MTV Launches Reboot of ‘Total Request Live,’ Forgets to Play Music Videos
MTV’s flagship show of the ‘90s, Total Request Live, re-debuted yesterday (Oct. 2) after being off the air for nine years. Of course, we didn’t expect the good ol’ days, but we were stunned when the reboot of TRL didn’t play a single music video during its return broadcast.
Not. One. Video. So what are people going to request every day? Instead of a music video countdown show, viewers were shown a variety of different segments. After a moment of silence for the victims of the Las Vegas shooting, DJ Khaled sat down on a white throne and doled out “wisdom” with some “Major Key Motivation.”
Later in the broadcast, YouTuber Liza Koshy went down to the streets of Times Square to see how many people she could get to twerk with her in just one minute. Eighteen seconds into the “challenge,” MTV straight-up ditched the countdown clock since nobody wanted to twerk with Koshy. Eventually, one audience member gave in and the segment was able to end mercifully.
Total Request Live’s reboot did feature some live music, as Ed Sheeran and Migos both performed live. Also, longtime host Carson Daly made an “appearance” via photograph when Migos was challenged to identify the individual, which he got correct.
Online publications haven’t been too kind to the new TRL, with Entertainment Weekly calling it “terrible” and Vanity Fair calling out the show for not mentioning Tom Petty although the news of his hospitalization broke roughly halfway through the broadcast. However, Billboard praised Ed Sheeran’s two performances.
Could Total Request Live actually work for today’s smartphone generation? We’ll see what happens, but as of now, the video countdown format seems to be nowhere in MTV’s plans.