Ranking Whitney Houston’s Music Videos from Worst to Best
Yep, I’m doing this again. Deal with it because I Will Always Love Her. I have already written several posts about her, including how she influenced me (see here), all of her songs ranked in order (see here), and a review of her latest documentary (see here). So, I figure the only thing left now is to rank all of her music videos! Then I promise I’ll be done and will move onto a different artist (maybe).
Every Whitney Houston Music Video Ranked from Worst to Best
If you’ve read my post about all of her songs ranked in order, you might notice that the ranking is similar here. However, I’m going to focus more on the video here and not much on the song, since I already ranked the songs. Here is my ranking criteria, in case you’re curious:
- Video concept/storyline
- Quality of video (although I don’t count it against them due to the year it was made, I know technology improves over time)
- How it ties into her body of work
- My own personal opinion which depends on my mood tbh
So as you can see, this is not a scientific study. People are not afraid to tell me my rankings are wrong for her songs, so feel free to disagree with me! I love seeing everyone’s opinions!
Before we get started, let me know your favorite Whitney video!My favorite Whitney Houston video: Click To Tweet
And/or your least favorite:My least favorite Whitney Houston video: Click To Tweet
52). King Holiday
I understand that this is a tribute to Martin Luther King Jr, so I probably shouldn’t rank it this low. But let’s examine this video. It goes into the cringiest song-and-dance I’ve ever seen, and it’s filmed on a stage like a middle school talent show. It’s worse than a middle school talent show, because at least the excuse for them is that they’re in middle school. Whitney’s part is the only good part of the video or the song, but it’s not enough to save it unfortunately. Dr. King deserved better.
51). Stop the Madness
This is an anti-drug campaign by Ronald Reagan in 1985, so I have no idea who most of these celebrities are. We have a lot of shots of money, cocaine and white guys in wife beaters going to jail. It looks a lot like a Kid Rock documentary. Arnold Swarzenegger makes a confusing appearance as a guy who hands a package to a trash man and then gives a terrifying smile and thumbs up. The whole video makes me feel like I’m on drugs, and I’m willing to bet a lot of the people involved in the video (Whitney included) were on drugs during the filming.
50). Light of Love
The only way you’d really know Whitney is in this is because in the beginning they have FEATURING WHITNEY HOUSTON on the video. She doesn’t make an appearance until 2:27, when she gets a few seconds of a solo and the words WHITNEY HOUSTON appear underneath her, which, lol. It’s a cute video, there’s a lot of dancing and playing basketball, but as far as “Whitney Houston music videos” go it’s definitely not one of her best.
49). One Wish Promo
I really shouldn’t rank this one at all, but I do need to mention it because it’s the only video from her holiday album. She lip syncs a couple snippets from different songs while a voice actor tells us how great she is, as if we didn’t know. You can tell the label was really trying to milk this release because they went all out for the video. She’s wearing a gorgeous dress in a room full of candles. There are several harrowing moments where it looks like she might catch on fire, but thankfully does not. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t just film a whole video if they were already there and making this promo? Would it really have cost that much more to just have her run through “Oh Holy Night” a couple times? It would have been a beautiful video; I wish they had done it.
48). One Moment In Time
First, I love the song, so don’t get mad about the low ranking! Remember we are focusing only on videos here. Second, I’m not trashing Olympic athletes, but come on. This is literally the lowest-effort music video ever. Whitney isn’t in it at all. It’s just random clips of Olympians doing things, and I have no idea who any of them are because I wasn’t even alive then.
