Once upon a time, in the days before we lived our lives through our phones, tweenage kids came directly home from school to watch Total Request Live on MTV. And 15 years ago, on this very day, in the middle of an episode, Mariah Carey showed up unannounced with an ice cream cart.
Viewers heard a singing voice interrupt Daly,"Loverboy, come on and love me." Daly, confused, says, "What the hell is that?" And Carey strolls in with a "Loverboy" T-shirt and a bin of frozen treats. It appears to be entirely unplanned. Daly repeatedly claims that he had no idea this was happening.
Though, once Carey strips off her T-shirt to reveal tiny shorts and a halter top, Daly is able to channel his roll-with-the-punches hosting skills and asks a loud if maybe we should turn the air conditioning down, because nipples, you guys.
Though what's unmistakable about this clip is that, even if Carey's appearance was planned — as she is later revealed to be the headliner for MTV's upcoming Live And Almost Legal anniversary party — Carey isn't quite herself. Perhaps acknowledging this, Carey tells the host, "You're my therapy session right now."
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In between insisting he needs to cut to commercial and casually dropping the idea that "Mariah Carey's lost her mind," Daly kind of just lets Carey do her thing. What else could he do? She explains that she brought ice cream because, "If you don't have ice cream in your life, sometimes you might go a little bit crazy." She proceeded to read Daly a love letter her mother had written to him.
Shortly after her appearance on TRL, Carey was hospitalized for exhaustion, though the singer denies the implications from media at the time that she was having an emotional breakdown. When we were kids watching Carey hand out ice cream, it didn't occur to us that a larger issue was looming. This is the luxury of childhood.
Of course, a lot has changed in 15 years. Now, Daly's hosting the Today show, and seems to have abandoned his bro behavior. Carey has relaunched her career, and enjoys claiming to not know who J.Lo is. And the rest of us? Well, we're just grown-ups.