First off — Happy New Year! The 42nd Annual Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve 2014 with Ryan Seacrest on ABC features an extensive run of celebrity performances and interviews leading up to the famous Times Square ball drop midnight in New York. It also features the longest title of any ongoing annual television special.
Here’s a rundown of all the awkward moments and performances that you may have missed during your NYE festivities:
8:00-10:00 p.m. ET: I foolishly miss Icona Pop and Blondie’s performance during New Year’s Rockin’ Eve Presents The 30 Greatest Women In Music while setting up my New Year’s essentials station. The New Year’s essentials station consists mostly of adult beverages and peanuts for protein. According to the collective Twitter consciousness, Icona Pop did pretty well especially with backup dancers dressed like Alex and his droogs from A Clockwork Orange — I don’t care; I love it. However, Blondie’s performance was…well, let’s just say, I’m not too bothered that I missed watching it live. In case you were also deep in New Year’s party prep, check out the performances here:
10:00 p.m.: Rockin’ Eve Primetime officially kicks off with news that the temperature at Times Square feels like 2o degrees Fahrenheit. This year, just like every other year, we get our never-ending updates about how cold it really is. At least Ryan Seacrest and his crew are consistent.
10:02 p.m.: In a running bit that didn’t really work, Jenny McCarthy speculates on who she’s going to kiss at midnight this year. She wants to kiss Time’s Man of the Year because “the Pope is dope.” Ugh.
10:06 p.m.: Seacrest lists some of the words Americans found most annoying this year including shutdown, gridlock, and fiscal cliff. But according to a mysterious, unnamed poll, Seacrest states the most annoying word this year for Americans was “whatever.” Whatever.
10:07 p.m.: Daughtry returns to pop culture relevance with a
live recorded performance in Hollywood as a preview to Rockin’ Eve Part 2. They play their new song, “Waiting for Superman,” not to be confused with other Superman-themed alt-rock tunes “Kryptonite” and “Superman (It’s Not Easy).” Why aren’t there mid-tempo alternative rock songs about other superheroes? I’d definitely listen to a 3 Doors Down’s ballad about Squirrel Girl.
10:12 p.m.: ”I am so excited that I think I’m higher than that ball right now,” exclaims McCarthy, inadvertently explaining a lot of things.
10:18 p.m.: Decked out in an all-black suit, leather gloves, and shades, Pitbull performs a medley of his bilingual hits live in Miami. Although he stumbles on “Timber” sans Ke$ha, there’s plenty of pantless dancers to compensate.
10:24 p.m.: Pitbull remembers to thank King Seacrest, who responds with an awkward “Dale!”
10:35 p.m.: McCarthy checks in with Pharrel and his hat, who are hosting the Foutainebleau Miami Beach party. The prestige may be in Times Square, but I have a feeling that whoever hosts the Miami party is the real winner. It’s warm. The party is at a gorgeous hotel. Plus, partygoers get to celebrate the New Year in the same time zone as Times Square. But enough about the Miami portion of the broadcast, McCarthy now needs to tell us that her son was conceived in Miami. Great, thanks. That’s just the information I was missing to ring in 2014.
10:37 p.m.: Macklemore and Ryan Lewis hit the stage for a double shot of “Thrift Shop” and “Can’t Hold Us.” (Fact: You can say “honky” and “piss” on national TV.) Macklemore throws his poncho and red sneaks into the crowd. I’m sure they can use ‘em since it’s really cold. It’s really cold, guys! Did you know it’s really cold?! Macklemore, Ryan Lewis, Wanz, and Ray Dalton are on point, but the brass needs a little work to stay in tune. (Granted, it is really cold.) At least the group finally captures the energy we want out of a New Year’s Eve celebration.
10:43 p.m.: A big year for Macklemore…and selfie. Seacrest is not only the new King of Rockin’ Eve but also of the Awkward Segue. McCarthy wants to replace the “duck face,” often seen in selfies, with something called “smiling.” So why is she opening her mouth like she’s auditioning for Sharknado 2: The Second One?
10:49 p.m.: Robin Thicke performs his massive 2013 hit, “Blurred Lines” in Hollywood. He saunters into the crowd of mostly ladies and sings/sings over his track to them. He may not be doing much of it right now, but you have to admit, the man can sing.
10:54 p.m.: Miley Cyrus makes her debut in a gold crop top, matching pants, and white fur coat, accompanied by her “Sexy Sexies.” She starts talking about how nervous she is, but all I can hear is Vanessa Bayer as Cyrus repeating “It’s pretty cool” over and over again. Ryan welcomes her and her homies. No seriously, he greets them with a “Homies, welcome.”
10:58 p.m.: Seacrest checks in with Fergie on the West Coast, who is rocking an I Dream of Genie braid and a double-breasted blazer. She looks pretty fierce.
11:00 p.m.: Time for the local news a.k.a. time to switch over to Kathy Griffin’s shenanigans and Anderson Cooper’s surprised faces on CNN. One hour to go!
11:30 p.m.: Ryan Seacrest returns saying that 2014 is so close ”you can almost taste it.” This, of course, is a perfect segue to Miley Cyrus’ tongue.
11:31 p.m.: McCarthy boasts that the Times Square crowd consists of people from all over the world. They hail all the way from Long Island, San Franscisco, and Westhampton!
11:39 p.m.: Miley Cyrus and her Sexy Sexies perform “#GETITRIGHT.” She’s definitely not lip-synching. Starting off shaky, she hits her stride with the more recognizable, mega-hit power ballad, “Wrecking Ball.”
11:43 p.m.: Jenny McCarthy licking a hammer a la the “Wrecking Ball” music video is an image I could have lived without.
