MTV Video Music Awards 2011 Liveblog and Open Thread

Hello, beautiful creatures! Last year we didn’t even do a real liveblog of the VMAs because it seemed unlikely that Kanye was going to show up Taylor Swift again. But this year I’ve volunteered to carry the torch, even though I know little about music beyond, “Like Lady Gaga is good and stuff.” Oh well, onward and upward!


This whole week I’ve been tirelessly planning. Unfortunately, that planning was geared towards the impending Hurricane Irene and I don’t think my viewing of the VMAs is going to be much helped by five gallons of water or sixteen cans of tuna. I didn’t liveblog the first half hour of the pre-show because I was recovering from said hurricane and also I didn’t want to.


9:00pm EST It’s happening it’s happening it’s happening!

Yes! Jo Calderone (Lady Gaga’s Ziggy Stardust). I’m surprised that Jo’s smoking. Doesn’t Lady Gaga have to sing asap? Joe is ranting about Lady Gaga and it’s sort of nuts and I also sort of love it.

Jo: I’m not real. I’m theater.


9:05pm EST: Is it just me or is Jo rocking “You and I” Grease T-Bird Style.

9:08pm EST: Did Jo/Gaga just fall? I think so since they sort of cut away as she fumbled.

9:12pm EST: I guess Kevin Hart is not hosting but introducing the show. He’s super upset about it.

9:14pm EST: Nicki Minaj and Jonah Hill presented Best Pop Video. Nicki Minaj is dressed like the 80s. The entire decade. All of it. Is that an inflatable animal on her head?


Britney Spears — “Till the World Ends” wins Best Pop Video


9:16pm EST: Briney Spears loves someone named “Jason.” I think we can all assume that Adele is pisssssed.

9:24pm EST: Kanye and Jay Z singing/rapping feeling Otis. My roommate’s mom is not impressed.

9:30pm EST: Miley Cyrus and Sean White are presenting for Best Rock Video. This combination is perfect if you’re me/any other girl who loves Disney and snowboarding ages 15-25.


Foo Fighters — “Walk” win Best Rock Video

9:35pm EST: Why are Jack Black, Will Ferrel and Seth Rogan pretending to be future beastie boys? I’m confused by lame jokes.


9:37pm EST: Oh. They’re presenting for Best Hip Hop Video.

Nicki Minaj — “Super Bass” win Best Hip Hop Video


9:40pm EST:
My Roommate:
Is that stuffed animal her purse? How is she sitting in that? Oh it’s so short.
Me: Her ass is just on the seat.

9:44pm EST:I love Demi Lovato. I loved Trouty Lips until he decided to leave Glee. Dude: career mistake. They’re presenting for Best Collaboration. How is this even a category?


Katy Perry (featuring Kanye West) — “E.T.” wins for Best Collaboration

9:45pm EST:
Wow shocker. Katy Perry makes a Kanye’s a jackass joke. Original
My Roommate: She looks dumb

9:47pm EST:Hmmm Paul Rudd is introducing someone. Yay it’s Pitbull!! I love this song.

9:49pm EST:Holy shit. That’s what Pitbull looks like? I just got blindsided. He makes a lot of claims in his song I suspect are not entirely accurate.

9:52pm EST:Jessie J’s purpose in the VMAs is still unclear to me beyond her (currently) being the gayest part of the show.

9:58pm EST:Oh. More Katy Perry. Wait. Yay! Adele performing. I’m only 2 days younger than her but somehow I still want to grow up to be her.

10:03pm EST: Jessie J’s purpose is now obvious. To sing Katy Perry’s song better than the original.

10:09pm EST: Beavis and Butthead and Nicki Minaj what?

10:10pm EST:
My Roommate: Did Jessie J bedazzle her cast?

Justin Bieber — “U Smile” wins Best Male Video

Seriously guys I swear he’s trying to look like a lesbian. An adorable butchy hipster lesbian. I want to marry her.

My Roommate: Check out his Yves Saint Lawrence pin. It just looks like an old lady’s broach.

