's a true hero – not just on screen, but in everything he did. His impact lives forever."

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These days, kids don't remember that MTV used to be home to some of the most distinctive animation on television.

While the channel has since become a reality TV-soaked abyss, MTV used to cater to outlandish adult animation that was far more brazen than anything seen on Comedy Central.

MTV would often champion shows that didn't have a chance in hell of surviving the mainstream channels. Some efforts would die out quickly, such as the animated sketch show Popzilla, which featured poorly characterized celebrities doing nothing of importance (in one segment, Criss Angel watches Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in a crowded movie theater and obnoxiously comments on how he could actually perform the spells.)

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New Releases

All the Easter Eggs in Taylor Swift's "The Man" Music Video

Swift transforms into the most manly of men for her new self-directed video.

Throughout her many years spent in the public eye, Taylor Swift has faced unimaginable scrutiny over both her professional and personal lives.

But the 30-year-old pop star is still chugging along, having released her seventh studio album, Lover, last year to generally favorable reviews. On one of the record's highlights, "The Man," Swift ponders how she might be perceived and spoken about if she were a man. To help bring that vision to life, she was made over into Tyler Swift—yes, that's really her in prosthetics—to play a macho, manspreading dude in the new music video for "The Man," which she directed herself.

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Swift is a known fan of subtle references in her material, and "The Man" comes full with a basket of Easter eggs. Here are just a few that we caught—knowing her, there are likely many more hidden in there.

Taylor of Wall Street

In the second verse, Swift sings: "I'd be just like Leo in St. Tropez." From commanding an office to being surrounded by scantily clad women on a boat, the music video draws a few visual parallels to The Wolf of Wall Street, in which Leonardo DiCaprio starred as infamous stockbroker Jordan Belfort.

Bios

Kanye West

All you need to know

Full Name: Kanye Omari West

Date of Birth: June 8, 1977

Born: Atlanta, GA (raised in Chicago)

Occupation: Rapper, producer, designer, entrepreneur

Status: Married to Kim Kardashian West (2014)

Children: 3

Kanye West's World

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Kanye West is all over the map. From his music to meetings in the Oval Office, West is a whirlwind of everything entertainment, culture, current events, and more all spinning into something spectacular to see. Like him or not, it's hard to deny that West has a major influence over the current climate. Be it through his lyrics or his lessons, West isn't shy about speaking his mind. His critics are on top of West's every word, waiting impatiently to call him out on any inaccuracies or incoherent ideas. But the rapper isn't worried about the naysayers. Controversy is what keeps West afloat. Calling out what he thinks is unjust is his self-appointed duty. And if he wants to top off his look with a bright red "Make America Great Again" cap, by golly, he'll wear one proudly. So much more than a performer, West is making people think, debate, and do something. And if that "something" is to tune him out, it only makes West more determined to make a difference.

Taking the Mic

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West's music has been drawing in fans since the early 2000s. From The College Dropout to Yandhi, his albums have been fan favorites, with lyrics that have received attention and admiration, and production that has been praised. Collaborations have kept the rapper cool, touring brings the best of West around the world, and new music adds freshness to fuel West's fire. And West has an opinion (naturally) on his peers' work too. We'll never forget that incident when West snagged the mic from Taylor Swift at the 2009 VMAs. She was eager to accept the award for "Best Female Video" when a wild West rudely interrupted her joy to declare Beyoncé should have taken home the trophy instead. With an audience shocked and stunned and Swift left perplexed, West was sure he was in the right, but this moment will go down in history as one of West's less-than-stellar moments.

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Keeping Up with Kim

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In May 2014, West married Kim Kardashian. Marrying into the ridiculously famous Kardashian-Jenner family only made West more well-known – gaining new fans who can't get enough of everything 'Kardashian' and keeping himself constantly relevant. The couple has three children – North, Saint, and Chicago - who join the ever-expanding reality family. Kim was married twice before, so for West's sake, let's hope "the third time's a charm" works in his favor.

Fashion at the Forefront

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Rapping may have put West on the map but his flair for fashion brings out another side of his creativity. Fashion brand Yeezy gets high marks for being chic, current, and cool, proving West is more than a one-trick pony. Fashion Week runway crowds have embraced West's wardrobe staples, enamored in the line's simplicity and sportiness, modernity and mood. West is dressed for success and making sure his fans look just as sharp.

West in the West Wing

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Donald Trump has found a staunch supporter in Kanye West. Their close relationship is confusing to some, while others are on board with the unlikely friendship and all that comes with it. Who would have guessed that West would be meeting with Trump to discuss the political climate and how West could aid him in his promise to "MAGA?" From prison reform to mental health to the 13th amendment, no topic was off-limits, not that anyone aside from West had a chance to chime in. Even West's wife is in on the action, recently assisting in getting a woman out of jail thanks to Trump granting the grandma clemency. Will politics be next on Kanye's resume? Perhaps his entry into the Oval Office is a launching pad for a presidential run.

Next Up?

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West's future is a big question mark. Will he make more music? Design a new line? Champion for mental health? Run for local office? And what about his family? Will he and Kim make more babies? How 'bout that move to Chicago West has been hinting at? Whatever he does and wherever he goes, we're sure to hear about it. Loud and clear. West is no wallflower and he's not done gracing the world with his brand of "genius." Even the president says so.


Melissa A. Kay is a New York-based writer, editor, and content strategist. Follow her work on Popdust as well as sites including TopDust, Chase Bank, P&G, Understood.org, The Richest, GearBrain, The Journiest, Bella, TrueSelf, Better Homes & Gardens, AMC Daycare, and more.



