BEST PERFORMANCE, NON-PRINCE TRIBUTE EDITION: Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar
Wind, water, fire — is there any element Queen B didn’t incorporate into her opening performance of “Freedom”? (Shut up, Earth! Nobody’s asking you!)
BEST PARODY: Hamilton-ish
Sure, we probably didn’t need another Hamilton parody at an award show, but we’d never say no to Tracee Ellis Ross twerking on co-host Anthony Anderson, 1776-style. (Favorite line: “Why does BET have us dressed like the white people from Roots?”)
CATCHIEST PSA: Terrence J
Terrence J’s “stay woke” mantra is kind of like P. Diddy’s classic “vote or die.” You know, for those who prefer their democracy without a side of death threats.
MOST IN NEED OF A NEW BACKDROP: Chloe x Halle
The Bey protégés slayed with their distinctive style(s) and offbeat “Drop.” But why did they perform their single flanked by potted plants with bedsheets hung behind them? Did their mentor break the bank with her own performance?
MOST MISLEADING STAGE NAME: Fat Joe
Come on, now — by America’s standards, you’re Medium-Sized Joe at best.
WONK-IEST OUTFIT: Spike Lee
I know he was paying tribute to Prince, but I have wonder exactly how many Oompa Loompas it took to dress Spike Lee for the BET Awards.
MOST TALENTED CATEGORY: Best Actress
Tracee Ellis Ross, Gabrielle Union, Taraji P. Henson, Kerry Washington and Viola Davis? Seriously, who slipped BET my secret list of dream Emmy nominees?
MOST IMPASSIONED SPEAKER: Jesse Williams
Accepting the Humanitarian Award, Grey’s Anatomy actor/activist Jesse Williams said, “We’re done watching waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind while extracting our culture… trying us on like costumes before discarding our bodies like rinds of strange fruit.”
CHEEKIEST 'WHO WORE IT BETTER' MOMENT: Janelle Monae vs. Anthony Anderson
Ah, those immortal Prince lyrics: "You don't have to have an ass to be my chaps."
WEIRDEST ACCEPTANCE SPEECH: Tina Knowles
After expressing her admiration for the evening's Prince tribute, Beyoncé's mom — who accepted the awards for her daughter, who hopped a plane immediately following her performance — added that we need to start giving our flowers to the living. “I’m hoping we will celebrate them while they’re alive," she concluded. (Ready, set, interpret!)