It takes a lot to impress Shania Twain. After all, her biggest hit (and arguably her best) was 1997's "That Don't Impress Me Much." She wrote an entire song about how she's just so bored of guys and their cars and their hair gel. And who could blame her? She's got way better things to do, like prance around the desert in a fabulously iconic leopard-print outfit with a matching hat box. Priorities, people!
Most of the song's lyrics make references to very specific kinds of dudes: the brainy rocket scientists who doesn't have the "touch," the guy obsessed with his car, and famously, Brad Pitt. In 1997, Brad Pitt was Hollywood's sexiest playboy. His pout was on every magazine cover, his perfectly highlighted hair was covered in gloss, and dated '90s babes Geena Davis and pre-Goop Gwyneth Paltrow. Pitt's nude photos also ended up in the August 1997 issue of Playgirl magazine, which he claimed were illegally snapped by the paparazzi. He later sued the publication for the late 90s equivalent of celebrity nude phone pic leaks.
Twain recalls the nude photo scandal in an interview with Billboard. "I remember I had a girl friend visiting me and it was near Christmas and we were baking cookies," she begins, with the most adorable lead-up to this story. "I was writing this album and there was a scandal of [Pitt] and Gwyneth where there was naked photos of him. And this was like all the rage. I just thought 'I don't know what all the fuss is about.' I'm like, well that don't impress me much, I mean what is all the fuss."
Shania is so right. What is all the fuss with being naked? Maybe if we stopped fetishising bodies as entitled objects, and viewed them as just a basic part of being human, celebs wouldn't have their nudes leaked and femme-presenting people could walk down the street without being harassed. "We see people naked every day. That's really what I thought," Twain continues. "I wasn't picking on Brad Pitt. But that was just the association in that moment and things we make fusses about and whatever. Of course, it could have been any gorgeous guy.”
But this particular gorgeous guy just happened to be Brad Pitt, and a culture-defining moment was born. "That Don't Impress Me Much" has stayed in our collective lexicon for 20 years, and it's no less relevant today than it was back then. Men, step it up if you want to impress us.
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