For those in need of a break from the heated political frenzy of the Democratic National Convention, the MTV Video Music Awards provided a different opportunity to exercise their much-needed right to vote.
The 2012 VMAs, hosted by comedian Kevin Hart last Thursday, honored many popular artists, including Nicki Minaj, One Direction and Chris Brown.
Elegant and classy as always, Rihanna made her way up to the stage to accept the Video of the Year award for her video “We Found Love.” The video features a hauntingly dramatic story of a couple fighting through violence and love both together and apart, which parallels Rihanna’s real-life relationship with Chris Brown. The spectacularly theatrical video and eerie storyline match the lyrics of the song but contrast with its upbeat tempo.
Today’s up-and-coming boy band, One Direction, won Best New Artist for the down-to-earth and outdoorsy video of the internationally acclaimed hit single, “What Makes You Beautiful.” With its British charm, One Direction managed to beat Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe,” Frank Ocean’s “Swim Good,” Fun’s “We Are Young,” and The Wanted’s “Glad You Came.” Upon hearing they won, the boys shot up from their seats, hugged each other, and jumped on stage for their acceptance speech.
Bold and flamboyant hip-hop rapper Nicki Minaj won Best Female Video for her hit single “Starships.” After her flashy beach-scene music video won, Minaj repeatedly exclaimed “oh my god,” before catching her breath to thank fans and coworkers.
For Best Male Video, Chris Brown kept his cool as he graciously accepted the award for his hit “Turn up the Music.” His video featured a hardcore party scene, corresponding with the song’s intense mood. Brown beat Justin Bieber’s “Boyfriend” and the hits of other trendy male artists, including Frank Ocean, Drake and Usher.
Perhaps the most bizarre award-winning video came from Coldplay, who won Best Rock Video for “Paradise.” The quirky video featured an elephant’s struggle to find its way home, representing the song’s deeper meaning about the struggle of finding love.
Although there were no dramatic Kanye-esqe interruptions this year, the variety of talented artists featured in the VMAs provided a glamorous and satisfying evening of entertainment.