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Like summer's end, the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards are fast approaching. If the show's 29-year legacy is any indication, we're in for superstar collabs and elaborate sets come Sunday (Aug. 26). To celebrate the annual MTV spectacular, Billboard.com staff picked the best performances in VMA history. Pop megastars including Michael Jackson, Madonna, Britney Spears and Lady Gaga made a strong showing on the tally. Read on to find out where they ranked, and relive all the showstopping performances. And while you're at it, we want to know what YOU think. Vote in our poll at the end of the list to let us know what you think are the 10 Best VMAs performances ever.
10. Rihanna, 2008
"Disturbia"/"Seven Nation Army"
Subtly sampling the beat from the White Stripes' "Seven Nation Army" with her own haunting pop, Rihanna kicked off the 2008 VMAs with "Disturbia." Naturally, an onslaught of "Thriller"-esque dance-zombies and Ri-Ri performing from within a metal float rounded out the eerie gig.
9. Eminem, 2000
"The Real Slim Shady"/"The Way I Am"
Performing amidst a sea of Eminem lookalikes, Marshall Mathers made his point loud and clear at the 2000 VMAs: He is and will always be the Real Slim Shady. In an image etched into our minds, Em led his the imitators through Radio City, later busting right into "The Way I Am."
8. Taylor Swift, 2009
"You Belong With Me"
Country gal Taylor Swift got a taste of the big city life at the 2009 VMAs, performing "You Belong With Me" on the uptown F train before emerging from the subway and climbing on top of a taxi. Swift was riding high from the innovative performance, until Kanye West proceeded to bring her down a peg later that night with his "I'm gonna let you finish..." rant.