47). Celebrate New Life
This video looks like it was edited by someone who just learned how to use the Ken Burns effect in iMovie. The fast panning and zooming in and out makes me nauseous before the singing even starts. Then we go back and forth between a “live” performance and random people in the street, doing seemingly nothing. Bebe and Cece Winans sternly hand out flyers to kids sitting on cars. The flyers don’t say anything, but I like to imagine they say “JESUS SAYS GET OFF OF MY LEXUS.” Whitney gets about 2 seconds of camera time starting at 2:33, but there’s also this cute video of her in the studio with them:
46). Feelin’ Inside
I don’t even know why I’m including this, but she does appear for a few seconds here and there. Really, if you’re a huge Whitney fan like me, this video is aggravating. They only show bits and pieces of her for one second at a time. She’s never fully on camera, because she must not take any focus away from Bobby at any point. But then it’s like, why even have her in the video at all? The rest of the video is visually interesting I guess. We’ve got skeletons dancing and the room changes color along with the dancer’s outfits. Don’t watch past 2:33 if you’re epileptic though because you’ll definitely have a seizure. I’m not epileptic and I almost had one. Ever been in a haunted house and they have nothing scary at the end so they just turn one of those lights on? Same thing here. Finally, at 4:01 we get Whitney’s full face and a final spoken line from her, which makes all the waiting worth it.
45). Love Will Save The Day
I’m not even really sure this is a “real” music video, but based on the information that says that there was one, and this video claiming to be “official,” I have to assume that it is. It’s shady, though. This channel is not Whitney’s official channel, and it might be removed, in which case you won’t even be able to see the video. Honestly, you’re not missing much. It’s a live performance of the song at some sporting event. They really did Whitney wrong on this performance. They couldn’t even give her a fog machine or a couple of dancers? She’s left to flail around by herself like a cruise ship singer borrowing her roommates clothes. Whitney deserved way better. We all did, honestly.
Check out the enthusiastic audience, though. I’ll give you a little tip from my earlier career as a model: people are frequently paid to be part of a crowd to pretend to love the artist. It gets other people into it and looks better for video. Since no one there looks like they know any of the words, I’d be willing to bet they were compensated in some way.
44). All At Once
This is one of my favorite songs, and I’ve covered it myself, but the video is spectacularly boring. Usually, even if the video is boring, it’s still okay because you can still look at how beautiful she is and enjoy that. However, this one is so bright, with her wearing a white outfit, in white flood lights and surrounded by white pillars, you can barely see her. It has a weird set design that I guess is supposed to look like a stage, and I guess she’s pretending to sing live, but she doesn’t seem too into it. In the beginning she clearly starts lip syncing the next line ahead of time. Still love the song, but the video is a no from me, dog.
The intro is totally what I would say and do if I ever encountered Whitney Houston. However, there’s a cringey and heart-stopping moment when the fan says he would “drink her bathwater.” Given the circumstances of her death, it’s an unfortunate coincidence, but it made me shudder to my core. The rest of the video is fine. Whitney gyrates around and shakes her shoulders. The best part really is the group of cute kids posing as paparazzi. There’s no story or anything, but her eyeshadow looks amazing so there’s that.
The one positive of this video is that it’s shot really well. It was a later release so the camera quality is way better than some of her others. That’s about all I can really say about it though, because throughout the video it’s clear that Whitney is high out of her mind. I mean, she probably was for a number of these videos, but her frantic eye movements and arm flailing motions are unnerving. After seeing the Whitney documentary for the billionth time (it’s on Hulu now, go watch it! Also check out my review here), it blows my mind how many people were well aware of her addiction and did nothing. I understand that it’s a touchy subject and tough to approach. But I’ve seen “Intervention” enough times to know that it can be done. I’ve also seen high people in my life, so I can say with confidence that she’s super, super high in this video.
41). I Look To You
Ugh, I’m so conflicted with both the song and the video. The song is really good and I love it, but it was written by R. Kelly and I don’t like that my $0.0009 streaming fee goes directly to a sexual abuser (allegedly, I guess. Not trying to get sued here, but come on). The video is beautiful and Whitney looks amazing as always, but it’s kind of boring. Nothing really happens until 2:15, when someone dumps a bunch of fake leaves on her. It’s a weird time to start dropping leaves because nothing happens in the song. It’s not at the bridge or after a big moment or anything. Also…is she sitting on a cinder block? The whole thing is just very conflicting other than the fact that she’s stunning and an icon.