10:13pm EST: Why is Chris Brown on TV? I thought we all unilaterally decided we fucking hated him? But wow. Look at his brooch. Putting the Bro in Brooch.

10:16pm EST: OMG Chris Brown is flying! Who allowed this to happen? Someone call NASA.

10:18pm EST: Ouch. Jessie J is sort of butchering No Scrubs. Still funny that she sang it after Chris Brown’s performance.

10:21pm EST:I’m a little bored. This show really needs more gay. At least the Teen Choice Awards showed lots of Bieber…


10:21pm EST:The best words ever said: Ladies and gentlemen, Lady Gaga. She’s here to introduce a Britney Spears Tribute?! Ah. The “Michael Jackson You’re Cool Awesome and Doin’ Stuff Video Award.” So important.

Gaga:Britney taught me how to be fearless. She taught us all how to be fearless.

Then Gaga made a masturbation joke but I’m too embarrassed to quote it.


10:29pm EST: Britney is noticeably uncomfortable around Jo eh? She’s like. Um. Don’t touch me.

10:31pm EST: It’s a good thing Beyonce is performing something in sequined blazers. Am I supposed to know this song? Does Beyonce have a wind machine or did she just learn to flex her hair?

10:34pm EST: Aw I just remembered Beyonce is pregnant. Cute. Cute. Cute.


Lizz: How cute was that belly rub?
Intern Grace: so cute!

10:40pm EST: Justin Bieber’s girlfriend and a werewolf are presenting for best new artist. Which is funny because they’re both new artists. Well, not the wolf.


Tyler, the Creator — “Yonkers” wins Best New Artist

10:42pm EST: This guy is so new I’ve never heard of him. Also, his speech has so many swears I can’t even follow it. I think his speech went something like this:

Okay all you fucking goddamn fucker shitty ass stupid mother fucking kids. Even you can pull this goddamn shit fucking shit off. You can fuck all those mother fuckers and do this shit.

Something like that. But censored it was just “You kids can do this too.”

10:45pm EST: I’ve just been informed that Autostraddle gives a fuck about Tyler the Creator.

This is Tyler’s mom.

10:46pm EST: Did anyone just see that Young the Giant crowd surf fail?


10:50pm EST:I’m getting bored. Why aren’t there more gays on MTV? Between Jessie J, Lady Gaga and Justin Biber we only have like one and a quarter lesbians at this show.

MTV doesn’t care about gay people

10:55pm EST: The old lady from Beerfest (Cloris Leachman) just made 1000 hilarious jokes (including saying DTF) and Snooki made one that didn’t land. Ha.

Lady Gaga — “Born This Way” wins Best Female Video and Best Video with a Message

10:59pm EST:I guess I sort of take back what I said about MTV and gay people. But let me just say that Beyonce had the best video of the year.

11:03pm EST:Well. Russell Brand discovered sunless tanner.

11:04pm EST: Oops. Just realized he’s basically giving a eulogy and introduction to Amy Winehouse’s tribute.

Intern Grace: amywinehouseamywinehouseamywinehouseTONYBENNETTamywinehouse

11:08pm EST:Tony Bennett’s outfit in the recording studio is the same as the one he’s wearing at the VMAs. Why does Tony Bennett only have one outfit?

My RoommmateBecause he’s Tony Fucking Bennett. That’s what he wears to bed.

11:10pm EST: Congratulations Bruno Mars. You just joined the “dudes who look like lesbians” club. Justin Bieber will teach you the secret handshake and Conan will show you where to get your ID badge.


11:18pm EST:I don’t know what the Hunger Games is about but I think I need to see it.

11:19pm EST:Katie Holmes? She has nothing to do with the music industry…


Katy Perry — “Firework” wins Best Video of the Year

11:22pm EST:Not surprising but I’m still not pleased. What is she wearing? Why is she dressed like a Sim? Why is she dressed like cubism? Why is she dressed like a Green Bay Packers fan?


11:27pm EST: I guess Lil Wayne is closing this shindig out.


