The Most Memorable TRL Moments of All Time
Ah, TRL: the beloved music countdown show that filled our after-school hours with all the pop hits and industry rivalries we could handle. Though it seemed the magic would never end, it eventually did, when the show concluded its 10-year run in 2008. Nearly a decade later, however, it's making a glorious comeback, and come October, five co-hosts, including DC Young Fly and Erik Zachary, will be taking over MTV's revamped Times Square headquarters to reintroduce the TRL phenomenon to a whole new generation. While there’s no word yet on whether Carson Daly will be making an appearance, or what kind of genius musical talent MTV will tap for the show's debut, we have no doubt it'll be epic — especially if these retro moments from the show’s golden age are any indicator. Click through to relive them all with us!
Mariah Carey Has a "Meltdown": No TRL moment was more iconic than what later came to be known as Mariah Carey’s “ice cream meltdown,” when the diva showed up unannounced to the set of the show back in 2011. Pushing an ice cream cart and removing her “Loverboy” tee to reveal a tank and an itty-bitty pair of hot pants, she left even host Carson Daly at a loss for words. “Every now and then, somebody needs a little therapy, and today is that moment for me,” Carey said at the time, with Daly joking, “Mariah Carey has lost her mind." It became a lot less funny when the singer was hospitalized shortly thereafter, but Carey insists it wasn't a breakdown — just a desperate cry for a break. “I was totally exhausted and I needed to go to sleep and I needed rest and I needed people to leave me alone and stop banging on my freaking door to get up and do a freaking video,” she later said in an interview. (Photo via Michael Loccisano/Getty)
Eminem Meets Mark Wahlberg: And the award for most awkward TRL interview ever goes to… Eminem and Mark Wahlberg! The rapper made his TRL debut in 1998 by royally ticking off Wahlberg when the Transformers: The Last Knight actor asked where he should stand, to which Em helpfully replied, “We’ll just all stand together like a happy fun bunch." Marky Mark (formerly of the Funky Bunch) was apparently none too pleased with the joke, as he could be seen replying under his breath, “A**hole.” (Photo via James Devaney/Getty)
Destiny’s Child Disbands: After seven years of making chart-topping hits together, Destiny’s Child disbanded in 2005. It was far from the last we’d hear from the ladies, but it WAS their last TRL appearance as a group, giving megafans the opportunity to say their face-to-face, tear-filled goodbyes. (Photo via Scott Gries)
Battle of the Boy-Band Fans: A little friendly competition between fans of The Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC went horribly awry when BSB fan Tiffany lost a game and took things to a whole new level. “Tiffany’s about to punch me,” Daly quipped, adding, “You look very p*ssed off.” She was. “I’m gonna kill her,” she said of her opponent before turning on Daly. “I’m gonna kill you too.” Though he assured her it was only a game, her smoldering look said it all, making both Daly and Tiffany's competitor visibly nervous. “I don’t want her in my back,” he said before jumping out of the screen. (Photo via MTV)
Diddy Running on a Treadmill: When P. Diddy (as he was then known) ran on a treadmill for the duration of an entire episode of the hit show back in 2003, his fellow guest star, Britney Spears, was there to lend a helping hand in the form of a towel dab. (Photo via Scott Gries/Getty)
The Backstreet Boys Croon ”I Want It That Way” in 1999: Need we say more? (Photo via Peter Kramer)
JAY-Z and Beyoncé Go Public: Though it seems like they’ve been married forever (almost 10 years now!), JAY-Z and Beyoncé were once just two kids in love, trying to keep their relationship from the prying eyes of the media. They blew their own covers, however, by dropping by TRL in 2002 (in a convertible with police escorts, no less) to perform their hit duet “’03 Bonnie & Clyde.” (Photo via Kevin Mazur/Getty)
