The Most Embarrassing Attempts At Throwing Shade During The VMAs, Ranked

The 2017 VMAs might go down as the most blatant attempts at shade-throwing per minute since the East vs. West Coast rap wars in the 90s. It seems like everyone and their drugged-out stepmom came to the show with the intention of getting some press squashing beefs. For anyone who wasn’t watching Game Of Thrones actually tuned in last night, you honestly might have forgotten the whole thing was supposed to be about music videos. Honestly, we might as well change the name of the show from the Video Music Awards to the Thinly Veiled Attempts At Making Money Off Fake Drama Statue-Giving Festival. Sure, the TVAAMMOFDSGF doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, but it is definitely a more accurate description of what goes on. So for those of you who turned the show off at 9pm because of GOT didn’t catch all the shade, here’s a ranking of the shadiest moments, from most to least embarrassing. 

Katy Perry To Trump

Look, I’m as much for shading the Trump Administration as anyone (sign up for The Betches Sup!), but whoever told Katy Perry to kick off the VMAs with five minutes of political standup is seriously disturbed. Like, yes girl, we get it, you voted for Hillary. So did a majority of America.

^^^ See. That’s how you throw shade at the Trump Administration. No need for some bizarre story about being on a spaceship that tries to roast fidget spinners, Russian meddling, and Fyre Festival all in one cringeworthy bit. Did anybody else notice how they kept cutting to Ellen during Katy’s opening? I think the camera guy, like all of us, was hoping that Ellen would just jump on stage and take over.

But seriously Katy, in the future if you are looking for seasoned political comedy writers, my email is [email protected] and my rate is $7 Million p/hour. Thanks.

Adam Levine To Lorde

You probably didn’t even realize this shade was thrown because Adam Levine is over it didn’t happen at the actual event, but only-member-of-Maroon-5-anybody-cares-about Adam Levine was not feeling Lorde’s performance, or like, any of the VMAs for that matter. Levine tweeted “Julia Michaels gets cut off while she’s singing and Lorde gets to NOT sing her whole song,” because apparently Adam Levine is a messy bitch who lives for drama. He also tweeted “It’s always exciting to see how utterly horrible the VMAs will be. They really delivered so far this year.” Agreed. But like…damn Adam, somebody seems salty that they didn’t get an invite this year. You’d better chill on some of the industry shade. Any person at the VMAs could take your cushy Voice job in a second. Also, leave Lorde out of this. She had a fucking cold. 

Taylor Swift To Everyone

The most highly anticipated moment of the VMAs was the release of Taylor Swift’s new Monster Mash “Look What You Made Me Do” music video, and she certainly did not hold back on the shade. The whole video was a graveyard smash mashup of all of Taylor’s recent beefs, with digs at Kimye, the media, Katy Perry, Tom Hiddleston, and anyone who has ever wronged Taylor in her lifetime. And if an opening shot of a tombstone with the words “Taylor Swift’s Reputation” wasn’t subtle enough for ya, Taylor brings the whole thing home with a bizarre Taylor-on-Taylor sketch comedy moment where T-Swift (dressed as all the Taylors of Christmas Past) attempts to address all the mean things people say about her, but really just proves she’s like, a terrible actress.

Remy Ma to Nicki Minaj

I mean, of course she did. Remy Ma did not waste any of her .5 seconds of VMA camera time blatantly trying to get some attention dissing Nicki Minaj. I guess Remy needs a new reason for talk shows to book her is still pretty pissed. The VMAs brought in Remy as one of the C-List celebs they trot out to lead into the commercial breaks, and Remy wasted no time trying to make it to the B list by coming for Nicki, adding “Nicki what’s good?” to her outro.

A year-old beef that references a 2-year-old beef?

**rolls eyes so hard I have to go to the hospital**

Fifth Harmony To Camilla Cabello

Perhaps the least subtle shade of the night occurred with Fifth Harmony took the stage. The girls appear with five silhouettes, with one being immediately booted off stage in what was obviously a dig at Camilla Cabello, who left the group last year. Um…yeah…did I say this moment was “shade”? What I meant to say was that this moment was a whole fucking eclipse.

Cersei To Danearys

I mean, we all knew that Danearys was going to show up to the big meeting on her dragon, but Cersei wasted no time shading the dragon queen for her lateness with an epic eye-roll and “We’ve been waiting her a long time” combo—oh wait. This is the wrong show. My bad.

The Game Of Thrones finale was dope, though.

Cardi B To The Police

Cardi B won the “most controversial moment” award this VMAs by using her mic time to shout out kneeling football guy Colin Kaepernick. The up-and-coming rapper took the opportunity during one of her intros to say “Colin Kaepernick, as long as you kneel with us, we’re going to be standing for you.” See Katy Perry, that’s how you do mid-VMA political commentary. You just fucking say what you mean. No spaceships. No bullshit. And maybe a nip slip just to keep things fun.

Honestly, all of these adult babies people should be glad that nobody watched last night because of Game Of Thrones. The whole thing was embarrassing. Except for Cardi B. Cardi B can hang. 

Alise Morales
Alise Morales
Alise Morales is a comedy writer and performer. She is the writer of the Betches Sup Newsletter and co-host of the Betches Sup Podcast.