One Week Review: Star on Everyday Struggle

In late December, the internet was shook when it was learned that Joe Budden, co-host of Complex’s Everyday Struggle would be leaving the show. A lot of the fans, including myself, criticized the move, to the point that many anticipated the show’s ending soon in 2018. But that sentiment soon changed – sort of – when on January 22, it made its return with a brand new host: Star of Star and Bucwild fame. Ironically, fans of the show were wondering who would be as controversial as Budden and if Complex could get someone that polarizing. They might have just exceeded those expectations.

When I first heard that Star would be taking over, I didn’t think it was THAT Star; but after findding out that was the case, a lot of things started running in my head. I’ve heard a few things about him that were not convincing to me that he could be a suitable public figure for this sensitive 2018 climate. I pulled upon a Twitter thread that pretty much pulled the history of who he was and stumbled upon a few jewels, as well as some reminders:

Knowing all these things, Complex didn’t just get somebody to fill in for Joe Budden, they got someone who will potentially get them in some hot water, even for an opinionated show. But as they say in football, that’s why they play the games and so I had to watch the show.

With my vague, miniscule knowledge of Star, I watched the show and it was an awkward morning stretch of an episode. First, Nadeska and Akademiks acknowledged Joe’s departure, then wished him well, before segueing into introducing Star as the new host. Right off the bat, he gave Akademiks the business over all of the mumble rap’s DJ’s past sins, questioning his objectivity and even getting at him about his infamous The War in Chiraq YouTube series. Throughout the show, Star, who proclaimed himself the Father of Trolling, engaged with Ak in constant back-and-forth banter that would stray away from the topic at hand. It was one of the more contentious shows in the series’ short history, right up there with the Migos and Vic Mensa interview, but probably short of the Migos incident.

But as things went on, the contentious aura of the new hosts’ dynamic seemed to dwindle down. The very next episode opened with an apology from Star for how strong he came off. There was also an apology for comments he made about Nadeska, which were before his arrival to the show and probably earlier than him meeting with Complex officials about being a co-host. He embraced all the topics, particularly, the ones involving newer acts, which was not so much the case with Joe.

There are plenty of positive things to point out with Star being on the show. Everyday Struggle gets to fill the role of the edgy, opinionated host while Akademiks retains his nice but crass opinionated role in the program. From what I have learned, Star is very much in tune with the current landscape of music. Apparently, he listens to some of the artists which may be referred to as “mumble rap”, which Complex kind of leans towards, so it will be great for their audience. It’s possible his controversial his controversial days are over. Everyday Struggle is probably his highest profile gig since his radio show from back in the day. Before this, he had his own web series and was not seen or heard about too much in the forefront. But given the popularity of Everyday Struggle, this might be the most light he has seen in a long time, which could mean he is inching his way towards a more visible opportunity.

However, it’s the potential for future controversy that will present itself as a negative. He’s from that grimy New York era that you hear so many of the older artists brag about, so you have to wonder how long will those antics last in 2018. Earlier I mentioned he had to apologize to Nadeska for some inappropriate sexual comments he made about her before being approached about doing the show. In the era of #MeToo and #TimesUp, Complex is lucky that the story did not get out before everyone was quick to resolve the issues behind closed doors.

My final verdict is that this stint looks to be promising for than the 2 weeks that Star predicted. What we got this week was just everybody kind of feeling each other out and getting rid of the post-holiday jitters. Next week we should get a better look of how the show would be moving forward.

Relive that glorious first episode below:

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