Annotated Lyrics: The Real Meaning Behind "The Boy Is Mine"

Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images.
When you were a teenager, you didn't really think about the meanings of the words to your favorite songs. You just sang along — and possibly choreographed dances to them with your friends. And, since nostalgia and millennials are something of a package deal, it's likely that now you look back fondly on the songs of your adolescence as untouchable, perfect, not up for criticism. But have you ever stopped to think about what these songs are actually about? In our Annotated Lyrics series, we'll revisit No. 1 songs on their chart-topping anniversary to explore what the lyrics are really telling us.
Advertisement
On July 18, 1998, Brandy and Monica had a chart-topping duet. "The Boy Is Mine" played a central role in the formative years of '90s kids, and now it plays an equally important role on any #TBT playlist.
But, in retrospect, this song doesn't make a lot of sense.
Though the song — and the incredibly dated music video — holds a special place in our hearts, a closer look at the lyrics brings up a lot of valid questions. For starters, how did this conversation even take place? This was a time before social media and the ubiquity of cell phones with data plans. Did they just run into each other at the mall? Also, why are these women feuding with each other? It's pretty clear that the real enemy is this dude who's trying to date both of them.
Advertisement

More from Music

Ally Brooke Hernandez, one fifth of Fifth Harmony, was attacked onstage during a concert Thursday in Mexico. According to E! News, a man ran onto the ...
It's official: Lady Gaga will be the 2017 Super Bowl halftime show headliner. The "Perfect Illusion" singer has confirmed in a tweet that, "This year the ...
Is anything better than plugging in your headphones, firing up your music app of choice, and jamming out to that brand-new song you're obsessed with? Don...
Alice Tan Ridley's powerful voice is finally getting some time in the spotlight. After years of singing in New York City subway stations to support her ...
Everyone has that song that makes their blood rush, their face flush, and their pulse quicken. It's the jam you always have queued up when there's even the...
Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but try telling that to Britney Spears. The pop star didn't seem all that impressed when a London radio ...
There's a rumor going around on Twitter that Hilary Duff and Justin Bieber are making music together. It appears to have started with the Hilary Duff News...
Lady Gaga just confirmed what we knew to be true: She will be the headliner at the Super Bowl halftime show. Gaga announced her official involvement with ...
In a cover interview with Elle, Miley Cyrus threw some major shade at Mariah Carey. "I’ve never really been a fan, because it’s so much about Mariah ...
Selena Gomez just dropped a new song that has her asking if you can keep a secret. It seems like she's the one who's keeping secrets, though. Gomez ...
The Ronettes had it all wrong. The best part of breaking up is not the making up. That rarely happens, and when it does, it often leads to more breaking up...
The Canadian singer's new video suggests that there's a whole new Weeknd in store
Solange took a page out Beyoncé's book with last week's cryptic social media posts. Now, she's made good on what we maybe-kind-of thought she was promising...
Mariah Carey is basically the definition of a diva. Miley Cyrus, on the other hand, refuses to even walk the red carpet because "people are starving." So...