The MTV Movie Awards are a curious beast, in that the spectrum of movies they celebrate is rather… wide. Because of this broad scope, from Oscar contenders to sequels of sequels (of sequels), some of the nominees MTV pits against one another don’t quite seem to be on the same playing field. For instance, this year, Selma‘s David Oyelowo—who gave an incredible, stirring performance as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and got King’s Southern preacher dialect down like a tape-recorder—is up against The Maze Runner‘s Dylan O’Brien. As somebody who willingly admits to shedding tears during both movies (those Maze kids only have each other!), even I can see that this is not a fair fight. (Something like the 2002 battle for Best Female Performance, on the other hand—Britney Spears in Crossroads versus Mandy Moore in A Walk To Remember—was a nail-biter.)
To celebrate The MTV Movie Awards’ wacky standards, we’ve scrolled through the archives and found some of the most ridiculously imbalanced matchups:
Breakthrough Performance (2014)
Michael B. Jordan, Fruitvale Station
Will Poulter, We’re the Millers
Jordan’s character is wrongly killed in a San Francisco BART station. Poulter’s makes out with Jennifer Aniston (and Emma Roberts).
Best Jaw-Dropping Moment (2011)
James Franco cutting off his arm in 127 Hours
Justin Bieber’s “Performance Spectacular” in Justin Bieber: Never Say Never
Hey, they’re MTV’s words, not ours: Watching someone cut off his own arm is somehow comparable to watching Justin Bieber perform.
Breakout Star (2010)
Gabourey Sidibe, Precious
Zach Galifianakis, The Hangover
You could say that both characters really needed a friend, but we’re thinking Sidibe’s portrayal of an abused, illiterate, and pregnant teen was slightly more harrowing than Galifianakis’s search for his own wolfpack while carrying a sunglass-wearing baby.
Breakout Performance (2000)
Hilary Swank, Boys Don’t Cry
Shannon Elizabeth, American Pie
Swank embodied the struggles of her transgender character years before transgender people finally started to get their much-deserved screentime. Elizabeth played a hot foreign exchange student. She is pretty hot but… come on.
And for our favorite:
Breakout Performance (1992)
Anna Chlumsky, My Girl
Ice-T, New Jack City
Chlumsky is a little girl who cries that her pal Thomas J, who died of bee stings, won’t be able to see without his glasses. Ice-T is a cop who goes undercover to take down a drug dealer and crime kingpin. If these two switched roles, you would absolutely not be able to tell the difference.