The 2018 MTV Video Music Awards are in the books, and Camila Cabello had a very good night. The singer was the big winner taking home Video of The Year for “Havana,” as well as Artist of the Year. Camila was a bit overwhelmed with her win for Video of the Year since she received it from Madonna, who she bowed down to on the stage, and even dedicated the trophy to.
Other big winners included Post Malone, who nabbed Song of the Year for “rockstar,” and Cardi B, who took home Best New Artist, Song of the Summer for “I Like It” featuring Bad Bunny and J Balvin, as well as Best Collaboration for her contribution to Jennifer Lopez’s “Dinero.” To see the complete list of winners click here.
- Cardi actually opened the show holding what was supposed be baby Kulture in a pink blanket. She then trolled the audience and made it appear as though she was going to show off her new daughter, but instead unwrapped an MTV moonperson trophy.
- The VMAs didn’t have a host this year, so they relied on the presenters for jokes, including Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish, who tried a little too hard. They cracked jokes about DJ Khaled, the “Jersey Shore,” face tattoos and celeb quickie engagements. Tiffany at one point screwed up Camila’s name, and then commented about her many nominations, joking “for those of you watching at home, hi Fifth Harmony.”
- J.Lo was this year’s recipient of the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award but before she got her honor she treated the crowd to an epic performance featuring several costume changes, lots of dance routines and a bunch of hits. She kicked things off with “Waiting For Tonight,” in which she flew above the stage in a flowing Gucci dress. She eventually stripped down to a gold bodysuit and performed a medley of tunes including “On The Floor,” “Let’s Get Loud,” “Ain’t Your Mama,” “Love Don’t Cost a Thing,” “All I Have,” and, “Jenny From the Block.” She was also joined by Ja Rule for “I’m Real” and “Ain’t it Funny,” and ended with her latest single “Dinero.”
- In her speech J.Lo fought back tears as she talked about having to “force my own path, make my own rules” and noted that her life changed when she had her “two little angels,” referring to her twins Max and Emme. "I knew I had to be better. I knew I had to go higher, I knew I had to be stronger than I had been before,” she said. She also gave a shout out to her man Alex Rodriguez calling him “my twin soul.”
- The night also featured tribute to Aretha Franklin, with the network showing a clip of her performing “I Say A Little Prayer For You." That was followed by Madonna coming out to talk about how Aretha “changed the course” of her life, although it was really more of a story about herself, and had little to do with the Queen of Soul, apart from a song she sang at an audition.
Of course, the VMAs are really about the performances and there were definitely a ton of them. Performances included:
- Shawn Mendes kicked things off with “In My Blood,” and while he sounded great the cameramen seemed a bit off panning back so far at times you could see people still walking into the theater. At the end of the performance the “skies” inside opened up and rain fell down (pretty heavily) leaving Shawn and his white T-shirt drenched, which we’re sure his fans didn’t mind at all. (Although he didn’t seem thrilled)
- Logic once again made a statement, turning his performance of “One Day,” with OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder into an immigrant protest. Logic walked through the theater with more than two dozen immigrant children, wearing shirts that read “We Are All Human Beings.” They were then joined by their parents, with all of them holding candles in a vigil. In addition, Logic wore a shirt that read “F*** the Wall” in case the message wasn’t received.
- Panic at the Disco! performed “High Hopes” kicking off the performance from above the crowd.
- Nicki Minaj went all out for her performance, which was shot in front of an adoring crowd at The Oculus in downtown Manhattan (not Radio City Music Hall where the VMAs were held). She certainly gave off her “Queen” vibes, surrounded by dancers in gold as she performed a medley of “Majesty,” “Barbie Dreams,” and “FEFE.”
- A pony-tail less Ariana Grande, who made her red carpet debut with fiancé Pete Davidson, performed her “Sweetener” track "God Is A Woman" backed by 50 diverse female dancers in a last supper-type scene. She ended the performance holding hands with her grandmother, mother, and aunt.
- Travis Scott gave a trippy performance of “Stargazing,” which segued into “Stop Trying To Be Good,” which featured an appearance by James Blake. He also performed “Sicko Mode” backed by dozens of dancers. Travis ended his performance with a shout out to Aretha Franklin, and made it a point to note that his album “Astroworld” is number one, likely a response to Nicki Minaj’s Twitter rant about this week’s chart.
- Maluma made his MTV VMA debut with a sultry version of “Felices Los 4” which had him dancing in the audience with Camila Cabello.
- The night wrapped with Post Malone performing “rockstar,” featuring 21 Savage. Then Aersomith, took the stage for “Dream On,” and “Toys In The Attic,” with Post joining them on guitar and backup vocals.
- ONE MORE THING! During the show MTV launched a new campaign to get young people out to vote. The “+1 the Vote” campaign is a digital experience which will allow young people to register to vote, identify which of their friends aren't registered to vote, and encourage them to register and join them at the polls on November 6th.