His last song rivals Tyler, the Creator in incoherence in terms of censoring.
Until I can get an actual clip of that performance:

11:35pm EST: Wait. It’s over? I watched like five minutes of MTV’s new show I Just Want My Pants Back thinking it was a commercial.

I guess that’s it. Seriously? That’s why I got dressed up all fancy? Well, here it is, the only reason you watched.


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Lizz is a consumer, lover and writer of all things pop culture and the Fashion/Style Editor at She is also full time medical student at Brown University in Providence, RI. You can find her on the twitter, the tumblr or even on the instagram.

Lizz has written 261 articles for us.


  1. I don’t really understand what’s going on.

    Did Jessie J do something really bad and now she’s in her own personal pop purgatory so everytime she starts singing she gets covered in screen graphics and it cuts to the ads?

    I liked that Nicky Minaj was dressed as a vector graphic, but then I admire her in general for coming into existence and rendering it possible to use people starting with J in the popular time-waster The Celebrity Name Game.

  2. I usually feel sorry for people when i find out they are pregnant but i was super excited to hear about Beyonce. i love her.

    • She broke it awhile ago. Was in a cast for a month-ish.

      Hoping she will get to perform for real…

      • Darn, that stinks! Hope she heals quickly. Also, I was a bit disappointed that she was just filler (even though sometimes she wasn’t sounding too fresh… instantly forgiven, though).

  3. the biebs is one hot lesbo.

    he’s confusing my sexuality. what happens when more boys decide to look like him?


  4. also….



  5. I guess I am old. I don’t care about the VMAs anymore. It at one time was appointment TV for me. I also have no clue who some of these people are. And I don’t own a TV. So, yeah.

    The Pitbull comment made me laugh though. I had to Google Image him, and then it was even funnier. It’s always weird when you see what someone looks like after hearing them for a while when it totally doesn’t match your mental image.

  6. That was pretty bad. To be honest, the only parts of the show I enjoyed were Adele’s performance and Gaga’s usual antics.

    Better luck next year, I guess? :(

  7. OK, I just looked up Tyler The Creator based on this article and the linked AS article. This is what passes for great hip-hop these days? I think a very apt comparison would be Eminem, but this guy tries even harder to be disgusting and shocking. It’s people who would be relatively talented, good rappers using shock value to get attention — and it working. Rap has always had a bit of misogyny or violence, but good god, Tyler The Creator has downright disturbing stuff and appears to legit suffer from mental illness. I think of records like Illmatic by Nas, Low End Theory by A Tribe Called Quest, 36 Chambers by Wu-Tang Clan and I can’t fathom anyone would put that Tyler The Creator’s garbage in there. There’s nothing innovative about what that guy is doing. Anyway, off my little soap box.

  8. I don’t think I could watch the VMAs, but this was a great little blurb. Just enough pop for one day.

  9. This was not good. Not good at all.
    And to think that the VMAs were very relevant one day…

  10. Ooh, ooh… the part about Katie Holmes being irrelevant to the VMAs made me realize something. She was a guest judge a few weeks ago on SYTYCD. And I remember thinking: why the hell is Katie Holmes on here? Then, I saw in US Weekly that she’s got this new movie out. So, my theory is that all of these random guest spots are part of her promo-ing this new flick, since her big screen career has lately been in the shitter. Which makes me wonder how much money Tom Cruise paid people to get her on all those shows. Or maybe he just used his Scientology mind powers.

    I don’t care that I admitted that I read US Weekly in this comment. Yup, I said it.

    Also, the clip at the end made me realize that those funny feelings I get whenever I see Anne Hathaway is actually me having a crush on her. I just have to get over that she was in the “Princess Diaries”.

    • Aww I loved her in The Princess Diaries. She was so cute and she had cute boots and a cute cat.

  11. I am glad the VMAs happened simply because it created this liveblog and brought the clip of Anne Hathaway rapping into my life! Thank you Lizz & AutoStraddle. Otherwise, my feeling are *Yawn*.

    • Thanks. The show was indeed boring but I wrote it just for you guys from the soft squishy places in my heart.