11:56 p.m.: We’re back with Seacrest now joined by Miley Cyrus again, Debbie Harry, Macklemore, and Ryan Lewis. Debbie Harry doesn’t have a New Year’s resolution, responding to Seacrest’s question with a “Heaven forbid!” and a laugh.
11:58 p.m.: Wait. Melissa Etheridge is performing John Lennon’s “Imagine.” Why aren’t we watching that instead of listening to Jenny McCarthy talk gibberish?
11:59 p.m.: Justice Sonia Sotomayor, a New York native, officially rings in the New Year and presses the ceremonial button for the Times Square Ball drop.
Midnight: HAPPY NEW YEAR! Times Square lights up with fireworks! I drink champagne! Jenny McCarthy and Donnie Wahlberg make out!
12:15 a.m.: Billy Joel finishes crooning to a packed stadium,which I’m sure was fantastic. I couldn’t hear it over my mom’s unrelenting comments about how “awful he looks.”
12:25 a.m.: Seacrest is now inside and looking quite dapper in a tuxedo. He looks more at home inside his temperature-controlled studio/throne room.
12:26 a.m.: Jenny dresses up like Miley Cyrus’ tongue and alludes to it being dirty. I am at a loss for words.
12:27 a.m.: Hollywood takes over the musical duties, starting off with (singing) Jason Derulo. Derulo fills our Chris Brown-circa-2008 void as he shows off not only his singing but his pop-and-locking in “The Other Side.”
12:31 a.m.: Capitol Cities’ “Safe and Sound” “lifts” me up as I go “fill” my cup to make it through the rest of the night.
12:39 a.m.: Jenny McCarthy and Donnie Wahlberg fondle each other as McCarthy’s producer beat boxes.
12:40 a.m.: “Maybe I should produce that,” Ryan quips, joking that McCarthy and Wahlberg should star in their own reality show. It’s funny because it’s not farfetched at all. McCarthy and Wahlberg can’t seem to get their hands off one another, which is sweet, but also a bit much.
12:41 a.m.: Ariana Grande and Big Sean sing and rap, respectively, on “Right There.” Grande wears a black glitter bustier attached with a skirt made out of leftover Christmas bows. It’s adequately risqué for a pop star who is still has a Nickelodeon show. But there’s a reason why even my grandparents know who Miley Cyrus is and not Ariana Grande.
12:47 a.m.: The Fray plays “How to Save A Life” because it’s ABC and it’s practically Grey’s Anatomy’s theme song.
12:51 a.m.: King Seacrest is still holding down the fort in Times Square despite the crowd quickly dissipating. Back in Hollywood, Florida Georgia Line performs “Round Here.” Country may not be my personal favorite, but I do think it’s cool that a country duo features a band with a mohawk-ed guitarist and a Pitbull impersonator for a drummer.
12:56 a.m.: Fall Out Boy’s ”My Songs Know What You Did In the Dark (Light Em Up)” may be a relatively new track, but it gives me major middle school nostalgia. My 13-year-old self says they kill it on stage.
1:00 a.m.: Enrique Iglesias lip synchs to his latest club track “Heart Attack.” Forget the song — I’m captivated by his face. Has he aged at all? People talk about Keanu Reeves being immortal, but conspiracy theorists should devote their attention to Iglesias instead.
1:06 a.m.: King Seacrest has officially performed his royal duty and is finally ready for his annual sleep. (Yes, he sleeps once a year.) With “Seacrest out!” that marks the start of —
1:09 a.m.: Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve ‘14 with Ryan Seacrest: Part 2 introducing all of the acts that have already performed! The title of this portion of the show should technically be called, Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve ‘14 with Ryan Seacrest: Part 2 with Fergie.
1:10 a.m.: Robin Thicke sticks to the keys for “Feel Good.” But he feels too good to stay put and jumps on top of the piano.
1:17 a.m.: Fall Out Boy returns to play their latest anthem single, ”Alone Together.” Fall Out Boy may be enjoying a great live music moment, but I’m starting fade and get sleepy. Is this what it feels like to get old?
1:22 a.m.: Fergie sweetly introduces Jason Derulo with talk of his proposal to girlfriend and fellow singer Jordin Sparks — which makes Derulo’s breathless performance of “Talk Dirty” featuring lyrics like “ménage à three-o” all the more awkward.
1:29 a.m.: Florida Georgia Line is back with “Stay.” Mohawk guy delivers the song’s ubiquitous guitar solo. But, there are so many guitars on stage; I’m not really sure what’s going on anymore.
1:33 a.m.: Fergie lists an exhaustive number of countries where Daughtry has toured in an effort to ensure skeptical American audiences that Daughtry is a really big deal, guys. But you don’t have to sell me — I voted extensively for Chris Daughtry on American Idol back in 2006.
1:42 a.m.: Is it just me or is Fergie affecting a British accent in her introduction to Capitol Cities’ “I Sold My Bed, Not My Stereo”? Unlike Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, their brass section is in tune (and inside), thereby knocking out another solid showing.
1:50 a.m.: Jason Derulo is back. This time he sings about every third word, focusing his waning energies on his dance moves rather than actually singing a medley of his biggest hits. Nonetheless, he makes his wobbly climb up the L-shaped pyramid of backup dancers for his grand finale.
1:54 p.m.: Fall Out Boy makes their third appearance with a rollicking rendition of “Young Volcanoes.”
2:02 a.m.: The Fray also returns with their latest single, “Love Don’t Die.” It’s an adequate production, but where are The Vampire Diaries’ — and Joe King’s fiancé — Candice Accola and the rowdy bikers?
2:10 a.m.: That’s it. New Year’s Rockin’ Eve Part 2, 2014 comes to a close. Fergie will dance in place until next year’s big show. Have a great New Year’s Day, everyone!