The epic online dance battle between Miley Cyrus (M&M Cru) and ACDC went live Monday night–well, not exactly, since it was recorded on Sunday–at the Teen Choice Awards, which Miley also hosted. ACDC, led by Step Up 2: The Streets director Jon Chu and one of the movie’s stars, Adam Sevani, brought in the JabbaWockeeZ to close out their performance, while Miley inexplicably featured LL Cool J. Is this one of those things where LL is so uncool, he’s cool again? And, for that matter, was LL–superhuman abs notwithstanding–ever cool?
Fuckin’ tweens. Why’d you hafta go and make things so com-pli-ca-ted?
The M&M Cru was declared the winner by cougar-licious Fergie, which was kinda bullshit (notice how few shots there were of Miley actually dancing), but, then again, it’s really a win-win situation for everybody involved. Disney owns Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus’s ass. Disney also owns Touchstone, which put out Step Up 2: The Streets. To paraphrase The A-Team‘s Hannibal: I love it when a corporate plan to take over the internet in a fake viral campaign comes together.
That said, I saw Step Up 2: The Streets Monday night (it came out on DVD last month) and thought it was a pretty good dance movie. And I totally want to put one of those floor trampolines from that club scene with Channing Tatum in my living room. In fact, I wouldn’t mind putting Channing Tatum in my living room, knowwhatimean?
But I was surprised and disappointed by the Japanese foreign exchange student character, Kido (played by Mari Koda). Mostly because I can’t really comprehend why an Asian-American director would resurrect that archetype yet again–you know, the key-razy foreigner who speakee da Engrish and dong undastan the wor combin ow you mouse. Yeah, Mari is Japanese and speaks with an accent. But so much was made of her foreignness and inability to understand her friends that it took away from her brilliant dancing. And the world presented in Step Up 2 is a perfect example of what people mean when they say “post-racial.” It shows people of different cultures and races mixing without complication except in the case of Kido. That seems to me like having it both ways. And it’s not exactly what I’d call “stepping up,” Jon Chu.
I will say that the movie is decidedly Asian. Not because it features a couple Asian characters, but because it’s about a dance battle called “The Streets” and the lead character, Andie, is a street dancer. Ultimately, though, it’s not the street crew who wins, it’s the performing arts SCHOOL KIDS. So basically the message is that you can stay in school and be cool. Wait–did my parents make this movie??
Here’s the last, wet scene of Step Up 2 where the school kids triumph. Mari is in the black hat and her body’s like rubber:
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