VMAs 2022 – A Night to Remember in Pop Culture!

MTV’s Video Music Awards were definitely entertaining this year – from the red carpet looks all the way to the award nominees and winners.


Jack Harlow and Taylor Swift at the 2022 VMAs. | Photos by Christopher Polk and Kevin Mazur, Getty Images

The 2022 Video Music Awards was filled with stunning red carpet looks, incredible live performances, and absolutely deserved awardings.

The biggest celebrities showed up in their grandest and boldest outfits. Taylor Swift arrived wearing a glamorous Oscar De La Renta piece – a nude bodice strung together with chains that were covered in blinding jewels. Fans speculated that she wore it because she was going to announce Reputation (Taylor’s Version), as the dress looked like a recreation of the bathtub scene in her “Look What You Made Me Do” music video, in which it was filled with diamonds, gold, and other luxuries. Other fans said it was a recreation of her dress from the 2009 VMAs, when Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, got on the stage and interrupted Swift’s acceptance speech for the Best Female Video award. Whatever her reason was for wearing it, Taylor Swift’s unparalleled fashion genius struck again. 

Lil Nas X, Jack Harlow, and Blackpink all wore black, and they looked incredible. Lil Nas X’s outfit was incredible, a feathered skirt and matching headpiece designed by Harris Reed. Jack Harlow wore a simple Hermes leather suit and sported his go to pair of sunglasses to complete the look. Lisa, Jisoo, Jennie, and Rosé of Blackpink all put their own touch on a classic black outfit. Lisa wore a classic two piece set, Jisoo sported a lace maxi dress, Jennie wore a low rise skirt and a crop top, while Rosé showed in a stunning long sleeve dress with floral detailing. 

All of the other celebrities looked absolutely incredible. I mean, isn’t the whole point of a red carpet to show up and show out? 

As for the actual awards, MTV introduced a new category, Best Metaverse Performance. The metaverse continues to expand and attract an audience, so MTV’s move to include it in the award show is understandable. Six artists were up for the award: Ariana Grande (Fortnite), Blackpink’s “The Virtual” (PUBG Mobile), BTS (YouTube), Charli XCX (Roblox), “Justin Bieber – An Interactive Virtual Experience” (Wave), and the “Twenty One Pilots Concert Experience” (Roblox). 

Ultimately, Blackpink ended up taking the award for their in-game concert in PUBG. The girl group and their fans were incredibly delighted and thankful for the win. Blackpink continued to have a great night, with Lisa, a member of the group, winning the Best K-Pop award for her solo song “Lalisa.” 

The Best Metaverse Performance was the only new category introduced, while all other categories remained the same. 

Starting off the night with a bang, Nicki Minaj won the first of many awards – the Video Vanguard Award. The trophy is awarded to someone who has made “outstanding contributions”   and a “profound impact” on music video and media culture. The moonman differs on this award, instead being gold plated rather than silver. Nicki was eternally grateful for the award and included a heart touching speech. “I wrote this down, I don’t know why, but this was in my spirit to say: I wish that Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson were here,” Minaj said. “I wish that people understood what they meant and what they were going through. … I wish Pop Smoke and Juice Wrld and Nipsey Hussle were here. R.I.P. Daddy, my cousin Richard, and my business manager Angela, who I never got to say ‘rest in peace’ to publicly.”

Next Up, Red Hot Chili Peppers were honored with the Global Icon Award, which recognizes artists who have left an indelible, endearing mark on the world and are just as impactful as ever.”

As for the “of the year” awards, there were many great candidates. Video, Artist, Group, Song, Album, and Push Performance of the year were all a tight race. Taylor Swift’s “All Too Well: The Short Film” took Video of the Year, also going on to snatch two more awards that night.

Bad Bunny was honored with the Artist of the Year award, deservedly so. He had a breakout year, releasing a new hit album Un Verano Sin Ti (A Summer Without You), him and his songs blowing up all over social media, and even starring in a new movie, Bullet Train. 

BTS took the award for Group of the Year, Push Performance of the Year was rewarded to SEVENTEEN for “Rock With You,” and Billie Eilish won Sing of the Year for her sensational hit “Happier Than Ever.” 

Ex-One Direction member and current global icon, Harry Styles, took home the award for Album of the Year with his album Harry’s House. Harry couldn’t be at the VMAs due to his commitment to performing 15 nights of concerts at Madison Square Garden in New York City, but he accepted the award though a prerecorded video. “I know this is a fan voted award,” The singer said. “I would like to say thank you to all my fans who voted. I wouldn’t be holding this if it wasn’t for you.” 

Harry Styles also won two more awards, Best Pop and Best Cinematography, for his song “As It Was.” The singer, amongst others, definitely had a successful year at the 2022 VMAS. 

So many artists released incredible tunes this summer, but the one that took the cake for the Song of the Summer Award was Jack Harlow’s “First Class.” Harlow ended up performing his song at the awards show, accompanied by Fergie, whose voice is featured from her song “Glamorous.”

As for the “best” categories, Jack Harlow won the best collaboration award for his worldwide hit “Industry Baby” with Lil Nas X, the song also winning Best Art Direction and Best Visual Effects. Nicki Minaj and Lil Baby won the Best HipHop award for “Do We Have a Problem?”, Red Hot Chili Peppers took Best Rock for their song “Black Summer,” The Weekend won Best R&B for “Out of Time,” and Best Alternative went to Maneskin for “I Wanna Be Your Slave.” 

The 2022 VMAs overall was an incredible award show. From the presentations, speeches, and performances, it was an all around enjoyable experience. It’s safe to say that the world agreed, as around 4 million people tuned in. It’s safe to say that award shows are back, and the VMAs executed it perfectly!