Most memorable VMA moments

DARRYL STERDAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:44 AM ET

Lesbian antics. Drunken brawls. Crashed parties. Bad decisions. Pregnancy revelations.

No, it’s not a recap of last week’s Jersey Shore. (OK, it probably is, but that’s not the point.) We’re talking about MTV’s other bastion of sophistication and decorum: The Video Music Awards.

Let’s be honest: Nobody watches the VMAs to see which clip takes the Moonman for Best Art Direction, Cinematography or Choreography. Everybody tunes in to see what the stars are wearing (or not), who they’re feuding with and how long Kanye, Britney or Gaga can go without doing something outrageous, stupid or outrageously stupid.

Based on history, it will most likely happen before the first commercial break. So be sure to tune in promptly at 7 p.m. Eastern on Thursday Sept. 6, when the 2012 MTV VMAs air live on MuchMusic. Drake and Rihanna have the most noms this year, followed by other major players like Katy Perry, Beyonce, Adele, M.I.A. and The Black Keys, along with new faces like Lana Del Rey, Gotye, A$AP Rocky, Frank Ocean, One Direction, The Wanted and Imagine Dragons. Also new: Lady Gaga and Madonna were both snubbed this year, so they should be in good moods.

Here’s hoping one of them does something half as crazy as these 12 memorable moments from previous MTV VMAs:

12 | Van Halen Come Back — & Break Up (1996)

After announcing their reunion onstage during the awards, the California rockers reportedly split up backstage. Does Guinness have a record for Shortest Comeback?

11 | Rager Rages Against Nothing in Particular (2000)

For no apparent reason, Rage Against the Machine bassist Tim Commerford climbed up to the top of the set and wouldn’t come down. Way to Occupy the VMAs, jackass.

10 | Jacko Smooches Lisa Marie (1994)

Sure, they were already married at the time. That didn’t make it any less icky when Michael Jackson bussed his bride Lisa Marie Presley.

9 | Kid Rock Sissy-Fights Tommy Lee Over Pam (2007)

Two white-trash dudes scrapping it out over a buxom, bottle-blonde bimbo. If they were shirtless, it would have been an episode of COPS.

8 | Gaga Does Drag (2011)

As if she weren’t colourful enough already, Gaga spent most of the show in drag as moustached guido Jo Calderone. Thankfully, her act didn’t extend to sleeping with Snooki. We hope.

7 | Beyonce Does the Bump (2011)

Sasha Fierce capped a typically energized performance by unveiling her bouncing baby bump. Message: Even pregnant, Beyonce works harder than you do.

6 | Britney Goes Snake (2001)

Brit-Brit’s performance of I’m a Slave 4 U included an albino python (reportedly named Banana) and a green harem-girl outfit. Insert your own ‘snake-charmer’ joke here.

5 | Diana Ross Fondles Lil Kim (1999)

When rapper Lil’ Kim emerged wearing a pasty, the Supreme diva offered her some enthusiastic support. Why Miss Ross, we had no idea you swung that way.

4 | Britney Goes Bad (2007)

Roaming around the stage like a distracted stripper while lip-synching Gimme More, an overweight, listless Britney made us all want less. Iconic for all the wrong reasons.

3 | Gaga Has a Cow (2010)

Every awards show features fashion choices of questionable taste. But Gaga’s red-meat gown was undoubtedly the only one that could have been improved with BBQ sauce.

2 | Kanye Bum-Rushes Taylor’s Show (2009)

Who can forget Mr. Humble bolting onstage to snatch the mic from Swift and sing Beyonce’s praises? At least it was the one time Swifty’s slack-jawed yokel routine rang true.

1 | Madonna Tongues Britney & Xtina (2003)

Answering the prayers of a million teenage boys, Madonna locked lips with Britney and Xtina during their performance of … um, sorry, what was I saying?


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