The BET Awards were Sunday night and the show honored new and legendary black entertainers alike.
One of the biggest moments of the night was the retrospective performance by New Edition after the group received a Lifetime Achievement Award. Rolling Stone calls them “one of the most iconic, influential vocal groups in R&B history,” which was proven at Sunday’s show with the group’s own performance as well as the performance by the cast from an upcoming BET biopic about New Edition and its various members.
The group hasn’t released a new album in at least 13 years, but they have performed reunion shows occasionally, with or without Bobby Brown and despite reported drama behind the scenes on various occasions.
The drama may not be a thing of the past, however, as fans noted that Bobby Brown disappeared after performing with the group for only their first song. Twitter reacted in true Twitter fashion with memes and GIFs joking about Brown being too tired to continue performing or merely vanishing from thin air as if by magic.
— Ricky Cumby (@RickyCumby) June 26, 2017
Hosted by the hilarious Leslie Jones the show ultimately ran for 4 hours, falling short of many expectations especially compared to last year’s.
Notable wins included Solange receiving her first BET award ever; she thanked the “queens” who have helped inspire her like Lauryn Hill and Queen Latifah.
Migos won best group as well as getting the audience amped up during their performance. The group was at the center of some of the only drama reported at the show, during the preshow interviews. The group was being interviewed for Complex’s Everyday Struggle, DJ Akademiks said to Takeoff, “I feel like this is like a running joke, with you being left off ‘Bad and Boujee,” referring to Takeoff’s lack of a feature on the groups most recognizable single. Takeoff responded, “Does it look like I’m left off ‘Bad and Boujee’?”
It was an awkward exchange made more awkward by the outspoken rapper Joe Budden when he dropped his mic and walked off before the interview was officially done. Migos took offense, standing up in what became a tense confrontation with dozens of people streaming in to stop the fight that was trying to happen. You can watch the video below and judge for yourself.
Joe Budden’s explanation for his behavior?
They was just a little too sassy for me that’s all
— Joe Budden (@JoeBudden) June 26, 2017
Besides that, the night was mostly focused on its purpose: honoring black artists. Mary J. Blige and Trey Songz showed up, but that’s about all they did, with their performances leaving a lot to be desired.
Kendrick Lamar won Best Male Hip-Hop Artist, unsurprisingly; he also resuscitated Future’s performance of “Mask Off.”
Bruno Mars impressed with his moves and charisma in addition to taking home Bes Male R&B/Pop Artist.
Chance the Rapper took home the Humanitarian Award for his work in Chicago, his home-city. He announced in March that he would donate $1 million to public schools in Chicago, in addition to other work. He was introduced by former First Lady Michelle Obama and former President Barack Obama spoke in a video about the rapper’s work.
Beyonce swept the awards unsurprisingly, receiving, among others, Viewer’s Choice for Sorry, Video of the Year for Sorry, Video Director of the Year, Best female R&B/Pop Artist and Album of the Year for Lemonade.
Mahershala Ali won Best Actor for Moonlight, Taraji P. Henson received Best Actress, Hidden Figures received Best Movie and Serena Williams received Sportswoman of the Year.