Listen, this was hard for me to rank this low. I absolutely love the song, it’s one of my favorite songs ever. However, the video is just kinda whatever. We get a lot of random clips from the video, none having anything particularly to do with the song. We have one performance piece of Whitney and it’s fine, it’s just her head singing along to the song. It’s fine. It’s a fine video. I just wish there was more to it, I don’t know. Like a full body shot, or if the movie clips matched the song in any way. The song will always be one of my faves but the video is just fine.
This is a weird video, tbh. She looks great and the shots of her are amazing, but it frequently cuts to random photos that don’t seem to make sense or have to do with the song. People getting arrested, kids playing, people making out…it just seems like there wasn’t a real storyboard. Apparently the video made people think the song was about abortion, but I honestly don’t see that from this video at all. Do you see it? I just see random sad photos of regret mixed with happy photos that add to the confusion.
38). Star Spangled Banner
Okay, this isn’t really a music video, but it was a video so it’s going here. BUT ALSO – Did you know she performed it again and was flawless in 1991?
This one didn’t get as much attention as the first, but it really is great. I wish it was more well-known because I think it just proves that her talent was not rare or a fluke.
37). Queen of the Night
This is from The Bodyguard, obviously, but it’s pretty much just the performance piece in its entirety from the movie. There’s a lot of weird background clips on stage, and at 0:52 we get a confusing look at a girl who looks like she stumbled into the wrong video shoot. The Bodyguard version was actually more interesting, because at least then we got the thrill of watching Kevin Costner ninja-kick everyone out of her way. In this video we get a surprisingly low-energy take on what should be a high-energy song. Love the outfit and the singing, everything else is just ok.
36). I Learned From The Best
Whitney is serving A WHOLE LOOK here and I love it, but the rest of the video is kind of meh. The audience cheering and grooving is cringey at times, and no one can seem to get the facial expressions right. At 1:38 everyone looks tired and bored. At 1:42 and other close-ups, they look happy and excited. Then at 1:56 they’re randomly standing (are they even on set?) and look bored. I guess the plot is that she’s performing on some type of show, and her ex-lover is backstage? It’s some chiseled model looking sad in a dark room but there’s no info on who he is. He could be an extra who just got lost backstage or something, we’ll never know.
35). It Isn’t, It Wasn’t, It Ain’t Ever Gonna Be
This is the kind of video you should probably drop acid before watching (not that I’m advocating that or anything). The video randomly cuts away to still shots of Aretha Franklin again and again, like a subliminal message. We also get solo shots of Aretha singing in front of the neon squiggly lines that were the trademark of the late 80’s and early 90’s. Overall, this is a fun video. It’s energetic, everyone looks like they’re having fun, we get a lot of shots of Whitney laughing and dancing. Clearly, Whitney and Aretha didn’t film this together as they are on completely different stages. This isn’t entirely abnormal, artists today do this. It’s just interesting that they didn’t even attempt to incorporate any of the song’s theme into either video. It’s about two women fighting over one guy. They couldn’t have at least one of them pretend to be with a guy?
34). Try It On My Own
I talked about this video in my post where I ranked all of her songs (you can see it here), but this is an awkward video. Whitney was pretty notorious for being difficult at live performances in her later years, and that’s what this video is. She shows up late, refuses to read her cue cards, and Bobby Brown is mysteriously there for no reason. It really is art imitating life. The angry, middle-aged people play the villainous casting directors, pulling out their flip phones and scowling while making calls. But here’s the thing: They kind of have a right to be mad that the talent was late and isn’t doing what she’s supposed to, you know? It’s a weird video because it sort of underlines her real-life behavior and tries to paint it like it’s totally okay to do whatever you feel like, as long as you ‘try it on your own.’ That’s not what the song is about though, so it’s a strange misfire in my opinion.
33). I Belong to You
This video is pretty much just clips from “My Name is Not Susan” rearranged. I’m not sure which one came first, but the videos fit the storyline of “Susan” way better. There are a few extra clips here and there, but it was clearly all shot at the same time and they just re-arranged bits to make it different. I’m not super mad about it because it’s more Whitney, and I like this song way more than “Susan,” but it’s a low-effort video.
