The Weekend's Bandage-Covered AMAs Appearance Left Some Baffled

During Sunday night's American Music Awards ceremony, The Weeknd appeared with his head all bandaged up. His eyes, the tip of his nose and mouth were visible during the awards show, but the rest of his was covered in gauze—even his hair. Naturally, the Internet had some thoughts about the look, and folks were wondering what happened to the "Blinding Lights" hitmaker.

"Damn, when The Weeknd said 'I can't feel my face when I'm with you' he wasn't joking," one person tweeted.

damn, when the weeknd said "i can't feel my face when i'm with you" he wasn't joking #AMAs

— laura (@zeugirdorarual) November 23, 2020

"It just doesn't make any sense to me," another chimed in, trying to figure out what was going on.

what’s with @theweeknd’s face???

was he beat up???

are we glamorizing violence or plastic surgery???
I can’t tell...

or is it “fashion”???

it just doesn’t make any sense to me and I want to understand... #AMAs

— Brandon Hilton (@BRANDONHILTON) November 23, 2020

One person likened his alarming look to Joaquin Phoenix's Joker.

the weeknd lives in a society

— ivan 🧚 (@ukrhoe) November 23, 2020

Someone else suggested that he see a medical professional.

The weeknd needs a medic #AMAs

— 🌹 (@tvgoldtweets) November 23, 2020
The Weeknd AMAs
In this image released on November 22, The Weeknd attends the 2020 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 22, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. Emma McIntyre /AMA2020/Getty Images for dcp

Despite the singer's alarming look, rest assured that he was actually just playing into the aesthetic of his latest album After Hours, specifically his 2019 smash "Blinding Lights."

I want someone to be as committed to me as The Weeknd is committed to character #AMAs

— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) November 23, 2020

"'Blinding Lights' [is about] how you want to see someone at night, and you're intoxicated, and you're driving to this person and you're just blinded by streetlights," The Weeknd told Esquire in August. "But nothing could stop you from trying to go see that person, because you're so lonely. I don't want to ever promote drunk driving, but that's what the dark undertone is."

As an album, After Hours focuses on this character, bloodied and bandaged up, and he's featured in an accompanying short film that shares the album's name. The character debuted in September 2019 for the "Heartless" music video, and has appeared in subsequent music videos since.

The Weeknd rocked the bloody beat-up look when he performed on Saturday Night Live in March and fans were concerned then, too, as per The Blast. In an April interview with GQ, The Weeknd described the concept behind his After Hours persona as a character "losing his mind in Vegas."

Whether or not The Weeknd will keep up with this look for the 2021 Super Bowl Halftime Show, remains to be seen. (We can't imagine that he'll up the ante, because performing in a full body cast wouldn't make for a dynamic Super Bowl stage show.)


The Weeknd at the Super Bowl Halftime Show:

— MJ 🍷 (@HeyMistyJ) November 23, 2020

At the 2020 AMAs, The Weeknd won three awards: Favorite Male Artist – Soul/R&B, Favorite Album – Soul/R&B and Favorite Song – Soul/R&B.

That's an impressive haul, but he was also nominated for five additional awards: Artist of the Year, Favorite Music Video, Favorite Male Artist – Pop/Rock, Favorite Song – Pop/Rock and Favorite Album – Pop/Rock.

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