Live TV: #RentLive, #RentNotLive, It’s Still RENT! – And It Was Great!
Sunday night brought a very important event to live TV, and no, I’m not talking about the SAG Awards. Fox network aired a “live” version of RENT with an all star cast including Vanessa Hudgens, Tinashe, Mario, and many more.
This play is not the first live musical performance aired on TV (see Grease, The Sound of Music, Jesus Christ Superstar, and more), but it is by far the raunchiest. And it’s the first to have a last minute incident resulting in the “live” showing being mostly pre-recorded footage. What happened? Brennin Hunt, the actor playing the lead role of Roger, broke his foot during the final dress rehearsal the night before and was unable to perform any of his choreography for the actual show. As a result Fox chose to air footage from the dress rehearsal for the majority of the show. Although they did cut back to live for an epic finale with the OG movie crew and the internet had all the feels.
Here are a few of the best reactions to the historic event:
A scene of a Latinx drag queen and a queer black man kissing and singing to each other on national television is a WIN for us all ❤️. #RentLive
— JOHNNY SIBILLY (@JohnnySibilly) January 28, 2019
I don’t think a single RENT fan had a dry eye watching the OG cast in the final number ?
Idina Menzel stood right next to her ex-husband Taye Diggs looking fine as hell and then belted her face off like her vocal cords were still in 1996 and THAT is the energy I'm going to carry into 2019. #RentLive
— stephen sondheim and katrina lenk own my whole @ss (@mollzlols) January 28, 2019
Thanks to the live audience we have a few shots of the actual Sunday night version. This prompted a few viewers to suggest they would have rather seen Hunt perform the show live in the wheelchair. What do you think? Did Fox make the right call by airing the pre-recorded version?
— Alison Young (@Foreverayoung) January 28, 2019
The broken ankle incident did leave us all with a few lessons learned! And a glowing review for Vanessa Hudgens…
Lessons from #RentNotLive #RentFox #RENTLive
1. Understudies should never be left out. EVER.
2. Always go full out of a camera is rolling.
3. Dress rehearsal is not a “test run”
4. God bless @VanessaHudgens
— Nathan Eckstein (@nonstopnathan) January 28, 2019
Let’s just say she has come a long way from High School Musical days; from “Start of Something New” to “Take Me or Leave Me.”
— Julia Ribas (@julia13gr) January 28, 2019
And then there were the commercials. While the placement of the Truvada ad makes sense with the show’s content the nature of the drug’s cost did not sit well with the public.
Final thought for tonight re #RentLive, and specifically, these Truvada commercials: Truvada costs $6 to manufacture, but Gilead Sciences charges $1600 for this medication. We must hold corporations accountable for making life-saving medicines unaffordable for so many.
— Rashad Robinson (@rashadrobinson) January 28, 2019
But whhhyyyyy ? Thankfully it’s still available to rent on Amazon Prime. (Pun not intended…)
— Amanda Dawson (@amdaws0212) January 28, 2019
Can we keep the happy nostalgic musical mood just a little longer before dealing with the reality of the world news lately? Please?
Oof going from #RentLive to Fox News gave me some pretty major whiplash ?
— Laura Benanti (@LauraBenanti) January 28, 2019
Accurate. You can now find me pretending I’m in my own version of RENT while doing every day tasks like walking down the sidewalk.
— kayy arrr (@Krando0) January 28, 2019
What musical would you like to see on live TV next? Let us know in the comments below.
#RENTOnFox #RentLive #RentNotLive