Boy, there just isn’t much to say about the Teen Choice Awards, is there? They make a good warm-up for the coming late summer/early fall awards crowd. This year they’re given some interesting friction by being, of course, financially tied to Fox and their associated properties, which have recently just been purchased by Disney, and therefore in the next couple of years will represent an entirely different set of business concerns.
I’d say it would be interesting to watch what happens in light of all that, but that might be elevating the situation somewhat.
On the one hand, it’s impressive enugh that Taylor Swift’s fans continue to be out there supporting her in spite of her terrible PR and her disastrous album reception. On the other hand, BTS’s fans continue to make an international sensation not only out of a Korean boy band, but, by extension, a whole bunch of Korean boy bands which is even more impressive.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: BTS, BTS Army
Adwoa Aboah is neither a famous person’s child nor the child of literal royalty. This sets me more on her side than any of the other people, and thus she is the winner. So there.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Adwoa Aboah
Choice Video Game
Zelda: Breath of the Wild is great, but I’ve never had a panic attack in Super Mario Odyssey trying to figure out if it was time to use that particular sword (and have it break) or not.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Super Mario Odyssey
I like tWitch, but I guess I was not aware that he spells his name that way. So this goes to Jenna Dewan, who can have an $800 bespoke surfboard to help her get over her divorce or whatever.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Jenna Dewan
There is no way that living actual teenagers have any use for most of these comedians, right? Kids these days aren’t, like, super into late night shows? Or daytime talk shows? Or whatever? Anyway, that leaves Lilly Singh, Kevin Hart, and The Dolan Twins
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Kevin Hart
Choice Female Athlete
Please note that one of these athletes is, in fact, a team of athletes. That’s not fair.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Serena Williams
Choice Male Athlete
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: LeBron James
Choice Male Hottie
The male hotties are way more hottie-ish than the female hotties, I’ll tell you that for free.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Chris Hemsworth
Choice Female Hottie
Selena Gomez is the oldest of these women, and thus the one I am most comfortable thinking of in terms of “hottie”. I would also spell “hottie” with a “y”, but I guess that bird has flown.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Selena Gomez
Choice Style Icon
I don’t mean to belabor the point here, but why does Meghan, Duchess of Sussex get to be a style icon and not a hottie? THIS IS ANTI-ROYALIST SENTIMENT, FOX.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Meghan, Duchess of Sussex (that’s how she’s listed on the website)
Year after year, I forget to care about Muse, and year after year I spent ten seconds ruing that decision while I find myself with nothing to say about this category of this awards show. Tune in next year, where we may be surprised to find out if Muse has somehow lived another year when so many others have fallen!
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Uh….Mackenzie Ziegler is the only one of these who has her own Wikipedia page, so it’s her?
Well, the best thing a YouTubercan be is funny, and I’ve already decided that my editorial position is that Lilly Singh is funnier than The Dolan Twins, so I guess this one is already decided. Way to go, past me.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Lilly SIngh
I don’t know anything at all about Snapchat. Like, at all. But Ariana Grande is the only one of these people that’s ever made me laugh, and her Snapchat probably now includes Pete Davidson, so it’s the best one.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Ariana Grande
Some perusing (I do research, guys. Research) shows that Dwayne Johnson is the only person whose instagram doesn’t make me wish for him to come to bodily harm.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Dwayne Johnson
Hey! I like all of these people on Twitter! Good job this one time (and only this one), Teen Choice Awards!
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Kumail Nanjiani
Choice Fashion/Beauty Web Star
I don’t know how Shay Mitchell’s career has put her in this position, and I don’t want to think about it any further. James Charles was the first male Cover Girl spokesperson, so that’s good enough for me.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: James Charles
Choice Music Web Star
I guess it’s Chole x Halle, by the time-honored rubric of “I, an Old Person, have heard of them.” I understand this is the worst rubric. I get it. I’m sorry to all of you.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Chloe x Halle
Choice Comedy Web Star
Lele Pons is funnier than Lilly Singh. Thus is it decided.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Lele Pons
Choice Male Web Star
Eh. I kind of like Tyler Oakley. The rest of this is pretty much a dumpster fire.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Tyler Oakley
Choice Female Web Star
I can’t give another one of these to Lele Pons without mentioning that I miss Vine (where she did her best work) so hard, guys. I miss it every day.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Lele Pons
Choice Summer Tour
As usual, I judge these by how likely I would be to go to any of them. I’d like to think that I’d be likely to go see the Jay-Z & Beyonce tour, but they were just in Cleveland and I literally didn’t. So I guess it’s TDE.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Top Dawg Entertainment – The Championship Tour
Choice Summer Group
I don’t want to spend my precious time on this Earth thinking about any of these groups, so what do you say we just give to the one with “Summer” right there in their name?
