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Last night, E! premiered the first episode of the three-part mini-reality series Nicki Minaj: My Truth, which chronicles the pop star/rapper's recording of her upcoming Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded rerelease, the prep for her first wide-scale tour and the first days of her (supposedly tumultuous) stint as an American Idol judge. Generally, we saw Nicki being one of two things: a whining, demanding diva over the most frivolous things (clothes, for example) or an egomaniac convinced that she is doing so much for the world (she called her Pink Friday fragrance a "milestone for hip-hop"). Ninety percent of what she says is in a cranky croak and she smiles only occasionally. She seems like the last person you'd ever want to spend time with.
Ironically, that is what makes My Truth fascinating and watchable — she's a superstar exhibiting reality TV-level bad behavior. At a time when celebrities are so careful, so publicly scrubbed, so seemingly afraid of their truth (see Katy Perry's milquetoast documentary from earlier this year), Nicki Minaj is making a production out of her warts. And this is what actually made the show — I would love to see what sort of damning footage was forbidden from airing. I haven't seen an honest of a portrayal of a pop diva since Madonna: Truth or Dare. The major difference is that Madonna's sense of humor could often soften her assiness (making it something nearly aspirational), whereas Nicki doesn't quite have a grasp on how to mix divadom with wit (and that's something her supposed adversary, Mariah Carey, at least attempts by playing a cartoon diva who actually really is as demanding as she thinks she's exaggerating). However, I did like when she dismissed someone's opinion on fashion because he rocked a "jean vest." Then later in the episode, Perez Hilton showed up wearing a denim vest.
It may not be admirable, but Nicki Minaj: My Truth was never, ever boring. It's a fantastic addition to the increasingly wussy celebreality genre.