32). My Name is Not Susan (without Rap)
You’ll notice that there’s a qualifier here, and that’s because there are two different videos. They’re similar, but this one isn’t as good as the rap one. Overall, the video is confusing to me. We have Whitney playing the role of “Susan,” but she’s also playing the role of the woman singing the song. That would be fine, as she can certainly play both roles, but it seems like both characters change hairstyles and outfits so much that by the end, I have no idea who is who. There’s also a confusing bit where supposedly Susan is going by “Nippy,” which is Whitney’s actual nickname, so I’m not sure what to make of it. The boyfriend is a photographer/stalker/certified creeper, following both women around all day everyday. Supposedly this video was inspired by the Alfred Hitchcock movie “Vertigo.” I haven’t seen it so maybe that’s why I don’t understand this.
31). My Name is Not Susan (with Rap)
This video has a lot of the same footage, but we get extra shots of Whitney dancing with rapper Monie Love. Love adds a lot of flair and personality to the video and improves it, in my opinion. I still have no idea what is going on but whatever.
30). Didn’t We Almost Have It All
This is the official music video, but it’s actually a live performance. When this song was released it did not get good critical reception. People called it overblown and sappy, and while that may be true, they can all collectively suck it. When Whitney died this song was listed as one of her 25 best songs, probably by the same people who dragged it when it came out.
29). Do You Hear What I Hear? (Pentatonix Version)
I love Pentatonix so much. This is an incredible remix and I love the song overall (it’s #9 on my ranking of her songs). The video itself is beautiful.
I totally understand that they had to be careful about how to make a video. The lead singer is deceased, so they can’t use her, and it might seem narcissistic or in poor taste to film only Pentatonix. I personally wouldn’t have been offended by it, but I can see why they wouldn’t want to film themselves.
So, they put together this beautiful dance piece and it’s stunning. Visually and creatively incredible. I love it, it’s just that Whitney isn’t in it at all (except for the sweet message at the beginning). Since this is a ranking of *her* videos, I can’t rank this that high. It is a lovely video though and I absolutely love the remix.
Can we just talk about how amazing Jordin Sparks is? She looks stunning in the video, and quite honestly she carries the song. I think at this stage in her career, Whitney really needed her help to get through it. The video doesn’t feature Whitney in the performance piece, but we get clips of Sparkle throughout. The performance is a party scene and I need to point out two parts to you. At 0:49, did she really show up to a party with a half-eaten jar of jelly beans?? Who does that? How is that a thing? At 1:12, the girl who is NOT WHITNEY HOUSTON lip syncs her part and I said, “oh hell no” out loud. Other than that, the video is fun and they pay tribute to Whitney nicely. Since she’s not technically “in it” I moved it slightly lower in my ranking but it’s a good video overall.
27). Higher Love
Honestly, this is a fantastic music video. It features some of the hottest people you’ve ever seen in your life dancing in 80s gear and a lot of ass closeups. It’s pretty perfect, as far as music videos go. It just doesn’t have Whitney Houston in it, which sucks (she does make a few cameos in a poster on the wall and in an old video in the corner). I feel like they could have included her a *little* more in the video, but overall it has a cute storyline. Super hot dudes spying on super hot women, guy walks in and is suddenly transformed back into the 80s and dances with them. Girl wakes up and it was a dream. Everyone is hot. I don’t know, it’s great, just wish there were more posters of Whitney I guess.
26). Saving All My Love For You
This video won “Favorite Soul/R&B Video” at the AMAs in 1986, and I’m sort of confused as to why. We know from the song lyrics that she’s a mistress in an affair, but the video doesn’t really hone in on that story. There are many random shots of her laughing in a restaurant with a group of friends, the guy spying on his wife at the DMV (? I still don’t know what that scene is) and the timeline of events doesn’t really make sense. The wife in the video is beautiful, but we get the same exact video shot of her twice. Still, the video beat out “Oh Sheila” by Ready for the World and “Freeway of Love” by Aretha Franklin, so I guess it proves that any semblance of a story beats straight performance pieces.
