FearlessRiOT Forecast: 2015 MTV Video Music Awards

The 2015 MTV Video Music Awards are this Sunday LIVE on MTV. This has always been one of my favorite award shows; it’s one of the most exciting and unpredictable shows to watch. Maybe not as much as it used to be, but it’s still a lot of fun to watch. And the 2015 installment is sure to be a crazy one as Miley Cyrus is the host of the night and the parents TV groups are quaking in their boots at what she might do. Recently, I started the FearlessRiOT Forecast as a way to predict who would come out victorious at WWE pay-per-view events. But why just let them have all the fun? It’s time to give the Forecast treatment to award shows too! I pretty much plan to only do music award shows; I don’t watch every TV show and I don’t have the money to see every movie nominated at those kinds of award shows, so they’re off the hook (except for possibly the MTV Movie Awards, but we’ll see about that.) So what better award show to start with than the biggest one on the MTV calendar? Who would I love to see take home the moonman and who actually will? Let’s get started!

[Note: I left out the technical categories; no offense to the hard workers nominated for them, but those awards are never televised and most viewers barely pay any mind to them. So only the major categories in this one.]

Best Male Video

Nick Jonas vs. Kendrick Lamar vs. Mark Ronson vs. Ed Sheeran vs. The Weeknd

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This past year, Nick Jonas made a successful comeback as a solo star after the official disbanding of The Jonas Brothers; his hit record “Jealous”, though, was overlooked in favor of his video for “Chains”. Meanwhile, Ed Sheeran kept his hit streak going with the slow dancing video for “Thinking Out Loud”; The Weeknd also went the slow-dancing, romantic (maybe?) route for his 50 Shades of Grey single “Worth It”. Mark Ronson & Bruno Mars went retro with the “Uptown Funk” video and K. Dot’s “Alright” was a powerful video with a social message.

Who I Want to Win: Ed Sheeran ain’t learn that ballroom dancing for nothing; he gets my vote.

Who Will Win: Either Ed Sheeran or Kendrick Lamar. I could see Nick Jonas winning if the Jonas Brothers’ old fans still have enough demonstrated interest in him as a solo star at this point.

Best Female Video:

Beyoncé vs. Ellie Goulding vs. Nicki Minaj vs. Sia vs. Taylor Swift

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All of these nominees are full-on pop stars with three in-particular being more than household names with interesting concepts for videos. Beyoncé’s 7/11 was a lighthearted clip where she just wanted to have some fun, Taylor Swift makes fun of the public perception many seem to have of her in over-the-top fashion, and Nicki Minaj wanted to celebrate the fuller female form in the middle of a jungle. Not to count out Sia and Ellie; Ellie gets her slow dance on (so many slow-dance songs and videos lately) and Sia casts Maddie Ziegler and Shia LaBeouf for a bizarre cage performance (by the way, why is it that Shia climbed that cage better than any X-Division wrestler ever?)

Who I Want to Win: I voted for Taylor and I stand by that choice.

Who Will Win: Since this is fan-voted, I think it depends on who votes harder between the Swifties, the Barbs, and the BeyHive. I get the feeling, though, that it’s gonna be Beyoncé.

Artist to Watch:

James Bay vs. George Ezra vs. Fetty Wap vs. FKA Twigs vs. Vance Joy

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This was the hardest category for me to predict, both before and after I researched the nominees. Before researching them, I had only known one song by Ezra, Wap, or Joy (their nominated videos “Budapest”, “Trap Queen”, and “Riptide”) yet I hadn’t heard any music from Bay or Twigs. So I listened to some of all of their discographies; can’t say I was left in awe of any of their catalogs, but there is still an audience for these performers at the end of the day. I must say though that I may not have heard any FKA Twigs songs before this, but I was aware of her existence due to headlines with Robert Pattinson and Twitter hearsay.

Who I Want to Win: At this point in time, I guess either Fetty Wap (because “Trap Queen” goes hard musically) or George Ezra (because along with “Budapest”, his song “Did You Hear The Rain?” was pretty damn epic).

Who Will Win: I see only one of three potential winners: Fetty Wap (because of the success of “Trap Queen”), Vance Joy (cause he has the Taylor Swift seal of approval), or FKA Twigs (I wasn’t a big fan of what I heard from her, I know there are people out there who are fans and likely voted for her). In the end, I’m going with Fetty due to his mainstream attention, and maybe we’ll see yet another emotionally passionate acceptance speech from him.

