If you were a teenage boy in the mid to late 1990s who had yet to discover taste in men, who was glued to MTV’s TRL like any other kid, your pop star heart throb was probably–at least for my circle of friends–one of two young women: Britney Spears or Christina Aguilera. Me? Well, let’s just say I watched Tank Girl and thought, “Oh my god… she’s the one…”
“Dude, Tank Girl would kick your ass,” I was warned.
“I know…….. *drool*” was my response, but I digress.
I wanted what everyone else considered the stereotypical “bad apples,” and not the popular “bad girls,” but the women that I knew could chew me up and spit me out, and if you were me watching MTV there could only be one woman for you, and her name is Fiona Apple.
Criminal landed in 1996, and the music video hooked me hard. See what I did there? It was the perfect sexual motif for a vulnerable boy. Her voice is a bronzed contralto, low, moaning, pleading even, but still capable of high registers with hints of orgasm. The character she invoked in the music video invoked a deep need to please, knowing full well such pleasure came at a cost. She was angular, raw, and nude, and my fifteen year old self couldn’t get enough of her. It was classic 90s Heroin Chic with an extra edge to it, and all I could do was watch and stare like a moth caught in bright light.