The Real Problem With Kanye West’s ‘SNL’ Meltdown

Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Between his Twitter tirades, his financial plea to Mark Zuckerberg, and his ongoing feud with Taylor Swift, Kanye West has definitely had a headline-making week — and it’s not over yet. A newly leaked video posted by Page Six shows the rapper having an epic meltdown right before his live performance at Saturday Night Live this past weekend.

Apparently, the tirade occurred after the rapper realized he could not use the set he had planned for his performance. In the audio clip, Kanye can be heard screaming at the SNL production staff and once again hurling insults at Swift (whom he calls a “fake ass”). But perhaps the craziest part of his backstage rant? At some point, Kanye claims to be more influential than a slew of famous figures, from Picasso to Pablo Escobar.

“Are they f—–g crazy? Whoa by 50 percent [I am more influential than] Stanley Kubrick, Picasso, Apostle Paul, f—–g Picasso and Escobar,” he can be heard screaming in the clip. “By 50 percent more influential than any other human being. Don’t f–k with me. Don’t f–k with me. Don’t f–k with me. By 50 percent dead or alive, by 50 percent for the next 1,000 years. Stanley Kubrick, ‘Ye.” Listen below:

Wow. It’s safe to say everybody is well aware that Yeezy has no problems making his opinions known, but this is a new level of egotistical even for him. Let’s just take a close look at the famous people he just name-checked again, shall we?

  1. Paul the Apostle, as in the guy who was handpicked by Jesus Christ to deliver the gospel.
  2. Pablo Picasso, who co-founded the Cubist movement (the invention of constructed sculpture), and is one of the best-known and most widely regarded figures in 20th century art.
  3. Pablo Escobar, who — while not exactly a role model for moral value — changed the entire landscape of his country’s economy with his drug cartel and was once among the top 10 richest people in the world.
  4. Stanley Kubrick, who is responsible for helming acclaimed flicks like The Shining and 2001: A Space Odyssey, and is widely considered one of the best directors of all time.

That’s quite the list. These four people are, for better or worse, some of the most influential names in history and while there’s no denying that West has had a significant impact on the music industry, no one in their right mind would put him at the same level of any of these figures — let alone 50% above them.

Then again, it probably shouldn’t come as a huge surprise that West thinks so highly of himself. The short-tempered artist has been open about proclaiming himself the world’s most influential rapper and has name-checked both Picasso and Kubrick several times in the past. In 2010, he created a 35-minute short film called Runaway that lifted elements from Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut and which he described as tribute to the director. As for Picasso, West’s just-released album, The Life of Pablo, is reportedly named after the artist.

The timing of this leak is especially incidental, since West seemed to be showing off a much more humble side of himself on social media just yesterday (only a few short days after the SNL incident). “My number one enemy has been my ego… there is only one throne and that’s God’s,” he wrote on Twitter.

Could that mean he’s finally learning his lesson and putting an end to the nonsensical tirades? We can only hope. But knowing Kanye, we won’t hold our breath.

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