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32 Most Outrageous MTV VMAs Moments of All Time

From Miley’s twerk to Eminem being a jerk, the craziest highlights from the ceremony’s wild past

Britney Spears and Madonna - 2003 VMAs Kiss

Madonna and Britney Spears shared an iconic kiss at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards.

Christopher Polk/Getty

Since their 1984 debut, the Video Music Awards have thrived on being the unpredictable younger sibling of America's awards-show family — and their penchant for causing headlines and shaking up the pop music world hasn't diminished. Here are 32 moments from VMAs past that have caused tongues to wag and eyebrows to raise. 

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Kanye West Interrupts Taylor Swift (2009)

We'll never know how much (or little) the trajectory of Taylor Swift's brilliant career shifted because of a hot-tempered Kanye West snatching her mic amid her Best Female Video acceptance speech. Nor can we see where Kanye West would be today if he hadn't yelled "Imma let you finish, but Beyoncé had one of the best videos of all-time!" before stalking off. And what of Queen Bey masking her disbelief in the audience? All already hyper-famous when it went down, the roles the trio have played before and since were all distilled in that moment. The five ensuing years yielded some of the finest creative output of their careers, but those awkward moments still loomed nearly as large via apologies, rebuffs, lines drawn and teams formed.

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Madonna Kisses Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera (2003)

Nineteen years after Madonna's iconic "Like a Virgin" performance, the stage was set with a wedding cake once again — only this time there were three brides. Joining Madonna for a rendition of the track were Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, both of whom were trying to break out of their teen-idol boxes by proving how they were not, in fact, that innocent. Madonna decided to help both of them in that department, giving them mouth-on-mouth kisses — although the Britney one was steamier, and would be later teased in the video for their collab "Me Against The Music."

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