25). So Emotional
This is a fine music video I guess, it’s just a fake live performance piece. They try to make it more “real” by adding applause here and there, but it’s super fake sounding. The choreography and everything looks like they actually put work into it, so it gets points for that. She looks amazing as always.
24). Why Does It Hurt So Bad
I think this is supposed to be the official music video, even though it’s a live performance. I’m not sure about that, though, because it’s not on her official YouTube page and I had to get this from an account that might get shut down. The performance is absolutely incredible, so please watch it! Video-wise, it’s okay. The stage looks really nice and Whitney looks good, if a little tired and hot. Honestly, she could have just gotten hit by a car and had her arm torn off and she’d still look incredible so there really isn’t a high bar here.
23). Something in Common
This is actually a pretty high-quality video. I say “actually” because let’s face it, the song is just kinda meh. It’s a very in-your-face attempt to convince us all that Bobby and Whitney had a great relationship. The video has great scenes of them joking around and laughing, almost enough to convince us that the lyrics are true. Whitney looks great and has a cute swimsuit on in the pool. It’s really a pretty simple video, just several shots in different outfits centered around water. At 3:47 it totally looks like they’re screwing in the pool, which, I don’t know about you, but I could have done without seeing. At the end they show baby Bobbi Kristina, which is cute and heartbreaking at the same time.
22). Could I Have This Kiss Forever
This is basically Enrique Iglesias and Whitney Houston singing in front of several orgies. I think it’s supposed to be a “party” but it definitely looks like a bunch of people banging. Also, Whitney looks incredible as always but, at 2:36 you see the full dress and it looks like it got caught in a weed wacker. I know those weird, uneven skirt lengths are popular but they look weird to me (and on me).
21). If I Told You That
Whitney’s green coat thing is great (although it’s probably real fur which I do not condone). It’s a fun video, just her and George Michael and a fancy club party. What’s funny about it is there’s a dance floor with a ton of really talented dancers, and then Whitney and George go out there and…don’t dance at all. They sort of sway back and forth and give a few shoulder shakes and that’s it. But I guess since they’re the stars it doesn’t matter if they can break dance or not. There are also bubbles blowing on them, but only in certain camera shots so when they cut to different takes there are suddenly bubbles or no bubbles. Not a complaint, just funny.
20). Million Dollar Bill
I really do not like this song. I know people disagree with me and that’s fine, I just find it very grating. However, this is a cool video if I watch it on mute. We start with her entering a laundromat, going through the back of a kitchen where a chef ceremoniously presents a plate of chopped cucumber and tomatoes. He pours clearly raw vegetables out of a pan as if he just cooked them, which is totally something I would do if I was married and had to cook for my husband. Seriously though, look at 0:25. How is that a plate of food you would serve? We then proceed to an almost empty nightclub, where Whitney performs. We also get multiple outfit changes, which doesn’t happen often in her videos. The song has no live instruments and yet there is a live band backing her in the video, but the bass player is female which is awesome. My favorite scene from this is the long sparkly dress with money flying in the air, because that’s exactly how I want to live my life.
19). You Give Good Love
This was Whitney’s first single video, so it’s groundbreaking for that reason alone. However, the video itself is kind of unsettling. You’ve got this guy hanging out with his video camera in a hotel (?) bar, and suddenly he hears Whitney singing. He follows the angelic sound and then begins recording her, without her expressed written consent. Rude. Then you have the cooks come out of the kitchen to leer at her creepily, and the whole thing is just kind of off-putting. Also, why are the chefs’ shirts unbuttoned? What the hell is going on in that kitchen?
I also want to bring your attention to this live version, because it gives me actual chills. Please check it out if you haven’t yet!
