*Or the two AMA performances I've seen on YouTube.
So Adam Lambert closed the show and did this:
or hadn't you heard? And look, I'm not trying to be a Glambert hater or anything (I swear!), but my initial reaction (beyond the fact that his voice went off the reservation more than a few times) was that it was all so tediously desperate. Like, I get it when you're dragging the girl across the stage like she's a bag of meat. I get it when you're grinding the guy's face into your crotch. I get it when you're feeling up the girl's leg to her crotch. By the time he got to making out with the (male) keyboardist, I had to laugh. It was so very "Not enough? Well how about THIS? Shocked yet?" (By the way, Adam's trying to sell that kiss as "spontaneous" -- um, totally!)
I'm not offended by the sexuality -- though you put that shit out there on network TV and you know the outrage you're signing up for. And if he wants to be a provocateur, that's fine. But be provocative about something other than the desire to be provocative, you know? There's a fine line between Madonna's long history of shoving our face in it -- which always seemed to come at least partially from a place of rage that women weren't allowed to be sexual in the same way as men were -- and this kind of Marilyn Manson "please be offended so as to give me a reason for existing" theater. I honestly believe Adam is striving for the former (swap out women/men for gay/straight) but this kind of itchy-trigger-finger excess tips the scales to the latter.
EDIT: I should add that I also found the whole thing kind of hot shit, and if he'd pulled back on the throttle juuust a bit, I might have loved it. You know, sketchy vocals notwithstanding.
Also, I'm trying to reconcile my negative reaction to Adam with the fact that I remain endlessly amused by Lady Gaga (her AMA performance above). I think for all Adam's insistence that he's here for pure entertainment, Lady Gaga actually achieves it. And make no mistake, she's attention-seeking for attention-seeking's sake too. So why do I take to her more? I think maybe because her fakeness seems more organic. She just seems like a weird person, and while she's wearing latex face-masks and dresses made to look like bloody entrails and light-up granny panties all to make a show of herself, I feel like first and foremost, the show is for herself. We're invited to take it in or not, but she'll be sitting in her fire-cube regardless. I'm not sure what Adam would be doing with all those backup dancers if he didn't think we were watching.
Of course, despite the fact that I'm no fan of Adam's performance, fifteen minutes into watching The View -- and particularly Elisabeth's oddly passionate anger at Adam -- and I'm arguing Adam's side of the debate. And with the Thanksgiving weekend coming up, I suspect I'll be doing more of the same. I've been in these arguments before -- if I try to argue nuance, I just end up talking to myself for twenty minutes. I have a feeling I'll be sticking to the following talking points: Your damn kid should be in bed by 10:45 anyway, sometimes there are performances just for adults, and blah blah blah gay double standard. ...Okay, maybe I'll just avoid this topic altogether. I'm already bored.