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Lil Nas X Shows Full 'SNL' Pole Dance, Interrupted by Pants Rip

Lil Nas X on SNL

"That would have been everywhere," Jimmy Fallon said after watching the footage. "It would have been Big Nas X."

It was the rip heard round the internet.

For the season 46 finale, Lil Nas X gave Saturday Night Live a performance to remember. The star channeled the unabashed gay sexuality and eroticism he'd been peddling in the music video for his single "Montero (Call Me By Your Name)" and worked with choreographer and creative director Sean Banks to bring that to stage for the first time. Much in the way of mostly female pop stars before him, he turned the scene into a mass of writhing, oily, and perfectly timed bodies. Well, and then there was a now-viral wardrobe malfunction.

As he explained on Monday night's episode of The Tonight Show on Jimmy Fallon, it was not planned.

"So, I was pretty much going down the pole, you know doing my sexy drop," Nas X explained. "And boom, I felt air. I was like ok there's definitely some breeze going on and I also felt like some popping still happening while I was down there. So I was like oh god I hope it's not just please don't be on TV already. And SNL was actually live."

Onstage, Nas X held everything together, literally, with his hand and stayed pretty still for the remainder of the performance. The issue was that to close it out, the dancers were supposed to pull on him in different directions and he couldn't warn them to not pull on his pants which could exacerbate the issue of the ripped crotch. Thankfully, no one pulled too hard.

"You know what's hilarious, Nas X continued. "Everybody was leaving the stage -- and SNL people, a lot of them still didn't know -- so everyone is leaving the stage, all the dancers. They're like come on Nas, you got to go get ready for your next performance. I'm like I literally can not leave or everybody would see everything. I was like please bring me a towel."

In honor of the incident, the star chose to not wear pants on Jimmy Fallon, and instead opted for a kilt.

The worst of this all was that the slip up came at the end of an already hectic week. Nas X had rehearsed with a group of dancers for two weeks perfecting what they were going to do. Two days before airing a dancer got the virus at the center of the ongoing pandemic and in order to maintain protocols, Nas X could no longer be exposed to anyone who they had been in contact with (including all of the other dancers.) This meant that 24 hours before the performance, they had to recast the dancers and then retrain them with Bankhead doing lessons over Zoom.

But still with all of this none of us has been able to see what was supposed to happen had the pants not ripped. Well, wait no longer. Prior to the live taping, Nas X did a dress rehearsal where his trousers did not burst open. Fallon aired that footage to show us exactly why the star couldn't have just kept going.

"That would have been everywhere," Fallon said after watching the footage. "It would have been Big Nas X."

The star also discussed his upcoming album Montero, out this summer. "This is .. my entire life has led up to this moment of this album," he explained. "It's honest. It's 100% me, you know because last time I played so many different characters. I'm exploring my sexuality, myself, it's like a coming of age story ... my heart breaks."

RELATED | Watch Lil Nas X, 'SNL' Skewer Pride's Pitfalls in 'It's Pride Again'

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