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'Dream speech' anniversary, Miley's VMA performance: The week's best photos

Aug. 30, 2013 at 9:25 AM ET

From President Obama's tribute to Martin Luther King to a controversial performance at MTV's Video Music Awards, the past week has brought images that evoke a wide range of reactions. TODAY's Picture Perfect series takes a look at the stories behind some of the week's most powerful photos.

1. Obama at the anniversary of the march on Washington

March on Washington Anniversary
Saul Loeb / AFP/Getty Images

On Wednesday, Obama paid tribute to Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. on the 50th anniversary of the "I Have a Dream" speech. Obama exclaimed that King's words "belong to the ages" and cited laws, social change and even his own election as examples of how far the country has come since that day in 1963.

2. Rim fire

Big Bear firefighter Jon Curtis keeps a close eye on a 'slop over' fire that jumped Hwy 120 just east of Hardin Flat Road while fighting the Rim Fire,...
Modesto Bee / MCT via Getty Images

For nearly two weeks, wildfires have raged on in central California. This photo helped capture the enormity of what is currently the sixth largest wildfire in the state's history.

3. Miley Cyrus at the VMAs

Miley Cyrus performs onstage during the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards at the Barclays Center on August 25, 2013.
Jeff Kravitz / Getty

Miley Cyrus caused a stir with her controversial VMA performance on Sunday, leading to a nationwide debate over whether her performance was too provocative. While many declared their outrage, others came rushing to Cyrus' defense, including Justin Timberlake, who said: "It's the VMAs, what did you guys expect?"

4. A marine and his wife

ShutterHappy
Sarah Ledford / ShutterHappy

This image of former Marine Jesse Cottle and his wife went viral this week, as the picture taken at a family photo shoot struck the hearts of the nation. Cottle lost his legs while fighting in Afghanistan in 2009. The photographer Sarah Ledford suggested the couple take a photo with Jesse Cottle on Kelly's back, and the photo went viral almost immediately after it was posted to Facebook. For more from the photographer, check her out on Facebook here.

Dancing nuns, 5K heroes: The week's best photos from 8/2

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