This weekend's Saturday Night Live has the auspices of greatness. It's not only the season finale, but also the last episode for Bill Hader (and quite possibly for Fred Armisen and Jason Sudeikis as well). And while Hader has already said there's nothing as dramatic planned for his good-bye as Kristen Wiig's lovely "She's a Rainbow" bit — they gotta do something nice, right? Also: Ben Affleck returns to host, but this time as an Oscar-winning director and if you think somehow Matt Damon won't be getting involved to cut his buddy down to size, youh ahh fawkin' crazy. And then there's Kanye as a musical guest: Not only is he embroiled in the most dramatic childbirth process since that of Jesus, he's also got a God-complex album everyone can't wait to hear. Plus, the last time he did SNL, it looked like this.
If my understanding is correct, the phenomenon known as "TV Upfronts" are the time for networks to show off their success — compared to the competitors — as well as highlight all the great things that the future holds for said channel. Is that right, resident expert?
"Seems about right. Also, open bars. And Kanye concerts."
—Andy Greenwald, Grantland TV Critic
"Staging a Kanye West concert" was the way Cartoon Network holding Adult Swim showed off at their upfront, held last night in Manhattan's Roseland Ballroom.
While it was a good show, and every bit the spectacle that was expected (expectacle?), in retrospect it was an appropriate venue to highlight the full range of emotions, reactions, and realizations that a Kanye West fan goes through at a Kanye West show.
Is Kanye Gay and Secretly Dating Fashion Designer Riccardo Tisci? Kim Kardashian was humiliated after Vogue editors cropped her floral print bowling ball dress out of every shot of Kanye at the Met Ball. "But Kim's humiliation ran much deeper than jabs about a gown. Some online commenters speculated Kanye, 35, is in a romantic relationship with the man who designed her controversial dress, Givenchy creative director Riccardo Tisci." AIRHORN! "Kim freaked out. If it turns out Kanye is involved with Riccardo, she will be utterly embarrassed, more so than she's ever been in her life." But she's done so many embarrassing things! "There are some facts Kim can't deny. Kanye has spent her entire pregnancy living close to Riccardo in the French capital — 5,600 miles away from his girlfriend. And Riccardo recently purchased an apartment less than half a mile from Kanye's in NYC's Soho neighborhood." A source says, "Kanye is obsessed with Riccardo. They have a very deep bond." HOW DEEP? "The whispers got even louder when Bryan Boy, one of the most popular and respected fashion bloggers in the world, linked Kanye to Riccardo in January." Bryan Boy tweeted, "Wait so Kanye West is gay? He and Riccardo Tisci were…lovers? And Kim Kardashian is a beard? Why am I the last to know?"
Things we already knew about Anchorman: The Legend Continues: It exists, and we get to see it in December, and, joining the gang, in some capacity or another, will be Kristen Wiig and Harrison Ford and, really, "nobody changes" from the first one. Things we just learned about Anchorman: The Legend Continues today: Kanye's maybe probably in it, too.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (via E!), Mr. West was in the building on Wednesday, along with lady Kardashian, for the movie's shoot in Atlanta. And the album rollout continues! But what was he actually doing? Says E!: "We hear that Kanye was part of a big fight scene (you know those local-newsmen rumbles that Ron Burgundy is always getting into) shot in Woodruff Park." (Looks like it's a multiday affair. On Tuesday, Amy Poehler and Tina Fey showed up to beat the shit out of Sacha Baron Cohen.)
First, and most importantly: Those rumors about Kanye West being a (OK, yes, only self-proclaimed) god are true. But let's back up a bit.
In March, rumors circulated that Kanye's next solo album would somehow have an even more preposterous title than My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Namely: I Am God. Then, word was Kanye wasn't that crazy — the title was actually "I Am a God," and was only the name of a track on this next album, not the album itself. And you know what? That still seemed (even for ’Ye) pretty damn nutty! Bless the skies, though, it's true. On Monday, at the 2013 Met Gala, Kanye performed new material. And he definitely screamed, while in his increasingly customary black leather skirt, about being a god.
Continuing a lifelong commitment to not giving a goddamn that you hate her, Gwyneth Paltrow went on Ellen this week and did an impression of Jay-Z. I mean, technically Ellen asked her to, citing insider information about Gwyn and her husband, international recording artist Chris Martin, playing this "musical impressions" game at home. But after the briefest of demurrals Paltrow went for it, making me suspect she was really gonna go ahead and show off her knowledge of "Dirt Off Your Shoulder" the entire time. In her defense, Paltrow — after years of plugging her own hip-hop obsessive bona fides — does know the words to at least one Hov song and one 'Ye song.
