When Kanye West took the stage at the end of the MTV Video Music Awards, everybody expected him to perform a heartfelt apology to Taylor Swift for ruining her MTV VMA victory last year. Instead, he crooned about what a jerk he was and even boasted about it. It was such a shocking performance that it made you wonder: Was it a work of bad-boy genius? Or just bad taste?
Our Pop & Hiss blogger Todd Martens gives it high marks as a work of music: "Much of the chorus of this new song isn't printable here, but West's latest is a statement of defiance, imploring listeners to have a toast 'for the scumbags,' among many other mess-ups. It's a song about celebrating the imperfections, and at the VMAs, it was kind of perfect. A+."
EW.com hailed it as "a complete victory, addressing his character flaws and acknowledging public opinion without relinquishing any of his power."
The MTV VMA crowd sure loved it. They jumped to their feet, cheering "Kanye! Kanye! Kanye!"
Or were they crazy? Do you think they should have jeered him instead?
After Kanye crashed Taylor's acceptance speech last year, roaring that Beyoncé should have won instead, he issued a bizarre apology, all in capital letters, at his Twitter account that seemed sincere but also suggested that he hadn't learned his lesson: "I’M IN THE WRONG FOR GOING ON STAGE AND TAKING AWAY FROM HER MOMENT! … BEYONCE’S VIDEO WAS THE BEST OF THIS DECADE! … I'M SOOOOO SORRY TO TAYLOR SWIFT … WELCOME TO THE REAL WORLD!!!! EVERYBODY WANNA BOOOOO ME BUT I’M A FAN OF REAL POP CULTURE!"
Do you believe that Kanye has ultimately redeemed himself? Or did he prove that he is a jerk and should be treated as such?
Photo: Kevin Winter / Getty Images