This year's MTV VMAs have been weirdly...romantic. Pete Davidson and Ariana Grande stared longingly at each other on the red carpet; King Princess and Amandla Stenberg proved the kids are more than all right; Gucci Mane and Keyshia Ka'Oir exuded marital bliss. But it was Alex Rodriguez's adoring glances during his girlfriend Jennifer Lopez's epic VMAs performance that made me believe in love the same way Peter Kavinsky and Lara Jean Song Covey's relationship in To All The Boys I Loved Before did.
We could fill up a scrapbook of iconic moments from Lopez's medley performance. But for now, we'll focus on the man who drank in each of those moments with an expression of awestruck support and admiration. In the middle of her performance, the camera cut to A. Rod recording the show on his iPhone. Never mind the fact that Lopez's entire number would be captured during the live telecast with high-definition cameras — Rodriguez wanted a copy of his own to watch, and rewatch, while he was sitting around playing with his phone like the rest of us. In that moment, his face was a billboard for how extremely, unbelievably lucky he feels to be dating J. Lo.
In fact, Rodriguez had been taking photos of Lopez all evening.
Essentially, Rodriguez was the picture of a supportive partner. He shared in Lopez's accomplishments fully. He stans for J. Lo, and that's how it should be when you're over the moon.
And thus, the 2018 MTV VMAs redefined #couplegoals for the rest of us.
The affection is clearly mutual. Lopez practically embedded a miniature marriage vows section into her Video Vanguard acceptance speech. "Alex, you're like my twin soul. We're mirror images of each other. My life is sweeter and better with you in it because you make me realize that every day, the sky is not the limit. The universe is infinite, and so is what we can accomplish together," she said. The camera cut away to an A. Rod obviously overcome with emotion. His green eyes were brimming with a substance that looked suspiciously like tears. He even mouthed "I love you."
Lopez's "twin soul" comment is a peek into Lopez and Rodriguez's inside couple language. Lopez and Rodriguez are fans of twin imagery — in 2017, Rodriguez told Vanity Fair, "We are very much twins. We’re both Leos; we’re both from New York; we’re both Latino and about 20 other things.” Clearly, we don't have to look hard to learn what J. Lo and A. Rod think of each other. The couple is forthcoming with their mutual adoration. "I understand him in a way that I don’t think anyone else could, and he understands me in a way that no one else could ever,” Lopez said in the same Vanity Fair story.
Lately, Hollywood has been overrun by a crop of newly formed, quickly engaged couples. The whirlwind is earnest and adorable — don't get me wrong! But there's something equally epic in Lopez and Rodriguez, two pop culture stalwarts and history-makers who seem to have formed a genuine, solid happiness with each other. They're living legends. But with each other, they get to be humans, too.