The Rock Had a Tough Childhood: "Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson has a reputation for being the ultimate showman, playing badass tough guys in movies like G.I. Joe Retaliation and The Scorpion King, and winning over WWE wrestling fans with his charisma, sarcasm and million-dollar smile. But behind his confident facade, it turns out the 41-year-old actor has been hiding the truth about his heartbreaking past — one in which he's had to overcome the pain of an alcoholic, unfaithful father and his run-in with the law." I love The Rock so much. "Dewey had a really hard time as a child growing up because he never saw his dad," according to Luan Crable, who had a "25-year-long romantic affair with Dwayne's father, former pro wrestler Rocky Johnson." Oh, my god, his father was a wrestler??? "Rocky was on the road 12 out of every 14 days" and "Dwayne must have worshipped his father, having followed Rocky into pro wrestling after a severe back injury ended his early football career." Man, this is Shakespearean.
Kim Kardashian Adjusts to Pregnancy: "Kim is well aware that she's famous for her amazing body and had no idea that pregnancy would change it so much." She probably thought she'd have a cute lil' pregnant belly, like her petite sister Kourtney did during her pregnancies. Kim has been "looking at old pictures of herself on her computer and phone for literally hours at a time, pining for her prepregnancy body. She is seriously melting down!" She's been posting even more photos of her old bod than usual for "Throwback Thursday" on her Instagram. A "celebrity weight coach and body expert" named Alicia Hunter says that Kim "looks like she's put on an insane amount of weight in such a short amount of time." She estimates that Kim has gained close to 70 pounds, instead of the 25-35 lbs. recommended. Kim knew that she would get bigger, but "she never expected such a drastic transformation so early on." Secretly she's "desperate to stop gaining so much weight" and it's making her depressed. "She cries every other day, and she's scared to see how big she'll get." While Kim is "grossed-out by her body, she's become obsessed with food." Her cravings take her to Pinkberry nearly every day. "She thinks it's healthy, but it's full of sugar." But, yogurt!
What's the old saying? "You can take the Kanye West out of the hood, but you can't prevent the Kanye West from bitterly calling up a radio station and behaving perfectly"?
We were reminded of this old soothsayer fable yesterday, as Mr. West called up New York's Hot 97 radio station and on-air personality DJ Enuff to discuss a list that perturbed him: MTV's annual "Hottest MCs in the Game." This list, like so many things that exist, simultaneously is taken seriously and couldn't matter any less.
"Remind me again why the Grammys can suck my dick?" Kanye asked on Friday night in London, during what is now his mandatory mid-show freakout/meltdown/one-man theatrical production. It was just one little moment of an eight-minute spiel — there was also a lot of stuff about how corporate America is ruining Kanye, trying to get him to meet corporate American executives' granddaughters just so he can get $3 million with which to buy a new infinity pool with a permanent chocolate fondue fountain or whatever — but it was the most apt. Because last night a bunch of rich, attractive people got together in a big room to heartily congratulate each other, and then today we're all gonna spend some time breaking down if those congratulations were handed out in the correct order, and were received in the correct manner, and if you'd much rather not care about awards shows, and would like to be reminded that it's OK not to care about awards shows by a guy who actually wins awards at those awards shows (albeit a guy who also, OK, yeah, might care the most of all time about awards shows but really doesn't wanna show it), feel free to ride the Kanye-rant train to pop-culture-contrarianism absolution.
Earlier this month, the rapper Joe Budden — he's a "star" of VH1's Love & Hip Hop, but you probably still know him best for "Pump It Up" — went on local New York affiliate Fox 5 News to bravely tell his story. See, all summer he'd been experimenting with Molly, and Molly almost killed him dead. “I didn’t see a problem with the fact that maybe five days would go by without sleeping," Budden told gravely concerned reporter Lisa Evers, while the two reclined on a plush couch in his New Jersey home. "I didn’t see a problem with the fact that maybe I was hallucinating at times." He managed, just barely, to fight it off, Evers told us grimly, with the help of people who loved him, and he hopes his plight will send the message to the world: “Popping a Molly can make you feel happy and sexy. But experts warn that just one dose can mess up your brain for life.” Then she plugged his new album.
I'm not trying to take the piss out of Budden's, or anyone's, legitimate substance abuse issues. But this, at least as packaged, is something else. The ominous allusions, the scarred survivor story, the aggressively substance-free reporting — this is a bit of Drug Trend Paranoia 101.
Like, 3.8 seconds of cold open go by, and then Khloé is saying to Scott and Kourtney, "You guys don't bone often," because Khloé is the best. Scott explains that Kourtney never initiates the sex and approaches the whole process with a We gotta get this over with demeanor; Scott also uses the phrase "the old sackaroonie," which goes a long way toward explaining why Kourtney's not initiating. Everybody's a different weird shade of orange.
After the Grammys it's the Grammys After-Party and after the Grammys After-Party it's the um, Post-Grammy News Roundup. One of these things is not as inherently scintillating as the others! But please, read on: It's been less than 48 hours since the big bash, and already all manner of mind-boggling music-biz news is brewing. Who'll be the big winner at next year's Grammys (if it wasn't for the fact that the Grammys' super-strange cut-off period means the big winners in 2014 will be people who put out music in 2012)? Let's find out!
Joey Bada$$ is a guy famed for his ability to rap really, really well. Lil B is, you know, not that. And yet this beef was over as soon as Based God rhymed the words "And if you really think you a badass" with "I turn you into trash you little bitch."