Black Panther and Stranger Things took top honors at the emotionally charged 2018 MTV Movie & TV Awards.
The superhero blockbuster was named Best Movie, while leading man Chadwick Boseman earned the titles of Best Performance in a Movie, Best Hero, and Best On-Screen Team, a prize he shared with co-stars Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, and Letitia Wright.
There was another accolade for fellow Black Panther star Michael B. Jordan as he claimed Best Villain, and he used his acceptance speech to take a jab at disgraced TV star Roseanne Barr.
“I’m shocked that I won this award for Best Villain,” he joked. “You know, I thought for sure Roseanne had that in the bag, you know. Crazy.”
The actor was referring to Barr’s controversial tweets about Valerie Jarrett, a former adviser to President Barack Obama, after comparing the African-American woman to an ape. The offensive message cost Barr her revamped hit sitcom, Roseanne, which was promptly canceled by ABC network chiefs.
While Jordan chose to go for the jugular, Boseman opted for the heartfelt, and decided to turn over his Best Hero accolade to James Shaw Jr., who intervened when a shooter opened fire in a Waffle House diner in Tennessee in April.
“Receiving an award for playing a superhero is amazing,” Boseman began. “But it’s even greater to acknowledge the heroes that we have in real life. So I just want to acknowledge somebody that’s here today, James Shaw Jr.”
Addressing James directly, he said, “You saved lives. So, this is gonna live at your house.”
The stars of Love, Simon, Nick Robinson and Keiynan Lonsdale, also made audiences smile after winning Best Kiss as Lonsdale, who plays a gay high school student in the film, encouraged people to embrace who they are.
“I just want to say to every kid, if you can live your dreams and wear dresses, you can live your dreams. You can live your dreams and kiss the one that you love no matter what gender they are,” he declared.
As the ceremony started to close, actress/writer Lena Waithe received the Trailblazer Award, which she dedicated to the subjects featured in the documentary Paris is Burning, which highlighted cross-dressers living in New York in the 1980s.
“A lot of people featured in this film are no longer with us, but their legacies will never die, because they live on in all of us…,” Waithe said from the stage. “Please look up to the sky and give thanks, because we owe them a huge debt of gratitude. They strutted through a brick wall so we wouldn’t have to.”
The sentiment continued when Chris Pratt accepted MTV’s Generation Award and imparted rules for his young fans to live by.
“Nobody is perfect,” he said in his lengthy speech. “People are going to tell you, ‘You’re perfect just the way you are.’ You’re not. You are imperfect. You always will be. But there is a powerful force that designed you that way. And it loves you. And if you’re willing to accept that, you will have grace.”
It was also a big night for Stranger Things, which was crowned Best TV Show, while Tiffany Haddish, who became the first black woman to host the annual gathering, had plenty to celebrate as she took home Best Comedic Performance for her breakout role in Girls Trip.
Held at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, California, the fan-voted prizegiving was filmed on Saturday, but the winners were kept under wraps until its broadcast on Monday.
The full list of winners for the MTV Movie and TV Awards is:
Best Movie: Black Panther
Best Show: Stranger Things
Best Performance in a Movie: Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther)
Best Performance in a Show: Millie Bobby Brown (Stranger Things)
Best Hero: Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther)
Best Villain: Michael B. Jordan (Black Panther)
Best Kiss: Love, Simon (Nick Robinson & Keiynan Lonsdale)
Most Frightened Performance: Noah Schnapp (Stranger Things)
Best On-Screen Team: Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright)
Best Comedic Performance: Tiffany Haddish (Girls Trip)
Scene Stealer: Madelaine Petsch (Riverdale)
Best Fight: Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot vs. German Soldiers)
Best Music Documentary: Gaga: Five Foot Two
Best Reality Series: Keeping Up With the Kardashians
Best Musical Moment: Stranger Things