Blackpink, Yankee Stadium, a lost stick, the metaverse, Fergie making an unexpected performance, and an unexpected album announcement are just a few of the exciting things that happened at the 2022 VMA. Oh, and there was lots of a** shaking. Yes, there was a lot that went on during the Sunday, August 28, 2022, MTV Video Music Awards.
Nicki Minaj, who recently achieved her first solo No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Super Freaky Girl,” was chosen as the 2022 VMAs Video Vanguard Award winner. This elevated her to the elite company of Michael Jackson, Missy Elliott, Madonna, and other pop culture icons. On the show, Red Hot Chili Peppers won the 2022 VMAs Global Icon Award and gave a performance.
Opening Night and Hosts
During his “First Class” performance, Jack Harlow invited Fergie onstage after sampling her song “Glamorous Life” for the song’s hook. Fergie’s sparkling silver Michael Schmidt Studios dress showcased the graphic “First Class” in red as she took the stage, wearing dark silver/gray crystal block heels and swaying, wild loose waves in her hair.
Lizzo performed the songs “About Damn Time” and “2 Be Loved” She wore a pink outfit with sheer stripes that exposed her boobs and revealed her thighs, as well as a high, long ponytail. She created a digital background dancer of herself using graphic backdrop images of herself dressed in various colored bodysuits.
LL Cool J — who melted my heart since he’s my forever celebrity crush — alongside Nicki Minaj and Jack Harlow served as the show’s co-hosts. As always, LL Cool J graced the stage confidently, making you feel like he was flirting with you while delivering a few laughs and props to his peers. LL Cool J humbly reflected on his first VMAs, “Welcome to the biggest music party of the year, no question about it.”
“The 2022 MTV VMAs! Make some noise!” he excitedly told the crowd at New Jersey’s Prudential Center. “I remember the first time I hit the VMAs stage. In a lot of ways, we were introducing hip-hop to the world. It was amazing, but tonight is your opportunity to prove that this is the livest and loudest MTV crowd in the history of MTV.”
“Make some noise!” LL Cool J once again told the crowd. “Tonight we’re straight out Jersey! Are you ready to have some fun?”
Notable Award Winners
- Video of the Year which was Presented by Burger King® was won by Taylor Swift in her music video, “All Too Well”.
- Bad Bunny also won an award for Artist of the Year.
- Then, Billie Eilish, for “Happier Than Ever”, won the award for Song of the Year.
- The award for Best New Artist presented by Extra was won by Dove Cameron.
- Also, Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow won Best Collaboration for their song titled, “Industry Baby.”
- Best Pop was won by Harry Styles.
- Just after winning the Vanguard Award, Nicki Minaj also won Best Hip-Hop featuring Lil Baby.
- The best Rock song was won by Red Hot Chili Peppers for the song “Black Summer”.
- And of course, the show-stopping booty-shaking Anitta won the award of Best Latin.
- The Weeknd, for his song “Out Of Time, won the award for Best R&B.
- Not forgetting the K-Pop award won by Lisa for “Lalisa”.
- Lizzo, for her song “About Damn Time”, won the award for Video for Good.
- Finally, Blackpink’s “The Virtual” won the Best Metaverse Performance for their song, “PUBG”.
Nicki Minaj Celebrated With A Lifetime Achievement – The Michael Jackson Vanguard Video Award
As soon as she received the prestigious Moonman award, which was previously won by the likes of the late David Bowie, Michael Jackson, Missy Elliot, LL Cool J, and Madonna, in the upscale world of pop art, Nicki will appeared in the VMAs platform for the first time since 2018.
Nicki Minaj thanked all of the people who had supported her throughout her career in her speech. She wished Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston were present. In her remarks on mental health, Nicki expressed the wish that others could comprehend what they meant and what they were going through. Even for those who appear to have ideal lives, she wished that people would take mental health seriously.
2022 VMAs Performances
Anitta, Bad Bunny, J Balvin and Ryan Castro, BLACKPINK, Kane Brown, Eminem, Snoop Dogg, Marshmello and Khalid, Lizzo, Maneskin, and Panic! at the Disco were just a few of the artists who performed at the VMAs. Snoop and Slim Shady performed a portion of their track in their Bored Ape avatars, bringing the metaverse to the Prudential Center.
From Harlow’s opening number to Anitta’s booty-shaking showpiece to Minaj’s jaw-dropping medley of hip-hop legends, here are all of the 2022 VMAs performances.
