Hosted by television couple Ty Burrell and Julie Bowen, the pair made the awards show watchable. But the two couldn't save the entire show, with Miley Cyrus looking like Lindsay Lohan, barely working sound, and Nelly Furtado's overly ironic performance. However, despite a dozen or so hiccups, the heartwarming tributes to fallen musical icons and Stevie Wonder kept us watching.
Take a look below at our list of the good, the bad, and the ugly moments of the 2012 Billboard Music Awards.
10. Hosts Ty Burrell and Julie Bowen
If you watch Modern Family, you've already fallen in love with them as a scripted TV couple. But did you know they're actually funny out of role too? They were self-deprecating, but it fit well with their hosting duties. They made several references to things that viewers at home were probably thinking, like "Why are we hosting this show?" The Moesha joke to introduce Brandy was a personal favorite.
9. Natasha Bedingfield's tribute to Donna Summer gets cut short.
So you ask a woman to do a tribute to a musical icon, but you cut it off after 30 seconds? Wow, ABC... that was a tacky move. I have a feeling the folks at home would have rather heard the end of the song instead of another obnoxious Sun Drop Soda commercial.
8. Several artists taking the mic opportunity to self-promote.
A handful of performers got the mic in their hands and took an extra few minutes to make mention of an upcoming project or album. Does this happen at the Grammys? Doubt it. And let's be real: Who really cares about Brandy or Monica's upcoming album release?
The Atlanta rap group performed its new single "Fight to Win" before going into a proper tribute to Adam "MCA" Yauch. All dressed in white and accompanied by the one-legged dancer from Michael Jackson the Immortal World Tour, this performance came in second best to Stevie Wonder and Alicia Keys. Will Cee Lo Green bring Goodie Mob into the mainstream?
6. Stevie Wonder and Alicia Keys' duet performance stole the show.
After an entire awards show of mostly second-rate musical performances, this was the best way to end the show. They did a medley of hits together, including "Higher Ground" and "Overjoyed," and it was absolutely flawless. Here's hoping these two do some original music together. Can't forget to mention Stevie Wonder's amusing blind joke during his acceptance speech.
5. Giving an award for being really great at Twitter.
This was definitely the strangest award of the night. But it seemed appropriate that Mr. Bieber took it home. Maybe they created this award just for him? Regardless, Bieber is absolutely adorable and still so awkward when speaking in front of an audience. Confession: I've got Bieber Fever.
The folks at Billboard thought it would be a great idea to (a) have LMFAO open the show and (b) let them sing live. I'm still waiting for LMFAO to make an announcement that this has been one big joke on America. Why hasn't anyone realized they're just glittery hype men? Their stage show was a hot mess of animals, back-up dancers, and the two men trying to maintain some sort of breath control. Eventually they just were yelling "Yo," "Yeah, Yeah," and "Party Rock" into the microphones. And the fact that they won awards over Adele and Coldplay makes me wish I were deaf. How's that for a rant?
3. Katy Perry's dreamy performance and 91-year-old grandmother.
While she may not be the greatest live performer, her stage shows always make up for it. Flying above the stage in a whimsical, cloud-like setting and surrounded by aerial performers, Perry premiered the song "Wide Awake." Apparently it's a song about her divorce from Russell Brand. She brought her grandmother along as her date, and she too has purple hair!
2. American Idols proved they do well even without Simon Cowell.
Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, and Jordin Sparks certainly did a well-done job off the American Idol stage. They should have let more singers take the stage in place of all the half-assed dance music. Perhaps Billboard should have gotten them all together to do a Whitney Houston tribute. After seeing Jennifer Hudson's Grammy tribute to Whitney Houston, Jordin Sparks' might have wanted to pick a different song. However, we do think she should get together with John Legend for some original music collaborations.
1. The Wanted attempts to bring back the boy band.
The British invasion arrived in the form of boy band the Wanted as it took the stage to perform "Chasing the Sun" and "Glad You Came." Although the members can sing, the lack of choreography skills was pretty disappointing. And hasn't that boy-band ship sailed? We thought the NKOTBSB supergroup was going to pop out from behind the stage at some point. Sadly, it did not happen.
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