Originally published on Sumner Newscow on March 19, 2021
Happy Friday. On Sunday, March 14, the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards decided to do what every other live TV program could not during a pandemic: they adjusted well. In the last year, we’ve been subjected to a Super Bowl that turned into a super spreader event and a Golden Globes so dull it was unwatchable (even for the Golden Globes). But the Grammy’s actually thought ahead.
The Grammys — and awards shows in general — nearly always misunderstand what their audience wants to see. If it’s the Oscars, the audience wants to see more of the awards, but the Grammys finally figured out they never pick the best winner, so they might as well present as few awards as possible and focus on the music, instead.
With 23 performances in the evening, not including the in-memoriam segment, it was a busy night on stage. So, let’s break down some of the winners and losers of the night:
Winner: the new format
As you may have guessed by now, I am very happy with how they constructed the event. Trevor Noah, our occasionally decent host, told us at the top of the program that they understand what we’re missing.
The responsible people in the country haven’t been to a concert in a year and the Grammys sought out to remedy that wrong; and remedy they did. Most of the broadcast was dedicated to performances of the songs we’ve all missed out on dancing to in seedy bars during our time indoors.
Best of all, the artists knew we’ve already seen the music videos before and spiced up every performance to compensate. Nearly every song was re-imagined for the Grammys stage, from DaBaby’s symphony to Doja Cat’s (5th rendition of) Say So. Awards shows are not a time to play what we’ve already heard and it’s great to see the Grammys finally realize that.
Loser: Trevor Noah
I love Trevor Noah, I really do…but improv is not his thing. Trevor was the first late-night talk show host to adequately adjust to quarantine, but that doesn’t automatically qualify him as a good host. That being said, he was very good when he had material prepared.
Most of the time he was speaking, it sounded like another episode of the Daily Show, but unfortunately, not everything is scripted. As a host, he had to send us to a commercial after every performance and managed to ruin the mood every time.
The most egregious example of this was directly following Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s first live performance of WAP (more on that later). After the duo got everyone in the country hot and bothered, Trevor, came on stage to cool us right back off with horrible improv.
I still love Trevor, but he should stick a script (which is perfectly fine).
Winner: Megan thee Stallion
This is almost a formality at this point, because Megan doesn’t need anyone to tell her that she’s been winning. Megan thee Stallion hasn’t taken her foot off the gas pedal since hot girl summer all the way back in 2019.
She kept that streak of winning alive by winning the first award of the night: Best New Artist. Her award was announced by the elegant and hilarious Lizzo and the chemistry and genuine friendship between the two was the perfect start to her evening.
Megan went on to win three awards and each time she graced us with an acceptance speech, it was authentic and made the world fall in love with her even more.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t all roses for her because…
Loser: Megan thee Stallion
It will come as no surprise to anyone who regularly keeps up with the Grammys that they didn’t choose the best winners. Not only do the Grammys have a horrible track record with their selections in general, but they’re also especially bad at acknowledging artists of color (like how the hell did Chloe x Halle go home empty-handed).
That sad fact was abundantly clear yet again at the grand finale of the program when they announced Record of the Year. The award went to Billie Eilish for her song Everything I Wanted, which is a very good song, but nowhere near as impactful as Megan’s Savage Remix feat. Beyoncé.
Eilish received a lot of hate last year when she swept the Grammys and showed remorse when she received this award as well. She used her acceptance speech to say the real winner should’ve been Megan, which is eerily similar to Adele’s plea to the committee to give Beyoncé her due back in 2017.
I would like to acknowledge that Eilish is still 18 and very much a kid, so let’s try not to criticize her when she does nice things like this and instead, direct our ire at the Grammys. Megan deserved that award (for WAP), but progress seems to always take baby steps.
The Grammys knew they had to do a rendition of WAP because it was the obvious winner of record of the year, but award shows always play politics. To appease the pearl-clutching faction of the country, they set their censoring standards back 20 years on what the artists could say.
They censored words I’m even allowed to use in this article: a*s. See that? No censoring. (EDITOR’ NOTE – Nice try).
America has taken great strides in the last decade towards realizing there is no such thing as a bad word and the only reason we can’t say the F word on the morning news is that losers and old people will write too many letters to the network.
Quit censoring language, it isn’t necessary anymore and everyone will benefit from it. Do you realize how much better the world will be when we finally just let talk show guests just tell Tucker Carlson he’s a f***ing liar?
And by the way, if you’re offended by measly words, I guarantee your kids use way more of them than you think, and maybe try being less of a snowflake (to borrow a phrase).
Winner: Bisexual people
You can call the performers a lot of things, but ugly isn’t one of them. We started the night with a performance from a shirtless Harry Styles and it kept that sweaty tone the entire evening. As the program went on, we were graced with appearances from DaBaby, Dua Lipa, the WAP crew, BTS, Black Pumas, and more that made for a hot and heavy night.
I’m not sure what year it was when ugly people stopped pursuing careers in music, but I thank them for their sacrifice. Don’t believe me? Pitchfork gathered every performance in one handy link to do your own homework. Go on, you’ve worked hard enough this week, treat yourself.
So, while the Grammys still didn’t do very well with their decisions, they seem to understand what the viewers want to see: hot people of various genders singing their silly little songs. Cheers to a hopeful future where this becomes the norm.
Meme of the week:
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