MTV might want to save themselves some hassle and just let Kanye West present this award because if Beyonce doesn’t win he might lose it. Again.
After a 25 year absence, MTV has resurrected the award for Best Long Form Video, renamed Breakthrough Long Form Video for the 2016 Video Music Awards and the decision couldn’t be more necessary and the absence more curious. The nominees are pretty cut and dry — Beyoncé’s Lemonade, Justin Bieber’s PURPOSE: The Movement, Troye Sivan’s Blue Neighbourhood Trilogy, Florence + The Machine’s The Odyssey, and Chris Brown’s Royalty — and the winner will obviously be Beyonce, but the question is why was the award gone in the first place?
In the 25 years since MTV gave the last Moonman for Best Long Form Video to Madonna for The Immaculate Collection, the medium has continued to be utilized and evolve. Artist like Kanye West, Lady Gaga, Diddy, The Beastie Boys, M.I.A., Green Day, 30 Seconds To Mars, Eminem and others have all toyed with extended music videos/films to accompany and compliment their music. Pharrell even took the long form video a step further with his 24-hour long experiment that was the “Happy” video.
Keeping the award around would have been a way for the network to push forward the medium and perhaps motivate artists to continue to tinker with and utilize the concept. Having an award show for music videos is in itself a nobel concept, pushing the boundaries of artistry should have been a direct result. Instead, it was a one time award way back when, and now a cheap comeback for an opportunity to hand Beysus a trophy and spike viewership. Well, congrats to Beyonce, and probably Frank Ocean next year, if MTV even bothers keeping the award around.