Ariana Grande Is Competing Against Herself At The VMAs — Will It Work In Her Favour?

Emilee Lindner,
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Ariana Grande is nominated against herself this year for the VMA for Best Collaboration. It makes sense — why would you have one Ari when you can have two? She’s vying for a Moonman with The Weeknd for their song “Love Me Harder” and with Nicki Minaj and Jessie J for their song “Bang Bang.” She’s competing against Taylor Swift, Mark Ronson and Wiz Khalifa.

But since she’s nominated twice in this category, what does this do to her chances of winning? Are the odds in her favor? Will it split the vote? I looked back at VMA history to see how this has played out in the past. Let’s take a look!

2012 — Kanye West — Lost

kanye west

Nominees: Best Hip-Hop Video
Winner: Drake ft. Lil Wayne — “HYFR”
Childish Gambino — “Heartbeat”
Jay-Z and Kanye West — “Paris”
Nicki Minaj ft. 2 Chainz — “Beez in the Trap”
Kanye West ft. Pusha T, Big Sean and 2 Chainz — “Mercy”

Kanye was up for his Watch The Throne track “Paris” with Jay Z, competing against himself with his video for “Mercy,” which featured Pusha T, Big Sean and 2 Chainz. In the end, ’Ye ended up losing to Drake.

2010 — Lady Gaga — Won


Nominees: Video Of The Year
Winner: Lady Gaga — “Bad Romance”
Thirty Seconds to Mars — “Kings and Queens”
B.o.B ft. Hayley Williams — “Airplanes”
Eminem — “Not Afraid”
Florence and the Machine — “Dog Days Are Over”
Lady Gaga ft. Beyoncé — “Telephone”

Gaga won VOTY in 2010 for “Bad Romance,” beating out herself. Her “Telephone” video with Bey was in the running, too, but the “Thelma & Louise”-themed video wasn’t enough for bathtubs, corpses and big eyes.

2001 — Missy Elliott — Won

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Nominees: Video Of The Year
Winner: Christina Aguilera, Lil’ Kim, Mýa and Pink ft. Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott — “Lady Marmalade”
Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott — “Get Ur Freak On”
Eminem ft. Dido — “Stan”
Fatboy Slim — “Weapon of Choice”
Janet Jackson — “All for You”
U2 — “Beautiful Day”

I don’t know if I should count “Lady Marmalade” as Missy’s song, because technically she’s featured. If I included every feature on this list, it would be a snooze fest. But let’s face it, Missy produced this track and it’s every bit hers. Anyway. “Lady Marmalade” went up against “Get Your Freak On” in 2001 and won. You go, Missy.

1988 — U2 — Lost

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Nominees: Video Of The Year
Winner: INXS — “Need You Tonight/Mediate”
George Harrison — “When We Was Fab”
Bruce Springsteen — “Tunnel of Love”
U2 — “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”
U2 — “Where the Streets Have No Name”

U2 battled themselves in 1988, but in the end, INXS won. The gap from the ’80s to the aughts is significant since it seems like collaborations become more frequent and expected as time went on. In the ’80s, when two songs were nominated for the same category, the band was the sole artist. INXS also won in the Best Group video, where U2 was also nominated twice.

1987 — Bruce Springsteen — Lost


Nominees: Best Stage Performance in a Video
Winner: Bon Jovi — “Livin’ on a Prayer”
Bon Jovi — “You Give Love a Bad Name”
Run-D.M.C. ft. Aerosmith — “Walk This Way”
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band — “Born to Run”
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band — “War”

Bruce was nominated twice for Best Stage Performance in a Video, a category that doesn’t even exist anymore. But fellow New Jerseyan Jon Bon Jovi out-rocked both of the songs.

1986 — The Talking Heads — Lost

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Nominees: Best Concept Video
Winner: a-ha — “Take on Me”
Dire Straits — “Money for Nothing”
Godley & Creme — “Cry”
Talking Heads — “And She Was”
Talking Heads — “Road to Nowhere”

Again, the Talking Heads were no match for themselves — or a-ha — at the 1986 awards, when they lost their grip on Best Concept Video.

1985 — David Lee Roth — Lost

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Nominees: Video of the Year
Winner: Don Henley — “The Boys of Summer”
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers — “Don’t Come Around Here No More”
David Lee Roth — “California Girls”
David Lee Roth — “Just a Gigolo/I Ain’t Got Nobody”
USA for Africa — “We Are the World”

David Lee Roth and David Lee Roth couldn’t match up to the power that was Don Henley’s “The Boys of Summer.” That song is just as popular in bars now than it was back then.

Roth’s two songs were also up for Best Male Video that year, but Bruce Springsteen took that one. See? Bruce had his moment.

1985 — Lindsey Buckingham — Lost

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Nominees: Most Experimental Video
Winner: Art of Noise — “Close (To the Edit)”
Lindsey Buckingham — “Go Insane”
Lindsey Buckingham — “Slow Dancing”
Chris Isaak — “Dancin’”
Lone Justice — “Ways to Be Wicked”

Art of Noise ended up winning Most Experimental Video (also, R.I.P. that category), but it turns out, Lindsay Buckingham had some non-Fleetwood Mac stuff he wanted to try out.

1984 — Cyndi Lauper — Won


Nominees: Best Female Video
Winner: Cyndi Lauper — “Girls Just Want to Have Fun”
Pat Benatar — “Love Is a Battlefield”
Cyndi Lauper — “Time After Time”
Bette Midler — “Beast of Burden”
Donna Summer — “She Works Hard for the Money”

Cyndi Lauper beat herself! Woo! Along with Pat Benatar, Bette Midler and Donna Summer in the first-ever VMAs. However, when it came to Best New Artist In A Video, both of her entries lost to the Eurythmics.

In conclusion, the results are mixed for twice-nominated artists. But, if you look at the trend, it seems like women have won, and men have lost. So, Ariana, you have a chance!

Of course, we’ll never know how it goes down until the show, so tune in on August 30 at 9e/6p to see how everything rolls out.