Worst: No Mention of Music Video Pioneers David Bowie and Prince
It's pretty hard to imagine what modern pop music would be like if David Bowie and Prince had never existed, but it's impossible to imagine MTV without their visual flair setting dazzling examples in its earliest years. And yet, the VMAs chose not to mourn either recently deceased genius. The night lacked even a respectful mention of either legend by a presenter — though Bowie did appear briefly onscreen when the video for "Blackstar" won an award for art direction. Still, you'd think Bowie, the winner of the very first Video Vanguard Award and a man who was making videos for a full decade before MTV was born, would merit some acknowledgement. The Video Vanguard is an award, it should be noted, the Prince never received – though maybe MTV thought he'd be insulted by the honor once they re-named it for Michael Jackson.