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: 5 Seconds of Summer
Choice Summer Male Artist
None of these moaning weirdos are very summery? I mean, it seems like none of these people make particularly summery music. Liam Payne, I guess? Maybe?
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Liam Payne, under the circumstances.
Choice Summer Female Artist
This category, on the other hand, is nothing but summer folks. Of course, the only one that makes music worth listening to is Cardi B, but hey, it’s a start.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Cardi B
Choice Summer Song
I kind of like this Liam Payne song (which is why he won above), but that’s also largely because of J. Balvin. Still and all, got to move through these quickly.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Liam Payne & J. Balvin, “Familiar”
Choice Rock/Alternative Song
I swear to kevin, this category gets worse every single year.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Alice Merton, “No Roots”
Choice R&B/Hip-Hop Song
“This is America” definitely had the best video (about which you can hear more next week, because SUMMER AWARDS SEASON, Y’ALL), but was not a particularly good song divorced from said video. So that leaves us with “All the Stars.”
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Kendrick Lamar & SZA, “All the Stars”
Choice Latin Song
Earlier I liked “Familiar” best, but it turns out it’s not even the best J. Balvin song in this category. And so it goes.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: J. Balvin & Willy William, “Mi Gente”
Choice Electronic/Dance Song
Man, say what you will about the genre/combination of similar genres that yielded this category, they found the formula. Listening to all of these in a row is a real interesting “theme and variations” effect. I recommend it. Not that any of them are good, but hey, we’re past that point.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Marshmello & Ann-Marie, “Friends”
Choice Country Song
God help me, the best of these songs is the Carrie Underwood song. What is the world coming to?
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Carrie Underwood, “Cry Pretty”
Choice Pop Song
I know that it’s the “complain about the nominees” section of the thing, but the music selections here are particularly terrible, with this category especially seeming very, very much like what an old person thinks teenagers are into. Or “teens” as the title would have it. Anyway.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: It is, unfortunately, Keala Settle, “This is Me”
“Pray For Me” barely passes muster as a The Weeknd song, and certainly doesn’t rate very highly as a Kendrick song, and is still the best of the things in this category.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: The Weeknd & Kendrick Lamar, “Pray for Me”
Choice Song: Group
I like the idea of Why Don’t We. Just take the “best” parts of a bunch of also-ran boy bands and try to Frankenstein them together (as in, behave like the scientist Frankenstein by combining dead parts into a would-be living thing, not the monster, who is not named Frankenstein. Thank you in advance for not “correcting” me), and see what happens! I mean, the music is terrible and the whole approach insulting, but I can’t help but admire the moxy.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Why Don’t We, “Trust Fund Baby”
Choice Song: Female Artist
Despite the fact that Young Thug is not a female artist, the best of these songs is “Havana”. I hate having to break my own rules like this, but I don’t find myself with a bunch of other options. So there.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Camila Cabella, “Havana” (f Young Thug)
Choice Song: Male Artist
It’s fortunate we’re still working songs from DAMN. through the awards cycle, otherwise I’d have to take back all the stuff I said about “This is America” a minute ago.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Kendrick Lamar, “LOVE” (f Zacari)
Choice International Artist
Three of these are South Korean boy bands, including the titans of the form BTS. One is a South Korean girl band, with the fantastic name Black Pink, and the fifth is a Mexican boy band. I feel like I am completely unable to evaluate any of this.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Black Pink. It’s a great name
Choice Next Big Thing
I feel like if I got the next big things and the breakout artists lined up just right then we’d have an idea of where a sort of “famous pop person” Rubicon was, and that would be a useful tool for humanity.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Jackson Wang
Choice Breakout Artist
How many times is Logic going to have to “Break Out” before we, as an awards-granting public, admit that the dude is well and truly broken out? HOW MANY TIMES, FOX?
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Logic (?!)
