MTV VMAs 2016: Highlights and winners
1. No official hosts were announced for the show, but comedians Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele were introduced as masters of ceremony of the evening. Playing the roles of fictional social media influencers "The Shamester" and "Lizard Sheeple", they offered play-by-play commentary as the show was in swing.
2. Recipient of this year's Vanguard Award Rihanna opened the show at Madison Square Garden. Her performance was split into three mini sets. Each time she came on stage, the Barbodian stunner ran through a medley of her best hits in her more-than-a-decade-long career. Yeap, her debut album was released in 2005. Pon de Replay, anyone?
3. Alicia Keys took to the stage makeup-free (keeping to her promise she made this May) to present the award for Best Male Video. Before she presented the award, she noted that it was the 53rd anniversary Martin Luther King Jr.'s significant "I have a dream" speech, and recited her own heartfelt poem:
4. No Kanye-Taylor drama this year—Swift wasn't nominated for any Moonmen this year, and chose to skip the awards altogether. Meanwhile, Kanye was there to present his video Fade, but before that: "Imma talk". He went on to talk about fame. Fair enough, he was allotted four minutes of free time to speak on the show anyway.
5. When Queen Bey takes the stage, you know it's going to be a show-stopping performance. The singer (who was nominated for 11 awards, by the way) rolled out an epic Lemonade medley, even including an outfit change between Pray You Catch Me and Hold Up. She ended her set with Formation, which was performed earlier this year at the Super Bowl halftime show.
6. She was known as the pop princess, and now the comeback queen—Britney Spears returns to the VMAs stage for the first time since 2007 to perform her single Make Me with rapper G-Eazy. It is hard to beat her past VMAs moments (remember the snake?) or the mini-concert performance by Beyoncé that went up not long before hers, but props to her for making a return.
The full list of VMAs 2016 winners:
Video of the Year: Formation - Beyoncé
Best Female Video: Hold Up - Beyoncé
Best Male Video: This Is What You Came For - Calvin Harris ft. Rihanna
Best Collaboration: Work From Home - Fifth Harmony ft. Ty Dolla $ign
Best Hip Hop Video: Hotline Bling - Drake
Breakthrough Long Form Video: Lemonade - Beyoncé
Best New Artist: DNCE
Song of Summer presented by Verizon: All In My Head (Flex) - Fifth Harmony ft. Fetty Wap
Best Art Direction: Blackstar - David Bowie
Best Choreography: Formation - Beyoncé
Best Direction: Formation - Beyoncé
Best Cinematography: Formation - Beyoncé
Best Editing: Formation - Beyoncé
Best Visual Effects: Up&Up - Coldplay