Bruno Mars and his crew opened the 2017 BET Awards with a high energy performance of his hit Perm. In the middle of his show Bruno suddenly stopped and said, “Stop the show. This is the BET Awards. This is supposed to be the livest party of the year!” He was questioning the audiences level of enthusiasm, but jumped right back into it and had the entire audience on their feet.
Host Leslie Jones then came running on stage to kick off the 2017 BET Awards live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles and the crowd went wild. “I want joy in this house. I know you all like the knee brace. I don’t care.” She’s turning 50 and said she, “Just don’t care,” and that’s why she wore her knee brace on the outside of her pants.
She joked about not knowing the new rappers names these days. She said she used to know them like Biggie, and Busta Rhymes, but then she asked, “What’s a Lil Yachty? Don’t you want to be a Big Yachty. I don’t know.”
She paced the stage and screamed through the whole monologue. “My BET Awards is going to be off the chain,” and she was right.
The first category was for Best Group. The 2017 BET Award went to Migos, Bad and Boujee.
Leslie introduced the next performance by French Montana singing Unforgettable.
The cast members of the film Detroit where up next and paid homage to the many Black men recently gunned down and read many of their names. They were also there to announce the winner of Centric Award.
The Centric Award went to Solange, Cranes in the Sky. She thanked her family, friends , co-producer, her husband, son and BET for the influence and images she grew up watching. “I’m so mumble. The best birthday ever.”
The Best Gospel Inspirational Award was next and the award went to gospel singer Lecrae.
Leslie joked with Amber Rose sitting in the audience about her recent photograph that exposed all of her. Leslie laid on the steps of the stage imitating it. Amber took it well.
A series of great performances followed. Starting with Post Malone who performed Patient. Migos followed with T-Shirt and Bad and Boujee. Remy Ma introduced Jessie Reyez who performed Figures. Leslie introduced Trey Songz who performed Nobody Else But You and Animal.
Leslie Jones did a video spoof on basketball camps. Hers was called the Leslie Jones Fantasy Basketball Camp where she taught some pretty usual basketball maneuvers. After the video, Leslie was in the audience handing out shirts. She told Floyd Mayweather,”The shirts are free, but yours is 10 million.”
She then introduced Chris Brown who performed No Bullshit and Party with Usher and Gucci Mane.
Sean Puffy Daddy Combs was next. He introduced the category of Best New Artist and the 2017 BET Award went to Chance the Rapper, No Problem. “This is my first BET Awards.” He thanked his team, BET and his mother who was in attendance. Diddy also announced that this film, Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop is available on iTunes.
Leslie Jones made DJ Kalee and Khalid stand up in the audience and said she was confused. Khalid sang a few bars of his hit Location to clear up her confusion.
Mary J. Blige sang Love Yourself with A$AP Rocky.
Leslie introduced Jamie Foxx and he introduced the Best Male R&B/Pop Artist. The 2017 BET Award went to Bruno Mars, That’s What I Like. He thanked BET, Debra Lee, “For everything you do,” and the fans. “This is my first BET Award. Thank you very much.”
Big Sean performed Sacrifices, Moves and Bounce Back.
Jussie Smollett took the stage to introduce Khalid who this time performed his entire song, Location.
The 2017 BET Award featured a moving sidewalk that presenters had to ride in order to get out onto the stage. It was probably a great idea in theory, but it looked hard to maneuver for many who took the ride.
Leslie screamed the next introduction to Xscape who performed Understanding. The ladies belted it out and then sang Who Can I Run To, one of their biggest hits, and rapped up with Just Kickin’ It.
A video throwback was next. Leslie went back in time to visit herself in the past working at Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles. She told herself she will host the 2017 BET Awards and she’s on Saturday Night Live. She cried when she told herself that there were weed stores in the future.
The next performance was by Future, Represent Gotta Represent.
Then is was Tamar Braxton’s turn to bring it and she did when she performed My Man.
Chief Executive Officer of BET, Debra Lee followed to honor the activism of Chance the Rapper.
She also introduced a video message from Michelle Obama congratulating Chance on the work and incredible contributions he is making to the young people of Chicago.
The 2017 BET Humanitarian Award went to Chance the Rapper and it was well desired. “I’m 24, to be receiving something like this at my age … it feels a little early.” He said he wants to be more involved than just his community in Chicago. He thanked Debra Lee, BET and his mother. “I love you all.”
Leslie then introduced one her favorites. Maxwell performed Gods.
Tyrese Gibson read the names of many of people we have recently lost and the music of Chuck Berry and George Michael was performed in their honor.
Queen Latifah, Jada Pinket Smith, Regina Hall and Tiffany came together to honor New Edition. After the video highlight their career, they recreated the Roxbury Talent Night where New Edition started with young men pretending to be them.
Several performers sang New Edition songs as members of the group watched from the audience and sang along.
The 2017 BET Lifetime Achievement Award went to New Edition – Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Mike, Ralph and Johnny too.
Johnny Gil announced a tour starting in November. Bobby Brown say he told the guys back in the day that they were going to be successful, and he thanked the fans for sticking with them. Rick said being in New Edition is a roller coaster ride. Ralph thanked his mother, father and his children. Mike said they did the film on their life, put all their dirty laundry out and 30 million people supported it. They thanked everyone as they left the stage.
After a short delay, New Edition returned to the stage dressed all in white and Bobby started off with Mr. Telephone Man. His voice struggled.
Johnny took over for Can You Stand the Rain and the audience stood and sang along. The big number was their performance of If It Isn’t Love. They brought the house down!
Prodigy was remembered by Lil Kim before the category of Best Male Hop-Hop Artist. the BET Award went to Kendrick Lamar, Humble.
The 2017 BET Awards were live and there was another technical delay, but SZA’s performance of Love Galore and The Weekend continued.
Beyoncé won the 2017 Viewers Award for Sorry. Beyoncé did not attend, but her protégées Chole and Halle accepted the award and read her acceptance speech.
The Best Female Hip-Hop Award went to Remy Ma, Money Showers. She thanked her husband and Fat Joe, and told the audience there are such things as second chances.
DJ Khaled followed and was joined by Quavo, Chance the Rapper, and Lil Wayne for I’m the One.
The 2017 BET Awards was full of high energy performances that probably caused it to move into overtime, but check out the rerun, because their worth it.