The VMA Trophy Isn't a Moonman Anymore — It's a Moon *Person*
At the beginning of the 2019 VMAs Monday night, Cardi B unwrapped what many thought was a blanket carrying her daughter, Kulture. Instead, it was the symbol of the Video Music Awards: the Moon Person.
Moon Person might be a new term to people who have watched the VMAs for years, and that's because for many years it used to be the Moonman. The trophy got a gender-neutral makeover before last year's awards ceremony.
“Why should it be a man?” Chris McCarthy, president of MTV, told theNew York Timesin 2019. “It could be a man, it could be a woman, it could be transgender, it could be nonconformist.” The decision also came around the same time the MTV Movie and TV awards stopped separating their acting categories by gender.
The Moonman trophy has been around since the start of the VMAs. When the network started in 1981, it launched with footage of Apollo 11 blasting off into space, and an astronaut planting a flag with the MTV logo on the moon's surface. “Ladies and gentlemen, rock and roll," a voiceover noted, and the rest was history. That footage played every hour on MTV for the first five years of the network's history.
MTV's new gender neutrality reflects the music industry's push for LGBTQ representation and gender equality. And that was already seen in the early awards handed out Monday night. The winner for Push Artist of the Year, Hayley Kiyoko, shouted out women like her looking to make it in music. "This validates any queer woman of color that you can follow your dream," she said in her acceptance speech.
Video: Meet the man behind MTV's Moon Man
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