On Sunday, MTV held the European Music Awards and, big surprise, Miley did a thing and now people are talking about (and yes, that includes us somewhat begrudgingly). Specifically, while on stage to accept an award for her music video for "Wrecking Ball," she pulled out what Deadline calls "a suspicious-looking cigarette that many have identified as a joint" and proceeded to smoke it on stage. The awards were held in Amsterdam, so, you know, nudge nudge wink wink.
The story would end there, except that a pop star publicly using drugs at a televised, MTV-sanctioned event aimed at a teen audience isn't going to go over well with advertisers and advocacy groups. The FCC does not define smoking as indecent behavior (obviously; see: Mad Men), so MTV faces more of a publicity problem than an indecency one.
In the time between when the awards were handed out in Europe and when they were broadcast in America, MTV edited out the moment. So now nobody will ever know about it. If things don't happen on television, they might as well have never happened at all.
TMZ has video of the unedited version, and Deadline has its awkwardly abridged counterpart. MTV parent company Viacom is currently performing its post-award show ritual of yanking clips off YouTube. Here's a video taken by someone in the crowd.
The network can't have been caught completely off guard, though. Leading up to the show, they specifically asked, in promos, “How Wild Will Miley Get At The EMAs?” Guess they got their answer.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.