R&B legends Brandy and Monica blessed our lockdown slump with a Verzuz battle riddled with throwbacks and left everyone fighting over whether Monica was wearing very tall boots or very long pants.
On Monday night, the two met in Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta to go head to head, showing off their biggest hits and throwing in some cutting banter in-between. It was unclear whether they were playing up the frenemy angle for the sake of drama, or whether Brandy really was that good of a troll and Monica was really that good at trying not to beat up Miss Norwood right then and there. But between the drama, the music, and the memes, Brandy and Monica truly broke the internet. The Verzuz drew in over 1.2 million viewers and generated hundreds of thousands of tweets. Celebrities popped up in the comments section to talk about their favorite songs and to talk to each other; Solange and Tyler the Creator got into a debate about the one question every viewer was wondering: Was Monica wearing pants or long boots?
I mean, it was admittedly hard to tell:
In the end, they appear to be pants, but Muse editor Clover Hope and I both agree that boots would have been so much cooler.
And, of course, it’s an election year, so there was a political element to the night as well: All proceeds from the battle went to Michelle Obama’s When We All Vote initiative, and vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris dropped by for a cameo (reminding everyone to register to vote).
Both Brandy and Monica began their singing careers as teens in the ’90s—Brandy in 1994 released her debut “I Wanna Be Down,” and Monica dropped her debut single “Don’t Take It Personal (Just One of Dem Days)” in 1995. The two then-budding industry rivals released the iconic duet “The Boy Is Mine” in 1998, which earned them a Grammy the following year.
The two ended the Verzuz with “The Boy Is Mine” as Monica pretended she didn’t know the words, the ultimate flex.
There may never be agreement on who “the boy” actually belonged to, and we may never know if these two actually can’t stand each other or not, but whether you’re Team Brandy or a ride or die for Monica, it’s safe to say that it’ll be hard for Verzuz to top this one.