TGJ’s Top 10: Videos Snubbed By 2020 MTV VMAs

Published: Thursday 30th Jul 2020 by Rashad

It’s that time of year again!

The air is still buzzing as Thursday (July 30) brought with it the highly anticipated 2020 MTV VMA nominations.

But, what also came with the announcement were jaw-dropping surprises, snubs, and all out “shut-outs.”

While fans of Lady Gaga, Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift, and The Weeknd are singing the network’s praises for the recognition bestowed upon their 2019 and 2020 hits, supporters of Nicki Minaj, Camila Cabello, Beyoncé, and more aren’t joining that chorus.

Look inside to see our picks for this year’s biggest and most unjust snubs:

(In no particular order)

Camila Cabello’s ‘Liar’

Deception! Disgrace!

One of the best music videos of the last few years, Camila Cabello’s mini-movie for 2019’s ‘Liar’ – the first single from her sophomore album ‘Romance’ – was easily one of the year’s most watchable musical clips.

Upping the conceptual ante from its ‘Havana’ predecessor, ‘Liar’ (in video and musical scheme) was designed to be the Young Thug-assisted tune’s more sophisticated sister.

Apparently MTV, which awarded ‘Havana’ the ‘Video of the Year’ trophy at its 2018 ceremony, disagreed as it was totally omitted from the list of nods.

Bad Bunny’s ‘Yo Perreo Sola’

Bad Bunny‘s ‘Yo Perreo Sola’ video is the stuff VMA fodder is made of.

Not only is it visually appealing, but it pushes a social envelope that few of his male counterparts would dare.  Yet, our friends at MTV felt it best to limit the clip’s representation to the “Latin” category on this year’s list of nods.

Normani’s ‘Motivation’

She may have rocked the house with the song’s first live iteration at the 2019 VMAs, but that didn’t do Normani any favors when the list of 2020 nominees was printed.

Upon its debut late last year, the Dave Meyers-directed clip for ‘Motivation’ had tongues wagging for its high-octane choreography.  Fittingly, that’s the category it was nominated in for this year’s ceremony.

However, we would’ve appreciated a bit more recognition.

Dua Lipa’s ‘Break My Heart’

In all fairness, Dua Lipa is well represented on this year’s list of nods as she was credited four nominations (Best Choreography, Best Art Direction, Best Visual Effects, and Best Direction).

However, a few heads (ours included) were tilted and scratched when ‘Break My Heart’ wasn’t named as the video beside said nominations despite being the most visually arresting among its era’s releases.

Only ‘Physical’ and ‘Don’t Start Now’ nabbed nods.

Harry Styles’ ‘Adore You’

Harry Styles‘Adore You’ is unquestionably one of the most memorable male music videos of the past 10 years.  As such, it made sense to see it listed in the ‘Best Art Direction,’ ‘Best Direction,’ and ‘Best Visual Effects’ categories.

However, the wins – if any of them are awarded – would not go to Harry but would instead sit on the mantels of the team who engineered the video.

As one of the standout male Pop performers of the day, we can’t help but shake our head that he didn’t receive any artist nods.

Beyoncé’s ‘Spirit’

Beyoncé’s ‘Spirit’ was an engaging affair chockfull of gripping cinematography, costuming, choreography, and breathtaking views of natural Arizona scenery.

The ‘Lion King: The Gift’-lifted tune’s video was praised by critics as an unapologetic homage to Mother Africa – a theme that dominates its parent visual project, ‘Black Is King‘ (click here to see the trailer).

We guess the lauding stopped there, for ‘Spirit’ must be invisible if it is listed among this year’s MTV VMA nominees.

Chris Brown & Drake’s ‘No Guidance’

Chris Brown and Drake made headlines for putting their longstanding beef aside to create one of 2019’s biggest R&B hits, ‘No Guidance.’

Thanks to its comedic, yet cinematic music video, the tune became Brown’s highest charting hit in over a decade (click here to read more).  A list the clip apparently did not chart high on was the shortlist for  MTV’s 2020 VMAs.

Given its release date (which was after last year’s cut off for nods but before the 2019 ceremony), it’s easy to believe the video – which is among Brown’s best – was just forgotten in the fray.

Lil Nas X’s ‘Panini’

After earning an out-of-this-world hit with his debut single, ‘Old Town Road,’ It was only fitting Lil Nas X would deliver an out-of-this-world music video for its intergalactic follow-up, ‘Panini.’

Directed by Mike Diva, the clip – which famously guest stars Skai Jackson – saw X ramp up budget, choreography, and costumes.

The collection of moves must’ve left the peeps at MTV unimpressed as ‘Panini’ was not listed among this year’s Moonmen contenders.

Camila Cabello’s ‘My Oh My’

While Camila’s ‘My Oh My’ did nab a nomination in the ‘Best Cinematography’ category, it – like ‘Liar’ before it – was one of the most engaging visual offerings of the last year.  The consistency is not only a nod to Camila, but also to the two clips’ director – Dave Meyers.

The songs that accompanied the videos may have not made the most enduring impact on the Hot 100, but there is no denying the cinematic quality housed in their promotional visuals.

Megan Thee Stallion & Normani – ‘Diamonds’

Mallet-wielding mavens Megan Thee Stallion and Normani may not have knocked ‘Diamonds’ out of the Hot 100 park, but the visual was a clear homerun.

