MTV Video Music Awards 2012 air Thursday

ssorich@ledger-enquirer.comSeptember 4, 2012 

You see some weird things when you wake up earlier than usual. Like music videos.

When I recently set my alarm for an ungodly hour, I found something shocking on TV: real bands performing real music in real videos.

Of course, anyone who's heard a One Direction song might dispute my use of the phrase "real music." Nonetheless, you have to admit I witnessed something rare that morning.

Did I mention it wasn't 1992?

There's no shortage of jokes about the lack of music on MTV. Yet the network continues to air its annual Video Music Awards.

This year's show airs 8 p.m. Thursday on MTV. Kevin Hart will host the live ceremony, which will feature performances by Pink, One Direction, Taylor Swift and more.

Follow ledger-enquirer.com/awards for updates throughout the show.

Who will win the big awards? Here's a better question: Who cares?

Winners now take second place to buzzworthy moments and elaborate performances at major pop culture awards ceremonies.

It's common to sit through 30 minutes and wonder if presenters have handed out any awards yet.

But who needs awards when you can spend an entire night wondering if Kanye West will say something offensive?

Speaking of Mr. West, it's impossible to discuss his VMA history without mentioning Taylor Swift. She's slated to perform her new song, "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together," at the show.

I assume we're stuck with an unfortunate constant: Taylor Swift's "aw, shucks" reaction to audience praise.

Even though awards shows thrive on unpredictably, it's easy to predict some of the buzzworthy moments at the VMAs.

Somebody will wear something revealing. Somebody will keep the censors busy. Somebody will make an announcement with mild pop culture significance.

The tide might be changing, however. Absent from this year's VMA buzz? Lady Gaga, who was snubbed in the nominations. At press time, she wasn't scheduled to perform at Thursday's ceremony.

It's a harsh departure from previous years, when "VMA" was virtually synonymous with "Gaga love-fest." Meat dress, anyone?

MTV recently aired the series finale of its first installment of "Teen Mom." "Jersey Shore" is on its way out, too. Maybe the network is finally favoring substance over shock value. Or not.

Sonya Sorich, reporter, can be reached at ssorich@ledger-enquirer.com or 706-571-8516.

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