6 Classic Kanye Freakouts

After his VMA dustup with Taylor Swift, Kanye West apologized on Leno’s new show. Watch these videos to see how he stacks up against other after-dark mea culpas.

The Precursor: the 2006 European VMAs

At the 2006 MTV Europe Music Awards in Copenhagen, Kanye took home the award for Best Hip-Hop Artist. But that wasn’t enough for the self-proclaimed world’s best rapper. After Justice and Simian won Best Video for “We Are Your Friends,” West crashed the stage with an “Aw, hell naw!” claiming, “If I don’t win, the award show loses credibility.” Amidst his typically expletive-filled rant, Kanye backed his “Touch the Sky” video’s superiority claiming it “cost a million dollars,” “had Pam Anderson,” and because he was “jumping across canyons and shit.”

More MTV Chaos in 2007

Kanye continued to prove himself the John McEnroe of awards shows during another meltdown that occurred backstage at MTV’s 2007 Video Music Awards in Las Vegas. Annoyed that other singers appeared onstage while he performed in his hotel suite, West yells that he’s “never coming back to MTV.” Sadly, he did not keep that promise, as this year’s show demonstrates, but went on to say the channel won’t “give a black man a chance.”

A Bad Moment for Doing Good

On September 2, 2005, just days after Hurricane Katrina, Kanye was among the dozens of celebrities to participate in “A Concert for Hurricane Relief.” With Mike Myers by his side, the rapper laid into another racially charged address, closing with the now infamous line “George Bush doesn’t care about black people,” leaving a visibly mortified Myers to awkwardly deliver the number to call for donations.

Kanye Perfects the Pre-Award Show Freakout

Not many artists issue a warning before an award show. But not many are Kanye West: Here’s West before the 2008 Grammy Awards, telling viewers if he doesn’t win Album of the Year, “I’m going to have a problem with that.” The rant ends with West playing the role of both himself and his enemies in a heated dialogue.

Now It’s Not Funny: West at the 2009 VMAs

You can’t watch this enough: Here’s Kanye going too far even by his standards, ruining the moment for Taylor Swift.

Kanye as a Gay Fish

During an April 2009 episode of South Park, an animated Kanye West in a low-cut tank and gold chain failed to understand that if you put fish sticks in your mouth, you must be a gay fish. A Kanye-esque track was used for the hilarious music video about his true identity as a big gay fish. Later, on his blog, Kanye defended his honor saying: I’M NOT ACTUALLY A HUGE DOUCHE.

Get The Beast In Your Inbox!

Daily Digest

Start and finish your day with the top stories from The Daily Beast.

Cheat Sheet

A speedy, smart summary of all the news you need to know (and nothing you don't).

By clicking “Subscribe,” you agree to have read the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
Thank You!
You are now subscribed to the Daily Digest and Cheat Sheet. We will not share your email with anyone for any reason.

Xtra Insight: Choire Sicha: Leave Kanye Alone