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BET Awards 2017: 15 Best, Worst and WTF Moments

Ecstatic (Xscape), messy (New Edition) reunions, Leslie Jones, technical snafus, crowd-rousing stints defined night of highs, lows

Oh, what a long night. The 2017 BET Awards, broadcast live on BET from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles Sunday night and hosted by a perpetually game Leslie Jones, clocked in at a full four hours – and not all of those heavily produced, star-studded seconds, minutes and hours flew by. Thankfully, the inspired, audience-approved performances (Migos, Khalid, Bruno Mars, a reunited Xscape) and acceptance speeches (Chance the Rapper, Solange) exceeded the thudding, disappointing moments (we’re looking at you, New Edition and Trey Songz). Mostly, though, it was a reminder of the impossibly high bar set by last year’s show, defined by jaw-dropping tributes to the recently departed Prince and a damn historic turn by a wet-and-wild Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar (“Freedom”). Here, a recap of the super-sized evening’s highlights and low points.

Best Worst BET Awards 2017

Frederick M. Brown/Getty

BEST: Leslie Jones Keeps Things Moving

In her first awards-show hosting gig, Saturday Night Live breakout star Leslie Jones was seemingly game for anything – time-warping so that she could surprise the ’90s version of herself with the news that she was on “the white people In Living Color,” flaunting her wrestling-influenced court style in an ad for her basketball fantasy camp, asking world-beating beatmaker DJ Khaled and R&B up-and-comer Khalid to clarify the differences between their names, comparing her down-there grooming style with Amber Rose’s. It wasn’t flawless, but her high-energy, high-volume performance kept the laughs coming and the show moving. 

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