Christina Aguilera Does “Genie”: Of all of the crooner’s many, many TRL appearances, our favorite remains her 1999 live performance of her debut single, “Genie in a Bottle.” Those red pants, tho! (Photo via Scott Gries/Getty)
Taylor Swift Fangirling Over Meeting Rihanna and Mini Me: These days, it probably takes quite a bit to make megastar Taylor Swift freak out, but back in 2008, the on-the-rise country crooner was so geeked to appear on the show, she made an entire vlog of her experience, including the moment she dubbed her favorite: meeting RiRi and Mini-Me. (Photo via Scott Gries)
Lindsay Lohan Sings: Lohan, best known for her acting roles in such classics as The Parent Trap and Mean Girls, showed off her vocal skills as she belted out Cheap Trick’s “I Want You to Want Me” back in 2005. (Photo via Peter Kramer/Getty)
Liam Gallagher Being Too Cool for School: Talk about cringe-worthy! The notoriously surly Gallagher showed up for a predictably difficult interview with Daly in 2000, during which he stood an uncomfortable distance away from the host, gave repeated, one-word answers (“Godlike”), and mused of Times Square, “I don’t think you’ve got anything happening for you.” (Photo via Jeff Spicer/Getty)
Nick Lachey, Jessica Simpson, and Vanessa Lachey's Foretelling Joint Appearances: Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson appeared on the show several times as a married couple, with Vanessa Minnillo as their host, a fact that has to be odd to the former MTV VJ now that she's been married to Lachey for six years. (Photo via Frank Micelotta/Getty)
Britney Spears Co-hosting With Melissa Joan Hart: In a moment of pure ‘90s perfection, pop princess Britney Spears came together with our favorite teen witch in 1999 to introduce the day’s top 10 vids — one of which just so HAPPENED to be from Spears’s rival, Christina Aguilera. (Photo via Ron Galella/Getty)
Rihanna Begging Fans for a Number-One Spot Against Kelly Clarkson: Like Swift, Rihanna had a more humbling moment on the show prior to launching into her own celebrity stratosphere. Back in 2007, she begged fans to vote her in for the top spot against fellow guest Kelly Clarkson. “Come on, I’m your host, you gotta vote me number one!” she implored viewers. Despite her best efforts, however, and Clarkson’s assurances that she’d “be cool” with number two, RiRi had to settle for second best, losing out to “Never Again.” (Photo via Scott Gries)
Amy Winehouse Singing "Rehab": While every performance from the late Amy Winehouse, who was taken from us far too soon, feels like a gift, her 2007 TRL Milano performance of “Rehab” was truly magical. (Photo via Gareth Cattermole/Getty)
Reigning in Avril Lavigne: Host Damien Fahey had a hell of a time interviewing Avril Lavigne in 2004, when the pop-punk princess showed up to promote her second album, Under My Skin. In the funny but unfocused interview, the Evan Rachel Wood lookalike discussed everything from yoga (“You sold so many copies of… ‘Yoga!’) to hungover fans in the crowd (“He’s wearing the same clothes that he wore yesterday!”). Thirteen years later, she has us all kinds of amped up to hear the new tunes she’s promising for 2017. (Photo via Scott Gries/Getty)
Prince Calling Out Carson Daly: While this wasn’t *quite* as awkward as Eminem’s moment with Mark Wahlberg, the late musical legend did put host Daly on the spot in 1999, after the host remarked on the artist's staying power in what he called “an age of disposable music.” “What’s disposable music?” Prince clarified, to which Daly replied, “Well, music that seems to come and go… music that lasts for maybe just a couple of weeks sometimes." Prince shot back: "You don’t promote any of that disposable music, do you?” (Photo via Carlo Allegri/Getty)
What was your favorite TRL moment? Let us know over @BritandCo.
What was your favorite TRL moment? Let us know over @BritandCo.
(Photo via Frazer Harrison/Getty)
Nicole is the weekend editor for Brit + Co who loves bringing you all the latest buzz. When she's not busy typing away into the wee hours, you can usually find her canoodling with her fur babies, rooting around in a bookstore, or rocking out at a concert of some sort (Guns N' Roses forever!). Check out all her latest musings and past work at nicolebjean.com.