The first single from the flightless ‘Birds of Prey’ soundtrack, ‘Diamonds’ video served everything fans needed it to be and more:  high octane choreography, costuming, action, and a jaw-dropping set.  This is why our jaws dropped when we didn’t see the video shining amongst VMA nominees.


Honorable Mentions


Missy Elliott’s ‘Throw It Back’

Missy Elliott tapped director Daniel Russell to helm her comeback music video for ‘Throw It Back.’

A visual affair that rightfully sits beside some of the Hip Hop legend’s best clips ever, elements from the video were reenacted live at last year’s VMA when she took the stage to accept the VMA Video Vanguard Award.

We definitely would have appreciated seeing her name somewhere on the coveted list of nods.

Other honorable mentions include:

  • Pussycat Dolls – ‘React’
  • Selena Gomez’ – ‘Boyfriend’
  • Teyana Taylor – ‘How You Want It?’
  • Roddy Ricch – ‘The Box’ (for Video of the Year)
  • Sam Smith & Demi Lovato – ‘I’m Ready’
  • Megan Thee Stallion, Nicki Minaj, & Ty Dolla $ign – ‘Hot Girl Summer’
  • Ariana Grande, Lana Del Rey, and Miley Cyrus – ‘Don’t Call Me Angel’


Your thoughts?

Comments 25

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  1. Clarks0o0ñ July 30, 2020

    TGJ praising not 1 but 2 Camila cabello videos.

    Rashad I always knew u had taste. Ur a real journalist. U kept all the unnecessary drama surrounding Camila aside and focused on the art. No prejudice, u are not biased or partial , u spoke the truth

    My oh my and liar are great pop videos with good VFX special effects.

    Camila makes great music videos.

    • FLOP IS KING July 30, 2020

      lmaoo except their two cents dont matter, the VMAs word counts. and they dont know that flop camiltoe flopbelly or her 4 times flopped Nomance album or its flop singles lmoooo, u need to find a new fave hon, yours will be back at taco bell before the year is done lmaooooo

      • Clarks0o0ñ July 30, 2020

        Gurl, Camila has won video of the year for Havana.

        She has also won best collaboration for senorita and artist of the year

        Be quiet. 🤡

      • FLOP IS KING July 30, 2020

        lmaooo then she shoulda been a no brainer this time, except young thug and shawn mendes couldnt help her from flopping this time, so VMA dont know that flopped h0 lmaoooo. now shut up flop groupie lmaooooo

    • E-V-E Liplock July 30, 2020

      I agree with Clark. Rashad is neutral and good writer.

  2. Erica July 30, 2020

    MTV been doing this! It’s never been about the videos. They nominate who’s popular at the moment to try to secure ratings. They have always giving out awards for people who didn’t deserve them including Beyonce

  3. Bebo+p. July 30, 2020

    Totally agree is crazy how savage got nomination without a video I don’t get it

    All those videos in this list should have more nominations.

  4. FLOP IS KING July 30, 2020

    lmaooooo did the roaches really think #949yonce was gonna get nominated for that bubbling under flop? lmfaoooooooo

    • You’re Gagging Bih July 31, 2020

      Ooooohhhh it’s you “SMH” lmao was wondering where Beyoncé biggest fan disappeared to! You can always tell cause you say the same boring s*** every year saying how she floppped buuutt every year she’s on top in the news lmao get a hobby

  5. Clarks0o0ñ July 30, 2020

    Beyonce spirit should have been nominated for

    Best choreography
    Best cinematography
    Best editing
    Best visual effects
    Best rnb video

    • FLOP IS KING July 30, 2020

      lmaoooooo except it was as big a flop as nomance and its 1000 singles, so theres that lmfaooooo

  6. Ask4yall July 30, 2020

    Well done MTV. They were not at all worth it

  7. Fancy BISH July 30, 2020

    Cammy snubbed kii kii 🤣

    • Clarks0o0ñ July 30, 2020

      My oh my- best .cinematography

      Cry 🤣

      • Fancy BISH July 30, 2020

        Thank DaBaby, please say DaBaby kii 🤣

      • Clarks0o0ñ July 30, 2020

        Da baby has never won a vma in his life

        Camila has won 3 vmas including video of the year and artist of the year

        Cry more 🤣

      • Fancy BISH July 30, 2020

        But Cammy’s not a main girl tho *Azealia Banks voice* 🤣

      • FLOP IS KING July 30, 2020

        lmaooo and da baby had a #1 hit by himself, camiltoe cant relate, his charity song with her flopped hard lmfaooooo

  8. Paulo July 30, 2020

    Lil Nas X and Dua the real snubs Harry and Chris Brown could’ve gathered one nom or two but everything else is a bit of a reach. Motivation is a great video but the song didn’t chart long enough to be remembered, had it been steadily promoted it would’ve been mentioned. 🤷🏼‍♀️

  9. Susan July 30, 2020

    Why are you all including a racist on the list? And TWICE?!

    • Clarks0o0ñ July 30, 2020

      The girls are mad MAD

      • Fancy BISH July 30, 2020

        Nah, we waiting on Black Is King 🤳🏽

  10. Brat July 30, 2020

    The VMAs are soooo 2003 who cares

  11. i hate whyy n blacc July 31, 2020

    right and tory lanez or his people should not be there in the audience

  12. menudi July 31, 2020

    Now ya’ll damn well know Spirit was a borefest! But this a Beyonce sponsored blog!

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