By Jacob Williams
Pink’s been a pop powerhouse for nearly two decades, carving out a space for herself beyond the cookie-cutter mold of her contemporaries.
At the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, the 37-year-old Grammy winner will be presented with the Video Vanguard Award, celebrating a oeuvre of truly groundbreaking music videos. Below, we celebrate the occasion by calling out nine moments that typify what a badass Pink truly is.
1 “There You Go”
Pink burst onto the scene with her first video in 2000, and wasted no time setting the stage for the kind of pop star she planned to be. She casually crashes her motorcycle into the window of her ex’s bachelor pad, proving pop music had a new bad girl.
2 “Don’t Let Me Get Me”
Pink doubled down on her anti-pop star status with this video off her second album, Missundaztood. The line “tired of being compared to damn Britney Spears” proved once and for all that she wasn’t afraid to be different than her pop peers.
3 “Dear Mr. President”
In 2006, Pink released a song that served as an open letter to then-President Bush, asking him, “How do you sleep while the rest of us cry?” The collaboration with the Indigo Girls is unfortunately just as relevant today under the Trump administration.
4 “So What”
The pop star’s 2008 single “So What” served as a kiss off to her ex, Carey Hart. But what made it so badass? Oh, just the fact that she invited Hart to appear in the video without even telling him what it was about until he was on set. It all worked out, however, as the two are now married with two children.
Already nine years into her career, Pink stunned the 2009 VMAs with a jaw-dropping trapeze performance choreographed to “Sober.” She followed it up a few months later with an aerial silks routine at the Grammys that was ranked one of the best of the decade.
Oh, and she sang live both times. Bad. Ass.
6 HRC Speech
Pink has been a staunch supporter of LGBT rights from the beginning, earning her the Ally for Equality award at HRC’s National Dinner in 2010. In her poignant acceptance speech she declared, “With all the strife and economic woes in the world, religious intolerance, global warming—it boggles my mind that we’re spending time, energy, and money trying to ban love.”
7 “Raise Your Glass”
Pink once again celebrated being different with a video that features two men kissing. “Raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways,” indeed.
Pink’s athletic prowess was once again on display in the video for “Try,” filled with strenuous choreography she recreated live at the 2012 American Music Awards.
As a bonus, her dance partner is incredibly sexy.
9 “What About Us”
Pink’s newest video is another bold political statement—gathering people marginalized in our current political climate, including an intimate routine between two male dancers.
Seventeen years after Pink told us she was “Coming Up,” it’s clear she’s on top—and she’s not going anywhere.
Watch the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards, Sunday, August 27, at 8/7c on Logo and MTV