Beyonce Knowles
Credit: Edward Linsmier/Getty Images; Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Tonight, you could gawk at one of the year’s biggest pageants, a spectacle featuring bold-faced names performing for an audience of celebrities and fashion victims… or you could watch the Video Music Awards. Nailed it!

True, MTV has moved up the VMAs so they don’t conflict with President Obama’s speech in the 10 p.m. hour. But watching the awards instead of the convention would still mean missing big moments like a speech from noted politician Eva Longoria, remarks delivered by World’s Least Boring Man John Kerry, and countless Joe Biden reaction shots. Then again, if you pick the convention, you risk not knowing which stars are pregnant and which ones are draped in snakes or desperation or whatever.

Decisions, decisions! Luckily, EW is here to help determine which major television event is right for you. Here’s our handy-dandy guide:

If you’re between the ages of 18 and 29, watch the VMAs

If you’re already an Obama supporter (and polls show he has a pretty decent lead with younger voters), you’re probably also constantly being bombarded with irritating, donation-soliciting campaign emails. Take the night off? Yes, you can.

If you’re bad at resisting catchy hooks, watch the DNC

Taylor Swift is performing at the VMAs, and chances are she’ll sing “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.” One Direction will also be there, and at least one rendition of “What Makes You Beautiful” is a safe bet. Save your sanity by focusing on the convention, an event likely to be free of earworms.

If you’re already sick of Invisible Obama jokes, watch the VMAs

Kal Penn made one Tuesday night, and it’s fair to reason that more speakers will follow his lead Thursday. There’s no guarantee that VMA host Kevin Hart won’t take a jab at Clint Eastwood — but his will probably be funnier than Montana governor Brian Schweitzer’s.

If you love Beyoncé, watch the DNC

Tricked you there! Bey is a huge fan of the Obamas, so she’d probably want you to pay attention to their party. And we should all do what Beyoncé tells us to do. [puts everything I own in a box to the left]

If you’re a fan of kickass musical sequences and strong, positive political messages, watch Mulan on ABC Family

Wait! There are, like, a zillion other channels showing things besides the DNC and VMAs! I recommend checking out ABC Family, which will air Mulan twice (at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.). Nothing else in prime time will teach you how to be as mysterious as the dark side of the moon.

All kidding aside, are you conflicted about what to watch tonight? And if so, which extravaganza do you think you’ll pick?

Read more: