This is a summary. To read the whole story subscribe to BostonGlobe.com
There were many “moments” at last Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards, but one stood out. Let’s call it the tipping point.
Miley Cyrus, the 20-year-old pop star, ex-Disney Channel princess, and aspiring Gene Simmons impersonator, was doing what so many VMA performers had done before her: floating an absent half-performance atop a confounding clamor of backup dancers, backing tracks, and pulsing lights.
To the tune of “We Can’t Stop,” Cyrus paraded down the catwalk flanked by a gaggle of black female backup dancers, some dressed in burdensome teddy bear costumes. At one point, she excitedly slapped one of their rear ends as though she were selecting a frozen turkey. It was weird and discomforting. Rihanna sat stonily in her seat, unimpressed.