Choice Rock Artist
I have said before, and I will say again: if Twenty One Pilots had happened when I was a young person, I would 100% have gone for their thing. I mean, I don’t now, but I can see where it would have landed, and I can appreciate that they’re out there doing it.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Twenty One Pilots
Choice R&B/Hip-Hop Artist
I feel like, despite their repeated insistence that there is nothing between them, the choice of Cardi B vs. Nicki Minaj says a lot about a person. They both make enjoyable music, but everything else about their…thing is superficially similar but fundamentally opposite. I should write some more about this some time.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Nicki Minaj
Choice Latin Artist
I think I’ve made it pretty clear wher I come down here.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: J. Balvin
Choice Electronic/Dance Artist
So the problem all up and down here is that there are a billion permutations on the categories, and only a tiny handful of people up for nomination, so here you have basically the same category yet again. It’s a terrible way to run a railroad, and I have no idea what the advantage to having such a relatively-small pool of nominees is. On its face it’s to maximize the exposure to things that Fox has a business interest in (this will come up again during the movies categories), but I would think that still would leave some more options here.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Calvin Harris, I guess.
Choice Country Artist
Are these people mad at Kacey Musgraves? I mean, leaving aside any of the other better practitioners of the form, are they mad at Kacey Musgraves? It seems like they’re mad at Kacey Musgraves, is what I’m saying.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: I mean….Kacey Musgraves? She’s not even nominated though. She should be. She’s the rightful winner. Somebody get the Teen Choice Awards people on the phone.
Choice Music Group
Choice Country Music Group! Choice Summer Music Group! Choice Male Music Group! Choice Hottie Music Group! Choice Action Music Group! Choice Electronic Music Group!
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Migos
Choice Female Artist
Once again, the only one of these artists that made more than one song in the last year that is actively better than having a hole drilled in your head is Cardi B.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Cardi B
Choice Male Artist
If my point has not been made, and my joy at leaving the music categories behind not made plain, this category comes down to two former members of One Direction, neither of whom was one of the Good Ones.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Niall Horan
Choice Hissy Fit
You know, despite all of my misgivings about Jack Black playing a teenage girl, and how that would be handled, I genuinely enjoyed it, and most of all I liked his hissy fit. Good job, dude.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Jack Black, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Chadwick Boseman & Lupita Nyong’o, Black Panther
Choice Scene Stealer
It’s hard to beat Tom Hiddleston’s Loki in terms of pure scene-stealingness. That didn’t stop Taika Waititi from doing so in the same movie, but, y’know, it was probably hard.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Taika Waititi, Thor: Ragnarok
Choice TV Ship
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Stephen Amell & Emily Bett Rickards, Arrow
Choice Summer TV Sta
I know this isn’t quite the place for this kind of rumination, but I don’t know when or if I’ll have a closer-to-appropriate chance, since this isn’t the sort of thing that warrants its own post: Cloak and Dagger was a seriously-weird comic book, and just about the last thing that I would’ve expected to be adapted into a television series, y’know? It’s just deeply surreal that it even happened in the first place. The things that people try to bring back from the nineties continue to be truly bizarre to me.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Eh, what the hell, Olivia Holt, Cloak and Dagger
Choice Summer TV Show
I mean, I guess it would’ve been slightly more appropriate in this category than the other one, I guess?
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: So You Think You Can Dance
Choice Breakout TV Star
I think Oliver Stark deserves praise not only for being just fine on 9-1-1, but also for making it into the cast of a Ryan Murphy show without looking like every other dude in a Ryan Murphy show (although so did Peter Krause, so maybe the 9-1-1 casting directive is something slightly different).
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Oliver Stark
Choice Breakout TV Show
To be honest, 9-1-1 is the only one of these I’ve spent any real significant time with, but I’m so charmed by the utter baffling thoughtlessness of a grim ‘n’ gritty reboot of Anne of Double Gs that I can’t help but think Anne With an E is a real winner here.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Anne With an E
Choice TV Villain
On the one hand, I did not like the second season of Stranger Things. To boot: their mind flayer was not actually the nightmare-inducing horror of an actual Dungeons & Dragons mind flayer. The name, however, is still plenty scary. And monsters are better villains than non-monsters, generally.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: The Mind Flayer, Stranger Things
Choice TV Personality
I want to qualify this: I think that DJ Khaled is, on the whole, a negative presence in the world, if only because he’s so willing to be a one-note caricature of himself. But The Four, which I could and might write at length about the utterly insane existence of, is also terrible, and over the course of its run (especially its second season), DJ Khaled showed the cracks in his caricaturing and was, at several points, legitimately entertaining as a grown-ass man who has to play this character under those circumstances. He was legitimately funny, especially as he got more bored. So it’s DJ Khaled, but only under these very highly-qualified circumstances.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: DJ Khaled
Choice Throwback TV Show
We can agree that on a largely-useless awards show with a lot of largely-useless categories, this one kind of takes the cake, right? I think we can agree on that.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Uh…..I guess I think That 70s Show is the best of these?