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Top Videos

2018 MTV VMAs – Hits, Misses, and So Much More

A Recap of the Big Night – The Big Winners, Fun (and fails) with Fashion, and Memorable Musical Moments

Last night, the stars came out to sing, schmooze, and see and be seen.

The VMAs are always entertaining, from the outfits to the on stage performances. With J. Lo receiving the night's highest honor, taking home the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, Madonna giving an "it's all about me" speech to "honor" the recently departed Aretha Franklin, and plenty performances to wow the crowd, the show, while not the most outrageous we've seen, was VMAs-ish enough to hold its own.

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With presenters including The Backstreet Boys, Kevin Hart, Millie Bobby Brown, and Tiffany Haddish, performances by Nicki Minaj, Shawn Mendez, a well-deserved lengthy one by Jennifer Lopez, and others, and lots of fun and flair throughout the night, the show went along smoothly, yet not spectacularly, as some reviews have mused. Still, who could resist seeing some of the year's biggest and best stars come together to celebrate and collaborate, making the awards night a bright spot for what would have otherwise been a blah Monday night.

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FILM & TV

The Top 10 Wildest VMA Moments

Tonight, the Stars Take the Stage for the 2018 MTV VMAs… Take a Look Back and LOL

Will 2018 give us more VMAs WTFs?

When it comes to awards shows, the VMAs are known to be among the most laid-back and loose, giving way to wild and wacky moments we just can't seem to get enough of. From outrageous outfits to eye-popping performances, the made-for-music crowd is always up for a good time.

Tonight, fans will be tuning in to watch their favorite artists rush the red carpet, do their thing, take home awards, and mix and mingle, but what's always most fun is to wait for the weird. Wardrobe malfunctions, disastrous dance numbers, lip sync snafus, you name it. If it's wild, it's worth watching.

Let's go back in time and revisit the top 10 wildest VMA moments. We may have something new pumping through our playlists these days, but memories like these never get old.

“Imma let you finish”

We now interrupt this program...

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C'mon, Kanye. And poor Taylor Swift. She was on stage to accept her award in '09 when the "Wild West" swooped in and took the mic, proclaiming Beyoncé was the best of the bunch. Looking confused and concerned, Swift's moment in the spotlight was shockingly stolen. "Imma let you finish" by no means replaced a cordial "congratulations," despite who Kanye felt deserved the "spaceperson" statuette.

Madonna Plants Her Pucker on Brit and X-Tina

"Like a Virgin?"

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Swapping spit was never so strange. Why did this '03 performance require a PG-13 warning when singing and dancing would have been so much more entertaining? We get it Madge, staying relevant is vital in this biz, but cringe-worthy kisses can't bring back "Borderline."

Popstar Meets Python

Kanye surely won't come on stage now...

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'01 must have been the year of the snake because a young Britney Spears came out on stage ready to slither. Singing (or lip syncing) "I'm a Slave 4 U," she held the ridiculously large reptile over her shoulders and likely needed a sedative to get through the peculiar performance. Maybe the kiss with Madonna wasn't so bad after all.

It Takes Two to Twerk?

No "Blurred Lines" here...

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In a dance number (term used loosely) turned totally upside-down, Miley Cyrus' twerking and grinding on singer Robin Thicke was so weird that it was almost too much for the VMAs viewers. Cyrus was near naked and Thicke was in the thick of the perversion. Icky and idiotic, we all watched this train wreck with one "side eye" and the other one shut.

Lady Gaga’s Cow Couture

Were the shoes too much?

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Meat replaced material when Lady Gaga grossed out the '10 VMA audience with a dress that answered, "Where's the beef?" Flesh-for-fashion certainly made a statement, but when Gaga said dinner was on her that evening, she meant it literally.

Lil’ Kim Lets it All Hang Out

Her cup runneth over

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Want to upstage Diana Ross? Just let one of your "girls" take center stage and see where all eyes go. A strategically placed purple pasty made Lil' Kim's '99 VMA look censor-approved, but when it came to the nights "biggest boob," Kim took home the award for "breast dressed."

Burrito or Baby?

Beyoncé and her belly

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Beyoncé took the stage in '11 and gave a rousing performance of "Love on Top." But there was love in the middle too, as the star rubbed her belly signaling a famous fetus was forming. The audience was amazed and the gal was glowing. Talk about the birds and the Beys…

In Case You Wanted to Know

Who needs a publicist?

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Why take out an ad in the paper or pay for a TV commercial when you can advertise your upcoming album across your torso? Macy Gray let the '01 VMAs audience know her album was about to drop, forgoing style for sales. Not surprisingly, the bold message wasn't even the strangest thing about her ensemble.

Is It Cold In Here?...

Ever feel like you forgot something?

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Rose McGowan's date to the '98 VMAs was the always-awe-inducing Marilyn Manson, but even he couldn't dress unusually enough to top McGowan's gown (or at least the shadow of its existence). Leaving little to nothing to the imagination, this mesh number was certainly the most revealing look of the night, letting us in on Victoria's Secret… McGowen doesn't shop there.

Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley’s Marriage “Certificate”

"You are Not Alone"

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'94's VMAs was full of entertainment, but nothing had fans closer to the edge of their seats than a super-strange smooch between then-newlyweds Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley. Elvis' ghost definitely left the building when this on-stage stunt shook the crowd to the core.

Melissa A. Kay is a New York-based writer, editor, and content strategist. Follow her work on Popdust as well as sites including TopDust, Chase Bank, P&G, Understood.org, The Richest, GearBrain, The Journiest, Bella, TrueSelf, Better Homes & Gardens, AMC Daycare, and more.


POP⚡DUST | Read More...

MTV VMA's 2017 Recap – Top 10 Videos from Last Year's Winners

And the Video Vanguard Award Goes To… J. Lo, Naturally

The Oscars are Changing it Up