Move over, Miley: Your foam finger has been upstaged!
At least that seems to be the sentiment from many concerned parents Sunday night, who took to social media to express displeasure at the 2014 Grammy Awards' opening number: A risque turn from pop superstar Beyoncé.
The show, which aired at 8 p.m. ET/PT, started off dramatically right off the bat with the singer's steamy rendition of her new single "Drunk in Love." There were several PG-13 elements to the performance, including Bey's twerking and chair-straddling moves; however, it seemed that her outfit — a semi-sheer thong-style bodysuit that showed plenty of legs and, well, booty — seemed to cause the most uproar.
Watching the #GRAMMYs at 8pm with my children(music lovers) performance by Beyoncé and her lack of clothing very inappropriate, shes a mom?— Maria Sanz❤ (@MariaSanz) January 27, 2014
Beyonce seriously? Its 8:00. That performance was NOT appropriate for children. Thank God mine are in bed. #shameonyou— Theresa Bailey (@theresabrenelle) January 27, 2014
Parents weren't happy about her husband's contribution to the segment, either. Although the audience roared in approval when rapper Jay Z joined his wife on stage — and the pair engaged in a steamy, clearly-in-love duet — some eyebrows were raised when he slid a hand down to pat Beyoncé's scantily clad derriere.
I dont care how supposedly amazing Beyonce & Jay Z's relationship is, I found his public butt grabbing oh sooooo disrespectful. #GRAMMYs— Lola George (@lolajgeorge) January 27, 2014
OK, folks. We realize the butt-patting may have been a little too much, but we have to say: The two are married, and as we all know, parents themselves (Jay Z even gave a sweet shout-out to daughter Blue Ivy later that evening when accepting his award for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration: "Daddy got a gold sippy cup for you!").
There are worse things than seeing a happy couple engaging in some PDA, right? And Lord (not Lorde, who was conservatively clad) knows, we've all seen our share of skimpy gear on the Grammy stage.
However, Melissa Henson, director of grassroots activism and education for the conservative watchdog Parents Television Council, does believe that parental concern regarding the performance is justifiable. In fact, she believes many families are fed up enough to not even allow their children to watch awards shows at all.
"We have seen pretty consistently enough inappropriate material [on awards shows lately], that a lot of parents have written these off," she explains. "When I was a kid, these shows were a big deal, and we could watch them without any fear of inappropriate material. But unfortunately I think those days are gone."
Henson points out that Beyoncé's bodysuit probably wasn't much more revealing than the one she wore for her halftime performance at last year's Super Bowl. "But the dancing on the chair was suggestive," she notes, adding that pop culture's appropriation of "pornographic" suggestions is what's troubling parents the most.
Some fans, though, didn't cite virgin eyes and impressionable minds as their main concern. As one viewer put it, she was simply disappointed in what seemed to be Beyoncé's unnecessary choice to tart up her talent.