After watching London’s Opening Ceremony, I immediately began wondering how Kanye West would do the whole thing. Ye has his hands in everything nowadays—art, fashion, music, sports, television, movies—so I wouldn’t put a Kanye directed Ceremony past anybody. Here’s how it would go down:
The negotiation process to get Kanye to direct the games would legendary. He’d demand a budget of at least $500 million for the concert. London Olympics organizers would remind him that it’s not a concert, that China spent $70 million on their Opening Ceremony, and that no, Austin Powers is a fictional character. After agreeing to direct the show for a lush sponsorship package (DONDA would be the official sponsor of the entire Olympics. Even though DONDA lacks a logo and any real products, it just would be.)
Working with a measly $15 million, Kanye would conceptualize, plan, organize, rehearse, and create the entire Ceremony in 3 days. After determining that $15 million isn’t enough, he doubles the ticket prices of the Ceremony, and contributes $30 million of his own money (most of which he wrangles from Def Jam) to offset the now $50 million budget.
London organizers repeatedly ask for outlines of the show, but Kanye points out his “Kanye Kontrol Klause” (short-sightedly abbreviated as “KKK”). The KKK allows Kanye to work in total secrecy. He makes no promises to pay homage to the United Kingdom, the games themselves, or the international community watching. He declares that “I’m universal” when pressed on the matter.
The show starts in total darkness. Everyone in the audience, including international broadcasters, would be asked to remain totally silent. (Matt Lauer would ignore these directions.) A singular light shines upon one man standing on a massive, white circular stage. He’s a Black man wearing a Horus mask dripping in gold. Faux Horus is also wearing the $100,000 Horus chain that Kanye wore in 2010 to perpetuate his greatness. Horus begins to fly, and as the audience tracks him into the dark of the London night, the white circle stage disappears. An all-black pyramid emerges from the ground, flanked by a 7-screen movie setup. This instantly causes a problem, because half of the stadium cannot see what’s happening on the screen. The trailer for Cruel Summer plays, and the screens explode. Beneath the pyramid, a clear-glass bottom surface has emerged.
It quickly becomes clear that the glass surface is actually a giant in-ground aquarium. Great white sharks swim throughout, eating the carcases of dead male Lions. The moment first blood is drawn, aggressive “Love Lockdown”-like drums pound away. Hundreds of ballerinas dressed like 1850s-era African-American slave women emerge from the pyramid as the drums continue to roll. They begin some stupid routine. A man representing Nat Turner breaks the glass aquarium, climbs to the stage, and shoots a make-believe Ronald Reagan character in the head.
(At this point, everyone—Black, White, Asian, Purple, English, Young Money—is offended.)
The ballerinas all suddenly swoop towards the middle of the stage. They huddle up, chant some wild nonsense, and when they break, Kanye appears dead-center. He’s wearing nothing but a Givenchy loin-cloth, with the letters “KW” embroidered on his crotch, and “DONDA” on his ass cheeks. He begins pounding away on an MPC, using samples from the Inception soundtrack.
Giant floats of great African-Americans cruise around the stage. The heads of Nat Turner, Dred Scott, Booker T. Washington, Frederick Douglass, Malcolm X, MLK, Carter Woodson, Muhammed Ali, Jackie Robinson, Fred Hampton, Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye, Basquiat, Michael Jordan, Steve Urkel, Michael Jackson, Will Smith, Oprah, Obama, and Black Jesus parade around. All hope of the Ceremony having anything to do with the UK, the Olympics, or the world is now lost.
Jay-Z, dressed in a suit, rides onto the stage on the back of Tinie Tempah (who’s crawling on the ground). Kanye and Jay perform that song about African Americans In Paris. After performing the song 30 times (finally, the Olympics are referenced. This is the 30th Olympiad after all), the Queen joins them on stage. All three pop bottles of champagne, spraying the bubbly on Prince Harry, the Olsen Twins, and Sir Paul McCartney. “Twist and Shout” by the Beatles plays, and everyone on stage (including the Queen) is suddenly wearing a leopard print vest. Horribly awkward dancing ensues. Kanye smashes his bottle on Mr. Hudson’s head, and screams “I AM KANYE WEST, AND I AM NOT MAKING HISTORY. I AM HISTORY,” before the whole stage goes dark.
The Ye-lmypics have now begun.
Follow Justin on Twitter @jblock49