  12. MTV hasn’t played music videos in at least a decade. What gives them the right to host a music awards show? Oh and Justin Bieber looks more like a lesbian than ever

    • yea for real!

      in the first picture i thought he was holding pretzel dough…but seriously, what the ?!

  13. that dressy jacket that the biebs is wearing? I bought one at the Gap earlier this year when it was like 25% off. satin lapel and all, just felt like sharing.

    i didn’t watch this tonight, instead I went and saw Peaches DJ a set which apparently was the better option even though the drinks were weak. She bathed me in champagne. She was wearing a shawl made of boobs! (not real ones obvs. that would be kinda weird/Silence of the Lambs.) The nipples were barbies doll heads.

    Also, being hispanic and all I feel like this Pitbull fellow has been around for ages, or am I wrong?

  14. true story: i was browsing through tweets when i noticed this one that was pretty hilarious. the little mini picture looked like this super-cute butch, so i obviously rushed to click on the larger size. it was just a justin bieber photo. this has happened to me twice.

    beyonce was adorable with the belly rub, adele pretty much made the VMAs worth watching, and that anne hathaway video made me fall off my bed from laughter. yesss.

  15. i saw this somewhere else: “that awkward moment justin beiber wins best male video dressed as a lesbian librarian and lady gaga wins best female video dressed as jo calderon.” I think they mean awesome moment.

    Also, I hated the first comedian in the opening showing his obvious discomfort with gaga’s jo skit. Get over yourself.

    • I heard (on Twitter, I think) that the cast of Glee was going to be part of the Amy Winehouse tribute. That will teach me to believe everything I read on the Internet.

  16. I pretty much sat through this whole thing just because I didn’t want to turn it off before the Hunger Games clip. So I sat though like 30 billion hours of bs for 30 seconds of running in the woods. I still have no regrets, but MTV is a tricky bastard.

    Gaga was awesome. Adele made me cry. I really don’t get why you would waste Jessie J by having her sing under the announcer cutting to break; didn’t they do the same thing to Robyn last year? Beiber’s growing up into such a cute lesbian.

  17. All I can say is that I truly hate MTV for just give like 15seconds of music for Jessie J .I was pissed off

    Also, the look of Adele when she lose is priceless. She’s saying ” B*tches see you in the Grammys”

  18. I started watching this on live stream last night but turned it off halfway through. Glad I didn’t waste any more of my time since 99% of it is up on MTV’s website now, conveniently divided into clips so I can watch only the portions that interest me. Thanks, MTV!

    Lady Gaga is fucking crazy amazing. Loved everything about her performance/appearances.

    Adele was simply beautiful; that’s what real talent looks like, no flashy costumes or back-up dancers or wind machines, just a piano and a live performance of a gorgeous song.

  19. Question: Do you guys think maybe lots of people (ex. Glee Cast, Justin Timberlake) couldn’t make it because of the hurricane?


  20. 1) Biebs and Gomez are the cutest lesbian couple ever.

    2) You just made my life with that Anne Hatheway clip.

  21. I just googled “Selena Gomez Bisexual” and I like what I found. Lot’s of discussion about this on various types of websites/forums. Gives me hope. The thing that really does it for me (in relation to her) is NOT the fact that she is soooooo adorable (I mean, duh that is nice too) but she’s hilarious. Not just Wizards hilarious, but candid interviews and behind the scenes clips I’ve seen of her over the years just make me want to grab a few bottles of wine and crack jokes with her all night. Plus that laugh. Ahhh.

    Also what are ya’ll (ie my sister lesbians who prefer that style of dress/hair) going to do if the majority of teenage boys start dressing like that? And teenage lesbians. Wait. Ellen. She started it. I see Ellen when I see lesbieber. LESBIEBER. So everyone is Ellen now, including Bieber. I like it. Where am I going with this. I dunno I’m still thinking about Selena.

    Lesbieber sounds like a german/french beer collaboration that is served at room temp and makes you feel uber bloated.

  22. I literally did a double-take at the Bieber photo. Maybe he hired someone from LWLLJB as a body double? Could he and Gomez look more like a gay couple?

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