There were three performances that carried the rest of MTV's VMAs, by our reckoning. So you can sit through a lot of awkward joking between presenters, and the disappointing Jay-Z/Kanye West number, and whatever that mess was with the "Jersey Shore" women and Cloris Leachman, if you insist.
But we recapped the whole show, and we'd recommend you just watch the three songs below. Lady Gaga's was the most ambitious, Beyonce's the most joyous, and Adele's simply beautiful.
Lady Gaga and Brian May, "You And I":
Beyonce, "Love on Top":
Adele, "Someone Like You":
Still here? Okay, then watch Lil Wayne's performance of "How to Love/John." His energy (and pants) are amazing, but the censors kind of kill his momentum.