Choice Reality TV Show
So, as hinted at earlier, despite the fact that all of these shows are terrible (pour ome out for the last couple of seasons of Masterchef: Junior, guys, it used to be a good show), there is a really captivating trainwreck quality to The Four that I can’t really put it into words. It is somehow a reality show that isn’t even pretending that the whole thing is under the control of a handful of producers who are very carefully managing the artists in question, and choosing to expose them in a very specific way. Anyway. It’s crazy how much the machinations of the show are just out in the open, is what I’m saying, and that makes it more interesting to watch than it would be otherwise. More interesting than The Voice, certainly. Also, it is worth noting that American Idol isn’t here at all, because Fox gave that one up (although that does not stop Andy Samberg from appearing in the “Choice Comedy Actor” category). So there.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: The Four: Battle for Stardom
Choice Animated TV Show
Man, kids these days. They get the best damn cartoons.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Rick and Morty
Choice Comedy TV Actress
Kristen Bell is the lead of the best show on the air, so she is the one here.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Kristen Bell, The Good Place
Choice Comedy TV Actor
So, despite the fact that The Good Place is the best show on the air, I notice that Ted Danson, William Jackson Harper and, most especially (and most criminally) Manny Jacinto are not in this category. That is terrible, and they should not be terrible.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Andy Samberg, Brooklyn Nine Nine
Choice Comedy TV Show
The Good Place is the best show on the air, so it is the one here.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: The Good Place
Choice Action TV Actress
I continue to be impressed that the Supergirl folks found Melissa Benoist, and it continues to be her that I think should win these categories.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Melissa Benoist, Supergirl
Choice Action TV Actor
I can’t always explain my affection for Lucas Till. I always like him. Hell, I liked Monster Trucks. I don’t much like MacGyver, but for whatever reason have decided this is not his fault.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Lucas Till, MacGyver
Choice Action TV Show
My praise for individual acting preferences aside, this is all pretty awful. I mean, I get why people like some of it, so we’re at least in a significantly better class of “awful” than the music categories, but still: awful.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Arrow
Choice Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actress
iZombie isn’t the show it started as, that’s for sure, but Rose McIver still does a bang-up job meeting a pretty rigorous set of acting challenges, so why not?
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Rose McIver, iZombie
Choice Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor
I’m not so heartless that I can’t still throw my lot in behind Gaten Matarazzo.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Gaten Matarazzo, Stranger Things
Choice Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Show
I guess it’s iZombie? I think The 100 is also fine. I don’t know guys.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: iZombie?
Choice Drama TV Actress
Did you guys know that The Fosters (a show I only really heard about because it was being cancelled) had run for five goddamn seasons? I guess they weren’t telling old people about that one. Anyway, I like Camila Mendes just fine I suppose.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Camila Mendes, Riverdale
Choice Drama TV Actor
Hey I don’t have to say the thing about Jughead again! At least this category isn’t a romance category. Assholes. Oh also, there’s no way that people think Freddie Highmore is a good actor, right? Like, it’s because they like the show, not because they like him?
