The American Music Awards lack the gravitas of the Grammys and the edgy absurdity of the MTV Video Music Awards. They’re your middle of the road, not terribly important, let’s-chuck-this-on-TV-right-before-Thanksgiving awards show.
But this year’s ceremony, broadcast from L.A. on Sunday night, managed to deliver a handful of bizarre sights, enough to keep us almost mildly interested while we flipped back and forth between the AMAs and the ”Walking Dead.” Almost.
Here are the five weirdest moments from the decidedly bloated three-hour event.
More on the AMAS:
Nicki Minaj sporting speakers on her backside.
The show’s opening performance teamed Minaj with David Guetta and a set design dominated by speaker imagery. In keeping with that motif, Minaj wore a speaker-themed outfit, complete with faux amplification on her chest and each of her butt cheeks. Call me crazy, but I really can’t see this look going mainstream, even if every office in America institutes Casual, Butt Speaker-Wearing Fridays.
Jennifer Lopez’s performance/Fiat commercial
J. Lo’s rendition of “Papi” essentially recreated her Fiat commercial, even going so far as to bring an actual Fiat onstage to serve as a backdrop while Lopez stripped down to a nude body suit with sparkles that covered all the necessary areas. Personally, I found the gratuitous promotion of Fiat far more offensive than the pseudo-nudity. And I was not alone.
Katy Perry looking like a pink spacegirl
It’s a given that Perry will show up in at last one wacky outfit. But this outfit was particularly notable because of its bubble gum color scheme and the fact that it appeared to have been borrowed from Judy Jetson’s closet.
Taylor Swift’s surprise upon winning Artist of the Year award
Swift had already won two awards when she took her third of the evening: the Artist of the Year honor. Really, it shouldn’t have been a huge surprise. But when Swift’s name was announced, you would have thought that someone had just told the singer the Earth is square, Thanksgiving has been postponed until March and the sky and the ground have now officially switched places.
“I can’t believe this is happening to me,” she gushed even though she won the exact same award just two years ago so, really, it was pretty believable. Then she rambled in utterly shocked fashion and said “Oh my God” six times, all of which made me really wish Kanye West would stand up and say, “Imma let you finish, but Adele is the best Artist of the Year nominee of all time.” I think America might have been on his side in this case ... or at least those Americans who didn’t vote for Swift to win the Artist of the Year award.
The LMFAO finale
Okay, there were about 70 weird things going on with this, starting with everyone in the audience wearing Old Navy 3D glasses, continuing with Justin Bieber bopping around onstage in cheetah print leggings and culminating with the LMFAO dudes and their dancers (one of whom was inexplicably wearing a box on his head) stripping down to smiley-face underpants. Icing on the head-explodingly freaky cake: David Hasselhoff coming onstage in smiley face boxers and a “Don’t Hassle the Hoff” T-shirt. In LMFAO’s defense, at least they didn’t bring a car with them onstage.