Best Pop Video:

Beyoncé vs. Maroon 5 vs. Mark Ronson vs. Ed Sheeran vs. Taylor Swift

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The videos nominated for Best Pop Video represent some of the biggest stars in music today and the impact they left on the charts in the past year. Beyoncé wasn’t afraid to just let lose and make a simple, fun little music video while Ed Sheeran went grand with a ballroom dancing routine. Taylor Swift went the comedic route while Mark Ronson & Bruno Mars went retro. And Maroon 5 decided to go ahead and surprise some about-to-be newlyweds.

Who I Want to Win: Taylor Swift may have a blank space in her trophy case just waiting for this moonman.

Who Will Win: And I feel like that blank space will be filled. It’s Taylor’s for the taking!

Best Rock Video:

Arctic Monkeys vs. Fall Out Boy vs. Florence + The Machine vs. Hozier vs. Walk the Moon

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This one sparked some controversy because the Arctic Monkey’s video “Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High?” is two years old, so it’s eligibility has come into question. Is it cause not enough other good rock videos came out this year worthy of a nomination? No, and here’s Loudwire with some overlooked rock and metal videos this year. But staying with the nominees, it’s really not a bad field. Hozier’s “Take Me To Church” was big, the dance party in “Shut Up and Dance” looked like a ton of fun, Florence’s video was as amazing as you’d expect, and apparently, being an assistant for Fall Out Boy seems like a pretty cool job.

Who I Want to Win: I’d be cool if it were either Fall Out Boy or Florence + The Machine

Who Will Win: Fall Out Boy because again, it’s fan-voted and Fall Out Boy (three-time VMA winners already) has the established fanbase. Only other video I can see winning is Walk The Moon’s because of how big “Shut Up and Dance” was.

Best Hip-Hop Video:

Big Sean vs. Fetty Wap vs. Kendrick Lamar vs. Nicki Minaj vs. Wiz Khalifa

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With the exception of “Alright”, this is a field of Top 20 hits, which could play a hand in determining who wins (this is a video award, but we all know the song and artist’s name recognition play just as big a part of who actually wins, especially with the fan-voting factor). Fetty Wap’s video wasn’t much different from other videos by typical YouTube rappers, but again, the song was a smash. Wiz Khalifa’s video was a touching tribute to Paul Walker and his Fast & Furious franchise character while Nicki Minaj’s video was an eccentric tribute to the “bitches with a fat ass in the club” (her words, not mine). Kendrick Lamar’s was eye-catching and insightful while Big Sean’s a ton of fun on the football field.

Who I Want to Win: I’d really love to see Kendrick get this moonman.

Who Will Win: Oh, my God, Nicki. Look at your moonman. It is so shiny.

Best Collaboration:

Ariana & Weeknd vs. Jessie, Ariana, & Nicki vs. Mark & Bruno vs. Taylor & Kendrick vs. Wiz & Charlie

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Ariana Grande sure does love to collaborate with people, as illustrated by the fact that she’s in this category twice. Once is for a sexy duet with The Weeknd and the other is for a louder, sexier, catchier pop jam known as “Bang Bang”. A duet that’s just as catchy is “Uptown Funk”, a song that spent 14 weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and should statistically be considered the favorite. But two other songs that made it to #1 are “Bad Blood” and “See You Again”; while “Bad Blood” is a song that’s been polarizing even within the Swiftie fanbase, “See You Again” is wildly loved, especially due to its sentimental connection to the Furious 7 film and it’s tribute to the late Paul Walker.

Who I Want to Win: “Uptown Funk” and “Bang Bang” are my favorite songs nominated and I’d love to see either of them honored.

Who Will Win: I wanna say “Bang Bang” due to the combined voting power of the Barbs and the Arianators, but I honestly believe that we’ll see Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth taking home VMAs for the first time on Sunday.

