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April 02, 2014

Money can’t buy you happiness, but it CAN buy you a really, really, really big house.

When MTV Cribs first premiered in September 2000, America was, for all intents and purposes, a different country. We hadn’t yet gone through the tragedy of 9/11, NSYNC had yet to go on an “indefinite hiatus,” and, perhaps most importantly, no one had even considered the thought of a taco shell made out of Doritos.

But in an instant, everything changed, and by 2005, Cribs had gone inside the home of nearly 200 “celebrities,” showing us the insane benefits that can come if you’re just willing to work hard, invest in Vitamin Water, or, best-case scenario, have a very rich dad.

The show still exists in various forms today, like CMT Cribs wherein they tour the homes of bull riders, and Teen Cribs wherein they go inside the bedrooms of kids who might possibly still sleep in cribs, BUT THIS ISN’T ABOUT THAT! No, this is about the classics, those early-2000s episodes that helped us get through the Bush years, hoping upon hope that one day we could own an infinity pool, whatever the hell that is. (Kidding, we all know what that is, thanks to people like Lil Romeo!)

Here are 10 of the most memorable Cribs on Earth. Some will be remembered for their sheer square footage, while some will be remembered for the ridiculousness of their owners, but all of them, yes, all of them, are where the magic happens.


As one of the most successful recording artists of all-time, Mariah Carey is what multi-millionaires often refer to as “way richer than Nick Cannon.” And that kind of cheese will buy you a house people really want to look inside of, I guess, because her hour-long episode is listed as the most watched and rewatched episode in the history of MTV Cribs.

You know you know it. NYC. Fighting dogs. Three floors. 5000 shoes. Pink everywhere.  MTV even took it upon themselves at one point to do a special re-airing of this episode with “star-studded celebrity commentary,” wherein talking heads interjected with comments about how sick this Tribecca triplex is. Those “stars” included, among others, Jermaine Dupri, Da Brat ,and Hulk Hogan. Oh ’00s, I love you so much.

And in case you think I forgot about the bathtub scene, I didn’t. No one ever will. (Skip to the end)

Mariah Carey has since gone crazy one or a dozen times, but one thing she’s never done? Run out of money. So there’s you’re lesson kids, be naturally talented and work hard for the better part of two decades and you too can never achieve this kind of success.

Despite being a successful rapper for only like three-and-a-half months, 50 Cent is incredibly successful. His G-Unit clothing line, investment in Vitamin Water and the $14 he probably made for starring in that cancer movie that never came out gave him the kind of life you only deserve if you got shot more than eight times. Fortunately for 50, he was shot nine.

In this ep, 50 takes us on a tour of his Connecticut home, which used to be owned by Mike Tyson. The home has six kitchens, which really speaks to how large it is, because imagine how big a house with five kitchens is, and well, this one has six. In this clip, 50 shows us his shoe room and is basically like, “Guys, I only have two feet, I probably ain’t gonna ever wear most of these.”

Have fun being poor everybody!

I should probably tell you that as of 2012, 50 Cent was desperately trying to sell the home. Not because he’s broke, but because he’s “sick of the two-hour commute” into the city. This makes me laugh because it makes me imagine 50 Cent listening to a morning zoo crew on his drive into the office. HA.

Joey McIntyre was in New Kids on the Block. He bought his 200-year-old house when he was 17. It was once part of the underground railroad. None of that is important. What is important? Joey McIntyre was the first person on Cribs to ever say, “This is where the magic happens.”

Thank you, Joey McIntyre.

This one is great for SO MANY REASONS. Here are some of those reasons.

  • Remember Ja Rule?
  • Remember Irv Gotti? Oh man. HA.
  • Vin Diesel is just hanging out, partying at Ja Rule’s house. HAHAHA!
  • This isn’t Ja Rule’s house. He just rented it for a weekend.
  • The homeowner sued MTV for filming inside their home without their knowledge.
  • Remember Ashanti?

You remember Ashanti, right 50?


Honestly, this one feels like cheating, because while sure, it’s a house, it’s sort of a company building/cultural statue, you know? Nevertheless, Hef always does it big. And he teaches us all that if you make enough money, no one can ever make you take off your pajamas.

Hey 50, tell us about the first time you went to the Playboy mansion.

Man 50, you weird.

Perhaps more than any of these episodes, this one serves as a time capsule of the early 2000s, albeit one that begs more questions than it answers. For instance, “Why did we ever pay attention to the Hogan family?", “Did Brooke Hogan actually think she was going to be a legendary musician?”, and “Who told the Hulkster he was allowed to dance?”

In this clip, Brooke Hogan wants us to believe that her mom spent five years studying French architecture, which honestly may be the funniest single thing I’ve ever heard in my life i’m not even kidding you can tell i’m serious because i’ve stopped using punctuation



Seriously, think about this for a second. In the late ’90s/early 2000s, we cared so much about Nick Carter they made us give a shit about Aaron Carter. Ugh. Gross.

But as I was saying: LOOK AT HIS SHIRT!

Hey, Shaq, what are your thoughts on Aaron Carter?


From a sheer, “OMG I want to live there” standpoint, Penny Hardaway’s house stands above all others. There’s a bowling alley, a putting green and a bedroom big enough to fit the entirety of the house he grew up in. Similarly, from an “OMG I want to watch that” standpoint, Blue Chips is my forever number-one movie. My point is, Penny Hardaway is like the coolest dude and if you didn’t know it then, you know it now.


Remember when Vin Diesel was hanging out at Ja Rule’s not-house and we all laughed and laughed. Well, Richard Branson’s private island home is the kind of place where Mariah Carey just hangs out. Yeah, he’s big time.

And let’s be real, no one reading this article will EVER EVER EVER achieve this kind of success. That’s something we all need to come to terms with. HOWEVER, for a mere $53K a night, you too can spend the night there as good ol’ Dicky B is kind enough to rent the place out to suckers, I mean ... yeah no, I meant suckers.

Hey 50, what does your friend Eminem think of Branson's island estate?


And finally, Redman. Oh, Redman. Did you know it’s actually illegal to do an article about MTV Cribs and not include Redman’s episode? Thanks, Obama!

Honestly, though, this one is special. Redman’s Staten Island home is perhaps the most inspirational Cribs episode of all. Not for us viewers, though, but for Redman himself. His tiny TV, shoe box full of money, and dude on the couch give the rapper the feeling that, hey, there’s always room to move up. But is there?

Earlier this year, MTV revisited the home and while things look a bit nicer, it’s good to see Redman still has room to grow.

Get More: Redman, Retromania, Full Episodes

What do you think of that 50?

WHAT THE HECK, 50? Stop being weird!

OK, that’s all for this go round. Join us next time when we interview former R&B star Mya and ask her if she remembers Ashanti. Can’t wait to find out.


Previously on Unnecessary Tributes: 13 Things That Make The Rosie O’Donnell Show the Ultimate 90s Time Capsule