Monday, February 28, 2005

UPS AND DOWNS


host with the most

Up: "Black" Hollywood. Let's not make too much about this but you had Jamie and Morgan taking the two male acting spots, Chris Rock hosting, P. Diddy presenting, Beyonce singing what sounded like all the nominated songs, plus frequent audience shots of Oprah, Jay-Z and others. It's not like Oscar has achieved racial parity by any means, but if Denzel and Halle's victories from three years ago inspired a long exhalation (i.e. "finally!"), then last night was the casual saunter down the red carpet that says, "we're here and we're not planning on leaving." Now where the Asians at? And no, Sandra Oh sitting next to husband Alexander Payne doesn't count.

By the way, to all the naysayers who said people would be turned off by Chris Rock as host: highest ratings in five years. Later to the haters.

Down: Kanye West. Sure, I put his album as my #1 for 2004 but he's made it far, far too easy for me (and everyone else) to wait for his eventual downfall. This dude's ego is apparently crowding his brain out. The latest is this:
"Kanye West recently announced that he plans to charge for appearing on magazine covers in the future."

Some choice quotes: "If you're putting me on the cover and people are buying your magazine because of me, why shouldn't I get paid to be on that cover? You are going to have to pay me to do magazine covers now!"

Responds Jim Nelson of GQ: "Kanye clearly does not understand the sacred economics of magazines. We're notoriously cheap."

More to the point, last time I checked, Kanye is selling well but he's not doing Eminem or 50 Cent numbers. You think Vibe or XXL is worrying about not being able to do a Kanye cover just because they may not want to pay? It's not like Kanye needs magazines or vice versa - ideally, they help benefit one another, but Kanye's not capable of taking it to the car trunk like J.T. Without mass media, the only platinum he'll be seeing is the chains he has to sell to the pawn broker.