Dear Grammy Nominating Committee,
Whatever. Miss me with your drawn-out, star-studded event Sunday night. LL Cool J, Mumford & Sons, and Fun? More like No Fun. What made you leave out the biggest star on the planet, Justin Bieber? What made you forget what 20,000 screaming teenage girls every night sounds like? What was it that led you to pass on sending a last-minute private jet stocked with candies and sodas for JB so he could walk your red carpet, smile for your cameras, and accept a multitude of golden gramophones honoring his latest album, Believe, and not open up the opportunity for him to host and perform as musical guest on last night’s Saturday Night Live?
Was it the perceived lack of strength in his voice, his reliance on dance moves, and over-produced album cuts that made you pass on Biebs? Maybe that’s why Justin took the SNL stage last night and performed “As Long as You Love Me” with only acoustic guitar accompaniment, infusing a more mature tenor into a younger song. His sing-rapping of Big Sean’s verse was a veteran move too, while not moving at all from atop the stool in the middle of the stage. Award-show caliber, 24 hours early.
Was it the lifestyle that Biebs was perceived to have led that led you to pass on his Grammy invite this year? Maybe that’s why Justin guested on The Miley Cyrus Show as Pete DeFalco, the president of Miley’s fan club, and an ardent Bieber-hater. He gushed to Miley (Vanessa Bayer), “You’re light years better than that douche Justin Bieber.” He then followed up with some genius self-awareness, using his character to say of Bieber, “He looks like a lesbian . . . I heard he got busted for smoking weed, he’s really sorry about it; people make mistakes and he’s never gonna do it again.”
Was it the perception that Biebs’ attitude and relationships were too juvenile? Maybe that’s why Justin and Cecily Strong played 1950’s school-age lovers sharing first date details with their greaser and poodle-skirted crews. Bieber spit out grease-lightning-quick quips and showed genuine facial reactions, as it became more and more apparent that his character Billy was more innocent than previously thought.
Was it the perception that Bieb’s attitude and relationships were too grown-up? Maybe that’s why Justin played the perfect college boyfriend-type, who Nasim Pedrad takes home to meet her parents. You can’t be seen as too grown-up when you can’t keep the laughter in – Justin broke, thanks to Taran Killam, who plays Nasim’s older brother Eddie, the wise-cracking, live-at-home bully, who ends up stealing the sketch.
Or was it the perceived swag that comes with the Justin Bieber package? Maybe that’s why Justin took part in one of the best sketches of the season, in which Justin plays himself. Jason Sudeikis plays his head of security and introduces Justin to a team of precautionary body doubles, though some are taller than him, some fatter, some girls. Bieber notes, “Some of them are black; they’re not fooling anybody.” Sudeikis responds, “Well, neither are you, homie.” Later, Bieber acknowledges that these decoys “will never work.” Sudeikis replies, “I thought you’d never say never.” Swaggy in its writing, and the fact that Biebs can take the swag shots in stride. Swag.
Whatever it was that kept Justin away from Los Angeles, it doesn’t matter anymore, because for an hour and a half last night, Justin won more than he could have during any number of trips onto tonight’s Grammys stage.
Not Even a Justin Bieber Fan At All
P.S. Fun? Really?
Last Week’s Recap: Cameron Diaz and Jerry Seinfeld Coach Adam Levine on ‘SNL’