Nicki Minaj: Video Vanguard Medley
During the 2022 VMAs broadcast, anyone who had missed why Nicki Minaj is a cultural icon received a not-so-gentle memo as the Queen completely influenced the Prudential Center with a career-spanning mash-up. This included everything from her song-stealing verse on Kanye West’s “Monster” to her “Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded” gem “Beez in the Trap”, and her Hot 100 top 5 hits “Super Bass”, featuring Taylor Swift rapping. When Minaj finished her set with “Super Freaky Girl,” which recently reached No. 1 on the Hot 100, she turned up the heat.
BLACKPINK: Pink Venom
BLACKPINK broke out their new single “Pink Venom” with rapid-fire singing and furious dancing as pink fog spread over the platform and onto the VMAs crowd. Not only was it their initial appearance on a major American awards night, but it was also their VMAs debut. It won’t be their last, judging from what we’ve seen at the VMAs.
“VMAs! Did you really believe I wouldn’t jiggle my ass tonight?” Anitta pranced the VMAs stage like a street cat in search of its next food while wearing a skin-tight sparkly red suit. She rubbed up against her dancers before breaking into some incredibly fierce choreography and fulfilling her promise to shake her ass.
The 2022 VMAs didn’t feature a lot of rock, but Italian glam rockers and Eurovision champ Maneskin demonstrated that a rock n’ roll band can still appear like a crucial, even perilous, component of an awards presentation in the 2020s. Damiano David growled each phrase with pleasure as they tore through their gritty, sexy-sleazy “Supermodel.” The producers of the performance appeared to have found his bassist Victoria De Angelis’ exposing moment — she rocked the song topless for a while, except for a few silver pasties — to be a little too much, as they cut away from the stage for an unusually extended period.
Jack Harlow & Fergie: First Class/Glamorous
Jack Harlow performed “First Class,” his Billboard Hot 100 No. 1, in a set decorated to resemble the cabin of a plane, with Saucy Santana, Lil Nas X, and Avril Lavigne serving as his fellow travelers. This gave the VMAs an elegant start. When he moved to a larger stage, he shocked and delighted the audience by inviting Fergie to perform “First Class” and her “The Dutchess” single, “Glamorous,” the 2007 Hot 100 number-one hit song samples, together.
Bad Bunny: Titi Me Pregunto
Bad Bunny, who was on the east coast and missed the VMAs, quickly took over the VMA broadcast at New York’s Yankee Stadium after receiving the VMA for Artist of the Year. His “Titi Me Pregunto” VMAs performance proved what a stadium-owning expert he is. The entire arena was lit up both physically (due to light-up wristbands) and metaphorically (thanks to his smart, flexible flow and spectacular dancing). Bunny received the Moonman award for 2022 Artist of the Year onstage at Yankee Stadium immediately after the song ended.
Lizzo: About Damn Time/2 Be Loved
One of the best live performers out there, Lizzo took her Hot 100 No. 1 song “About Damn Time” and special standout “2 Be Loved (Am I Ready)” to the VMAs, playing enormous piano keys like Tom Hanks in the movie “Big.” Her vocals, strong kicks, and sophisticated choreography were all in top form.
Kane Brown: Grand
Kane Brown sounded fantastic on his rock-tinged sing-along song “Grand” while performing outside the Prudential Center in Fort Lee, New Jersey. The song is a good display of his tough-yet-tender vocals and his ability to engage an audience.
Snoop Dogg & Eminem: From the D to the LBC
Snoop Dogg and Eminem fully exploited the gravity-defying potential of a simulated show during the VMAs broadcast — lighting up while flying through the air and bursting in and out of their Bored Ape avatars — for anyone asking what the hell a virtual world award ceremony show might look like. Their comical look was a welcome breath of fresh air, even if an entire program dedicated to metaverse live shows would likely get old fast. And for the IRL lovers at the Prudential Center, Slim and Snoop didn’t leave them dangling by performing the song’s coda live on stage.
Red Hot Chili Peppers: Black Summer/Can’t Stop
Red Hot Chili Peppers paid tribute to deceased drummer Taylor Hawkins during their song and remarks instead of being awarded the 2022 VMAs Global Icon. Drummer Chad Smith threw his stick into the air with a little too much energy and missed it on the way down between the band’s frenetic performance of the new song “Black Summer” and 2003’s “Can’t Stop.”
