(“Video” is the song cut to the “Don’t Forget About Us” clip.)
Wanna know why Mariah can pull off this kind of come-on and Janet can’t?
1. Mariah keeps things light’n’girly, as Rich has pointed out so well. They carnival-ride keyboards, her insistence on cooing her way through half of the damn song – she’s like Hello Kitty as an American singer!
2. Mariah doesn’t sing about S&M. Not saying there’s anything wrong with that, but it’s not exactly the formula for monster pop success.
3. Mariah’s hotter, period. Janet’s starting to look ever-so-slightly like her brother (check out the nose job), and let’s face it: the Jacksons aren’t known for aging well. Whereas Mariah, well, is facing down her 40s (I believe she’s about 37) with aplomb.
4. And don’t forget about this: Mariah just gets better songs than Janet does. Compare the singles from Damita Jo (which is actually worse than you think) to those from The Emancipation of Mimi (which may actually be better than you think, especially once “Don’t Forget About Us” got tacked on). There’s really no comparison.
“Touch My Body” isn’t great Mariah, but it’s definitely good Mariah, and I like it a lot. Like a virus in your hard drive, it insinuates itself in your brain (Mariah does love her hooks, and for good reason) and doesn’t leave. Which is fine with me. Welcome back, Mimi, it’s good to see you again.