In the wake of the scandal surrounding the revelation of Janet Jackson's right breast by fellow pop icon Justin Timberlake at last week's Superbowl halftime show, CBS had announced that on it's 46th annual Grammy Awards telecast, it would be implementing a 5 minute tape delay. Both Timberlake and Jackson were slated to appear on the Grammys, however when CBS asked the pair to formally apologize on the air in order to be invited on, Timberlake accepted and Jackson declined. Timberlake's apology was presented as promised, and all performing and presenting artists conducted themselves in a very professional and not at all titilating manner in light of the sensitivity expressed by CBS executives. At least, that's the story they're telling you.
In reality, the 5 minute tape delay allowed CBS producers along with techicians from Industrial Light and Magic to remove significant portions of the actual awards ceremony, to be replaced by footage from previous awards programs, pre-filmed rehersals and digitally created scenes. In reality, the actual awards ceremony was far more risque than CBS would have the viewers believe.
The ceremonies opened with Prince performing "Purple Rain" in recognition of it's 20th anniversary. What the home viewer saw was a well dressed Prince, joined by soon to be 5 time Grammy Award winner Beyonce Knowles. What the home viewer did not see was when Beyonce said she was going to have Prince naked by the end of the song, after which she ripped at his waistline to reveal the now infamous assless pants he wore to the MTV Music Awards well over a decade ago. To add further shock, Prince was wearing these pants backwards in order to show off his junk.
Ellen Degeneress then took to the stage to announce a Beatles tribute, but before she did so, she told the audience she wanted to plug an upcoming appearance on CBS' cable sister station Showtime, where she would be playing herself on an episode of their new breakout hit series "The L Word", which centers its storyline around the lives of several lesbian women. Ellen then showed a clip in which she was fully nude and being orally pleasured by one of the series regulars. This entire portion was cut from the program.
She then introduced Dave Matthews, Vince Gill, Pharrell Williams and Sting to perform "I Saw Her Standing There", which was made all the more impressive when Sting, after performing, promised to introduce 100 female audience members to the art of tantric sex, to be performed on stage right, throughout the telecast. While Sting was making his announcement, Vince Gill was clearly seen performing fellatio on Pharrell Williams.
In the most shocking moment of the night, when Detroit garage rock revivalists The White Stripes took the stage to perform a medley of Seven Nation Army and Death Letter, they did so wearing nothing but red, white and black body paint. After the performance, singer guitarist Jack White threw down his guitar and proclaimed that the rumors of the duo being brother and sister were true, and that the rumors that they were once married were also true, and they would like to announce the resumption of their verboten incestuous relations right there on stage, after which Jack White rode Meg White doggy style until the pair collapsed in an exhausted heap.
That's when things started to get ugly. Each time the audience disapproved of a result, they began to hurl feces at the stage. By the end of the first hour, 3 performers were injured, 2 dozen more were covered in excrement, and the entire audience was repeatedly chanting George Carlin's 7 words you can't say on the radio.
The heartfelt tribute to Luther Vandross seemed to bring the crowd back down to earth for a while, however even at it's most tame moments, erogenous zones could be seen and profanity could be heard in almost every shot.
However, the sexually charged atmosphere never did reach normal levels, and by the end of the program when Andre 3000 from Outkast came on stage in a teepee shaped UFO he inadvertently incited a no holds barred full audience orgy with his infectious hit "Hey Ya".
CBS producers had their work cut out for them in splicing a coherent, nudity and profanity free program together, but thank goodness we were able to see the program they wanted us to see, not the one that actually happened.
When asked for comment, CBS President Les Moonves said he was proud of his network's acheivement, and that the actions they took adhere tightly to their offend no conservative policy. "Just look at what's happened in the past year," Moonves said. "We consistently pull the plug on anything that would offend the religious far right...in the case of controversial ads, we refuse the adverising dollars if the commercial is not completely flattering to President Bush, or with programming we'll just move it over to Showtime which doesn't tend to attract many conservative viewers anymore since Queer As Folk became a hit."