Breaking News

For Your Entertainment? Nice Try, Adam Lambert, But These Music-Awards Moments Were Even Creepier

The best news that Jennifer Lopez could possibly have heard this morning was that America is still more interested in clucking about public displays of gayness than in pointing and laughing when a diva falls on her ass. We imagine there's already one of those jumbo-sized Harry & David fruit baskets on its way to Adam Lambert's house with a thank-you card handwritten by J.Lo herself.

Lambert's performance at Sunday night's American Music Awards (which Rocks Off missed, being at an actual concert at the time) is merely the latest example of the lengths these shows have to go to in order to attract viewers. Shock value is more marketable than talent - as a certain Ms. Britney Spears could tell you - and while making out with a dude and having another one simulate fellatio on you during a network broadcast will definitely raise some eyebrows (we can hear keyboards firing off angry emails to the FCC from here), we can think of a few music awards-show moments that are creepier.


Reba's Red Dress (1993 Country Music Awards)

Don't get us wrong. Reba McEntire is a C&W legend and can wear whatever the hell she wants. The problem is, Rocks Off always associates her with our mother, who was a longtime fan. Seeing Reba come out in a revealing dress was not a pleasant experience for an adolescent who already had problems with girls.

Britney's "Comeback" (2007 MTV Video Music Awards)

Most of us would consider seeing our dead-eyed daughter torpidly gyrating onstage in her underwear a parenting failure. Luckily for the Britster, this is actually considered a wise career move in the music industry.

Eminem and Elton John (2001 Grammys)

This was seen by many as a way for the erstwhile Marshall Mathers to counter accusations of anti-gay lyrics, but we're still not buying it. Maybe it was the awkward "Please Don't Let My Pelvis Come Into Contact With His Pelvis" hug, the way he never makes eye contact, or the finger at the end, but we were pretty sure Em wouldn't be above calling the erstwhile Reginald Dwight a "faggot" if the cameras weren't rolling.

He would later say Elton helped him kick painkillers, so there's hope. We guess.

Miley Cyrus' Pole Dance (2009 Teen Choice Awards)

The song is "Party in the USA." And what's more American than vividly encapsulating our love of the transgression/redemption cycle by giving thanks to God after pole-dancing in front of kids while decked out in the latest adolescent skankwear? Nothing, that's what.

Best Male R&B Performance -- 1983 Grammys

Rick James gives the Grammy to Marvin Gaye for "Sexual Healing," but not before making numerous references to "getting some" from co-presenter Grace Jones. The man oozes sleaze, and this was before we knew about his predilection for kidnapping and sexual torture.

KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Peter Vonder Haar writes movie reviews for the Houston Press and the occasional book. The first three novels in the "Clarke & Clarke Mysteries" - Lucky Town, Point Blank, and Empty Sky - are out now.
Contact: Pete Vonder Haar