Best Video With A Social Mesasge:

Big Sean vs. Colbie Caillat vs. Jennifer Hudson vs. Rihanna vs. Wale

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MTV introduced this award in 2011 and it has stuck around due to the fact that artists have become more socially conscious over the years and often use their videos as a platform to speak on important issues. Among the 2015 nominees, Big Sean created a deeply personal tune about the power to make a difference with a video dedicated to his late grandmother. Colbie Caillat‘s music video is one about the acceptance of beauty and showing how going au naturale is nothing to be ashamed of. (Fun Fact: This is Colbie’s first VMA nomination, which is kind of shocking when you consider that “Bubbly” got big in 2007.) Jennifer Hudson created a clip promoting same-sex relationships. Rihanna‘s video is a look at the American dream, mixed with iconic imagery showing how we got to where we are today as a people. And while a pair of fresh, white shoes may play a huge part in Wale‘s video, “Air Force Ones” this is not; it works as a symbolic metaphor about image and public perception.

Who I Want to Win: Colbie Caillat, Rihanna, or Big Sean.

Who Will Win: Likely Rihanna; this category is also fan-voted and Rihanna has the sizeable fanbase needed to take it home. I expect Big Sean to be a wildcard pick, though.

Song of the Summer:

5 Seconds of Summer vs. David Guetta vs. Demi Lovato vs. Fetty Wap vs. Fifth Harmony vs. Major Lazer vs. OMI vs. Selena Gomez vs. Silento vs. Jack U vs. Taylor Swift vs. The Weeknd

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MTV gave out this award in 2013 and it went to One Direction. Now it’s back and it’s basically been a two horse race from the beginning as Fifth Harmony and 5 Seconds of Summer have been in the lead from the jump. And I can’t say I’m surprised. At last year’s VMA’s, the five-girl team of Normani, Camilla, Lauren, Dinah, Ally won Artist to Watch over Luke, Michael, Calum, & Ashton. The 5SOS fandom wasn’t very happy about this and the two fandoms have feuded on-and-off since then. It hasn’t been pretty. Trust me. 5SOS would then beat 5H for an MTV Europe Music Award, but 5H then beat 5SOS for a Kids Choice Award. If the voting is any indication, this will continue to be another chapter in this on-going saga as both groups are FAR ahead in votes over #1 hits from The Weeknd, Taylor Swift, and OMI and the other respectably charting hits in the category (even the power of Bieber on “Where Are U Now” can’t surpass these two groups).

Who I Want to Win: I’ve been voting for two songs here (shockingly, neither is Taylor because I already know she’s gonna win some other stuff, so let someone else have this one). Demi Lovato’s “Cool for the Summer” is the most summer anthem-sounding song here and I love it. Fifth Harmony’s “Worth It” is still in second-place and I’ve been jamming to it all summer; my favorite song from the X-Factor girl group to date (or at least it was before this catchy ditty came along). Either winning would be fine with me.

Who Will Win: I’ll let the 5H and 5SOS fans decide this; 5SOS fans are in the lead now and are definitely well on their way to victory, but do not underestimate those dedicated Harmonizers.

Video of the Year:

Beyoncé vs. Ed Sheeran vs. Kendrick Lamar vs. Mark Ronson vs. Taylor Swift

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I was totally shocked to see “Anaconda” not up for this award (and I heard it through the social media grapevine that Nicki Minaj was pretty peeved about it), but the five videos nominated definitely left an impact as well. Beyoncé‘s video looked like it was filmed on an iPhone and edited in Windows Movie Maker, but she can get away with it cause 1) she’s Queen Bey and 2) it looked like she had a ton of fun doing it. Ed Sheeran went ballroom dancing to a romantic, soulful little ditty. Kendrick Lamar’s video was very powerful and creative and widely praised upon release. Mark Ronson‘s video was all kind of retro from the sets to the cars to the sound to Bruno Mars‘ pink blazer (OK, maybe he was just taking fashion cues from Mark Henry). And Taylor Swift‘s video was basically a trailer for an action movie that’ll never see the light of day; but with appearances from the likes of Hayley Williams, Ellie Goulding, and Zendaya, I’d probably see it if they made this an actual feature.

Who I Want to Win: Taylor Swift’s action movie trailer or Kendrick Lamar’s black-and-white reality check.

Who I Want to Win: Taylor Swift likely has this one in the bag. And hey, what a VMA moment it would be if she called for a truce with Katy Perry during her speech? Yeah, I know it’s highly unlikely, but again, it’s the VMAs and you just never know!

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