Khalid & Marshmello: Numb
Khalid performed their most recent collaboration, “Numb,” a softly funky earworm that follows their earlier collaboration, “Silence,” with Marshmello, on guitar (and wearing green!). Onstage and with fans, Khalid appeared at ease and self-assured, and his affable warmth served to anchor the surreal camera images.
Panic! at the Disco: Don’t Let the Light Go Out
With the unenviable task of following Bad Bunny’s exhilarating performance one state away, Panic! at the Disco concluded the VMAs in terms of performance. Even so, the dreamy rock music was a little sleepy for a performance that came 3 hours into the awards ceremony. Brendon Urie is a vocal powerhouse, and he sold the hell out of their latest song “Don’t Let the Light Go Out,”, especially during the closing minutes.
J Balvin and Ryan Castro: Nivel De Perreo
While Ryan Castro, a great Colombian musician, and J Balvin pulled through “Nivel De Perre” together, the special effect of the big simulated woman twerking on stage alongside them was more perplexing compared to anything else, drawing spectators out of the moment a little.
Red Carpet Looks
1. L.L. Cool J
The 2022 VMA Host, Actor, and Rapper was wearing Dapper Dan and Rock the Bells, which was founded by LL Cool J in 2018, and named after his 1985 hit song.
2. Ashley Graham
Ashley Graham is one of the most successful plus size models who has broken barriers. People also love her for her transparency in sharing her pregnancy journey on social media. She hit the red carpet wearing a Houghton.
The Rapper with the hit song, “Big Energy Remix” featuring the legendary diva, Mariah Carey, showed up in an edgy neon green cutout blazer dress by Lado Bokuchava on the red carpet.
4. Becky G
The Mexican-American Latin Pop Singer wore a sexy medieval dress designed by Zuhair Murad.
5. Chloe Bailey
The singer/actress who always delivers — and the 2022 VMAs weren’t any different — wore a metallic silver dress with a sexy plunging neckline; the midriff area mimicked a corset structure and showed off her thick, or thique as Beyonce would say, thighs.
6. Kamie Crawford
The TV host wore a Barbie pink colored dress designed by Hanifa with her hair pulled back in a simple long braided ponytail, making her beautiful face and sexy dress the main features.
7. Rachel Lindsay
Rachel is an attorney and media personality who became known on The Bachelorette as the first black female bachelorette. I actually never watched this show until she was the lead, and I watched with my mother-in-law at home and recapped via text with my aunt. This is an emotional but fun memory I share with my mother-in-law who passed away last October. Rachel slayed in her all-black, Tina Turner fringe type of dress designed by Randi Rahm Couture with black strappy heeled sandals. She is serving and giving us Robin Givens from the classic movie, Boomerang.
8. Saucy Santana
Crafted with a hot pink fabric lining, this cream wrap dress maxi gown with faux-feather trim is designed for lavish lounging. The outfit had bell sleeves and a daring side slit, and was gathered and wrapped to one side. It was worn with white square-toed sandal heels. Large pearls were placed throughout each shoe strap, giving the straightforward silhouette an intriguing twist. His lips were nude to round off the warm brown tones of his face.
9. That Girl Lay Lay
The flashy, spunky actress wore a sporty black and white short suit by Dior with a white crop top and black combat boots. Her black hair is highlighted with blue streaks and four messy buns at the top, thick spiral curls falling to the side with sparkly sunglasses hanging from the tip of her nose, showing off her beautiful bold eyebrows and lavish lashes. My daughter and I are fans of Lay Lay and her Nickelodeon show and she did not disappoint us with her red carpet look.
In her billowing navy blue Jean Paul Gaultier Couture dress, Lizzo seemed destined to be the night’s most-memed celeb to hit the red carpet. Lizzo added dramatic Lael Osness gloves and Jennifer Fisher jewelry, including multi-hoop earrings and a fake lip ring, to her ensemble. She chose a deep navy lip color and a slicked-back haircut to match her dress and gloves.
Interestingly, a meme was made out of Lizzo’s dress. People compared her dress to a garbage bag, bed liners, and Ursual, a popular character from The Little Mermaid. Loving her outfit or not, we still love Lizzo as she is exceptionally talented, promotes positive body consciousness, and gives us life with her infectious smile and personality.
11. Black pink
The South Korean girl group was also not left out, as they stormed the event in Celine, Dior, Chanel, and Saint Laurent outfits.
12. Dove Cameron
The singer, who won the award for Best New Artist, was spotted wearing a flowery long dress by Paco Rabanne.