American Music Awards 2014's 20 Best and Worst Moments

The verdict on Taylor Swift, One Direction, 5SOS and everything from Pitbull's "Fireball" to Waka Flocka Flame

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Best: Charli XCX's Teenage Riot
Kevin Mazur/Getty15/20

Best: Charli XCX's Teenage Riot

In a sea of female pop stars flaunting their artistic seriousness (Taylor Swift) and booties (pretty much everyone else), Charli XCX seized an opportunity to show off what makes her different: a genuine, raw punk-rock spirit. The 22-year-old British songwriter — the creative force behind Icona Pop's "I Love It" and the hook on Iggy Azalea's "Fancy" — started her performance with "Boom Clap," the lighter-waving theme from teen weeper The Fault in Our Stars, filling the stage with romantic prom props. But before long, she'd ripped off her gauzy blue dress to reveal a devilish black vinyl get-up and had dancers in bondage gear burst her balloon arches. To the sounds of "Break the Rules" (a track off her forthcoming second album, Sucker) Charli led her all-girl band in a blitz of destruction. She forcefully grabbed her own boobs, threw her mic stand aside and ended by smashing a giant sucker that read "Sucker" to smithereens. It was the most rock & roll — and straight up fun — moment of the night.

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