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Sterling K. Brown, This is Us
Choice Drama TV Show
I appreciate the people at Fox’s valiant attempt to pretend that Famous in Love is beloved by anyone, let alone young people. I think that sort of delusional attitude is necessary in the television industry.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: The Fosters
Choice Movie Ship
I’m pretty sure that announcing Sopia Lillis & Jeremy Ray Taylor as a ship is a minor spoiler for the second movie in the series (where the two do end up together), but hey, I’ll go with it.\
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Sophia Lillis & Jeremy Ray Taylor, It
Choice Summer Movie Actress
Zazie Beetz is all things wonderful. She managed to make Domino seem like a character worth having in a movie.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Zazie Beetz, Domino
Choice Summer Movie Actor
Whatever Solo’s flaws were, whatever effect it may have had on the long-term Star Wars plans of Disney, whatever may have contributed to this on or off screen, none of those things are Donald Glover’s portrayal of Lando Calrissian. Also, I can’t say that I did entirely on purpose, but I’m pretty happy that, even in an awards show with no Atlanta, the best people are still the cast of Atlanta.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Donald Glover, Solo
Choice Summer Movie
You know how I had a bunch of stuff to say round about the last Jurassic World movie about how it worked well as meta-fiction and not at all as fiction, but I liked it anyway? I don’t really have any of that stuff to say this time.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: The Incredibles 2
Choice Breakout Movie Star
I say this not as a contrarian, but as a simply opinion-farmer with many opinions about Star Wars: Kelly Marie Tran, and Rose Tico, are the best part of the movie (and their key scene on Canto Bight), and without them the movie’s theme and entire purpose would have been missing. So there.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Kelly Marie Tran, Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Choice Movie Villain
“Ah,” thought I, “this one is easy. Nothing will top Cate Blanchett in Thor:Ragnarok” and then I remembered: Michael B. Jordan walks this Earth.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Michael B. Jordan, Black Panther
Choice Comedy Movie Actress
Several of these women are capable of being funny. The only one of them that was at all funny in the thing they were nominated for was Karen Gillan. I’m beginning to suspect that maybe me and the Teen Choice Awards people do not like any of the same things, guys!
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Karen Gillan, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Choice Comedy Movie Actor
As mentioned earlier, I had some misgivings about Jack Black’s character in Jumanji, but he did a good job, and I’m comfortable calling him the funniest part of the movie.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Jack Black, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Choice Comedy Movie
I am really coming out for Jumanji here. It’s not because I loved it, it’s because I don’t even remotely like any of the rest of these things.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Choice Drama Movie Actress
Well, Fox’s business associations have finally yielded something worth awarding. I suppose I don’t actually have that much to say about Lady Bird, which is going to make the next few categories rather quite and repetitive. Like the comedy movie categories only with more suburban ennui.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird
Choice Drama Movie Actor
Especially in the acting categories here it seems like Lady Bird is the only actual performance-driven movie here.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Timothee Chalamet, Lady Bird
Choice Drama Movie
Oh wait, A Quiet Place made this category and not the other ones? What the hell, Fox!
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: A Quiet Place
Choice Fantasy Movie Actress
Pretty hard not to go the obvious route here. RIP, Princess Leia.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Carrie Fisher, Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Choice Fantasy Movie Actor
I mean, Luke Skywalker’s ending was as good as any character’s ending in anything.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Mark Hamill, Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Choice Fantasy Movie
I choose to make no secret of the fact that I unreservedly love The Last Jedi, even if I am writing on the internet for all to say. Love it. Love it from tip to tail. Super excited ot see what Rian Johnson does with it after JJ Abrams is finished.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Choice Sci-Fi Movie Actress
I’m not opposed to it being one of the many people here nominated from Black Panther, obviously, but Tessa Thompson was still better.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Tessa Thompson, Thor: Ragnarok
Choice Sci-Fi Movie Actor
Chadwick Boseman was so good that I don’t think the rightful winner is Ryan Gosling!
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Chadwick Boseman, Black Panther
Choice Sci-Fi Movie
Boy, Black Panther vs Thor: Ragnarok is a real debate for the ages. If I could’ve gotten half this many good things (i.e. one. Half of two is one.) in most of these categories I’d be a lot happier with all of this. But in the end, my heart belongs with thing that is the most weird and the most funny. And I always liked Thor better than Black Panther as comics anyway.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Thor: Ragnarok
Choice Action Movie Actress
There are lots of things to be said for both Gal Gadot and Amy Adams’s respective jobs in Justice League. But, y’know, the movie itself is terrible.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Zoe Saldana, Avengers: Infinity War
Choice Action Movie Actor
I continue to think that Tom Holland’s Spider-Man is the best of all possible Spider-Mans.
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Tom Holland, Avengers: Infinity War
Choice Action Movie
You know, one of these years I really am going to put some effort into figuring out what the genre distinctions for superhero movies here are. I guess Thor: Ragnarok is science fiction (and somehow not fantasy) because it takes place in space? Which makes it weireder that Star Wars is in the fantasy part? I don’t know how any of this works, guys. Avengers: Infinity War has robots, spaceships, lazorz, all of it. I mean, it is also an action movie. And a good one!
THE RIGHTFUL WINNER: Avengers: Infinity War