Dahhlings, Mariah Carey doesn't do birthdays. She has anniversaries. And when her beau, Bryan Tanaka, popped out of a cake dressed as a Chippendale on Sunday's episode of Mariah's World
, you'd have to be living under the world's biggest rock to not know that Mimi's anniversary was much better than her New Year's Eve
From the looks of it, she also had a pretty great Easter and Christmas, as we learned from this collage-y episode, which went from her lip-syncing her own Christmas song, "Oh Santa!," on her private jet with her crew to Easter and candy eggs in just minutes.
But that "anniversary" party -- we need to talk about the champagne Mimi pours down the chiseled chest of "Magic Tanaka."
"Why are we making such a big deal out of it, like nobody ever got champagne poured on themselves before?" Carey cooed during a confessional after she got backup dancer-turned-beau Bryan Tanaka all wet, then wagged her finger at the camera. "Don't you be naughty naughty and use this section."
Luckily for all you thirsty people, we got to witness the half-naked Tanaka cake moment, which Mariah did not mind in the slightest.
"I thank you very much," she told Tanaka. "That was a lovely event."
As the two sequestered themselves in a corner at the private party -- where Mariah joked that she's "14; can you believe it?" -- heads turned, prompting a cautionary confessional from Anthony Burrell, Mariah's artistic director. "I see everyone witnessing Tanaka over there all over Mariah," he says. "I'm like, dude, you're walking on dangerous grounds. Here the woman is engaged about to get married
. This is your job, for goodness' sake."
But Tanaka played innocent, claiming that he just wants to "get back to to that camaraderie… that friendship."
When Tanaka's fellow dancers interrogate him about his special night with the anniversary girl, where the two got reacquainted after a six-year lapse in their relationship, he said he hopes "we get to do more moments like that." (Looks like Tanaka's in luck. A preview of upcoming episodes teased a romantic wine date and a beachside kissing sesh.)
It's revealed that Tanaka's affection for Mariah runs deep because, he says, when he would visit her New York home, the singer would play some unreleased music for him and "it felt like she was almost opening up to me."
In fact, this is a common experience for most of Mariah's fans, the "lambs," who were heavily featured taking selfies with the queen, as well as backstage at her concerts.
One superfan showed Mariah her tattoo of the lyrics to "One Sweet Day" inked on her back, while another told the singer that he can't sleep without hearing her comeback ballad "Through the Rain" before bed. ("He's making me cry," she said to her team. "That's not normal to hear.") Yours truly can also say that Mimi's music and biracial backstory helped
with personal adolescent self-actualization.
Another tender and very real moment featured Precious director and Mimi's bestie Lee Daniels getting personal with Mariah about racial adversity early in her career.
"People believed that you were white," Daniels told Carey during their heart-to-heart, to which Mariah responded, "Unless I had black written on my forehead, how were they supposed to know?"
She added, "They think I was a privileged kid. They have no idea."
Those who didn't do now, thanks to this surprisingly introspective entry in the eight-part Mariah's World
event. We also now know that it's not easy working for a premier diva like Mariah, as demonstrated by her frazzled tour assistant, Molly. Not only can the diva not sleep without Apple TV
, there's also no time for personal affairs when you're on Mariah's payroll.
"There's literally zero downtime," Molly laments, noting that working for Mariah is on "a whole other level" than pulling college all-nighters and working retail. "It's cool if I get like one minute to sleep or eat or take a shower."
Molly may have a lot more free time soon if Stella, Mariah's brazen manager, kicks her to the curb, which was the cliffhanger leading into next week's episode. When Stella consulted Mariah, the singer said Molly was too "delicate" for the job, which she expressed, by the way, as she lounged on a bathroom counter in lingerie while drinking wine. Mariah was also pushed around backstage on a rolling chair because "this is gonna make my life easier," which is logic you can't argue with.
And how about that short-but-sweet "be nice or leave" sign she held up at the beginning of the episode? Considering the uproar over Mimi's NYE Times Square performance on Saturday, its inclusion was astoundingly relevant.
Mariah's World airs at Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT Sundays on E!