18). Run To You
This is a video that was actually the music video IN the movie. You know, the one where Kevin Costner is staring at it like he’s watching late night porn, and Whitney catches him doing it but says nothing, and we all pretend like it isn’t creepy? That one. That scene is actually in this video, at 2:21. The video is nice and we get shots from the movie throughout, but mostly it’s an extreme closeup of Whitney’s face. She has a gorgeous face, but the makeup bugs me in this. Her eyeshadow is this weird dull grey, and for a video that’s mostly zoomed in directly on her face you’d think they’d do a better makeup job. I suck at makeup so I have no right to judge, but I just find it an odd choice for a ‘look.’
17). I Have Nothing
I like this one slightly better than “Run to You” because we get two amazing videos of her performing in dazzling outfits. This video is really similar to the others from the album, in that most of it is shots from the movie.
16). Count On Me
I love this music video, I really do. I don’t have an issue with it (except at 2:13 they’re suddenly on stage and the ‘audience’ erupts into THUNDEROUS applause that really doesn’t need to be there. Like it’s louder than the singing. But that’s a small thing that I can live with). You’ve got Whitney and Cece Winans and they’re hanging out, driving, doing friend things, and singing. Then you’ve got clips from the incredible “Waiting to Exhale” movie throughout as well. Why wasn’t Cece Winans in the movie? I don’t know if she’s ever acted before but she’s beautiful and that would have been cool. Anyway I love the video but I have to rank it somewhere so…here it is. This is hard now!
15). Greatest Love of All
The storyline is really cute. We have adult Whitney on an empty stage, reminiscing about being forced into the spotlight by her stage mom (played by her actual stage mom, Cissy Houston). It gives an inspiring and adorable look at shoving kids into the spotlight as soon as possible in order to maximize their earning potential, but this didn’t happen with Whitney in real life. Her parents and even Clive Davis went on record as purposely holding her back at times to make sure she was really “ready.” Either way, it’s just a pretty video and I like it.
14). It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay
She looks AMAZING in this and I love the gothic outfit and makeup. There’s a crowd of angry women, I’m guessing they’ve all been cheated on also. There’s also a group of dancers in army outfits, which doesn’t make any sense? I mean, they’re not actual military outfits but I think that’s what they’re supposed to be. We rarely get a look at any actual dance moves because the camera zooms in too closely on them, so it’s a lot of shots of asses and elbows.
13). One Of Those Days
So this video is amazing because it allows us to live vicariously and imagine that we are Whitney’s friend at the spa and club with her. I imagine putting a gawky redhead in the video wouldn’t have been as visually pleasing, so unfortunately I never got the call to be in this. I’m just saying, if I were friends with Whitney I totally would have been cool and normal and wouldn’t have accidentally left song ideas all over her house. At the club scene we have a guest appearance by Ronald Isley, who co-wrote “Between the Sheets.” “One of Those Days” samples that song, so it’s a fun little cameo and a nod to the original. Also, this isn’t a critique or complaint per se, but what is she doing with her tongue? She does that a lot and I don’t know if it’s a singing technique or what.
12). Heartbreak Hotel
The shots in this video are incredible. I could watch Whitney on the beach in that red dress for 46 hours without needing a break, and Faith Evans and Kelly Price look amazing as well.
However, the video has moments that just don’t make a lot of sense. At 0:54, we get the first of many shots where it looks like they’re about to perform surgery. The outfits look like scrubs and it looks like Whitney is wearing surgical gloves. At 1:12, we get one shot of a guy sitting in a chair, and that’s the only time he is seen. At 2:37, there’s a random woman looking forlornly at the ceiling. Did they film a plot and just didn’t include it? I’m confused. They really don’t add to the story and there are plenty of other great shots to include (more of the red dress plz). The end scene when Whitney throws the coat into the ocean is iconic and I’ve always wanted to do that.
11). When You Believe
I cannot tell you how much I loved both of these women as a young child. I still do. The video is decent, it’s mostly a performance piece where they sing on a stage with clips from the movie (The Prince of Egypt) playing behind them. They look great and we get clips of them doing random things, but overall it’s a pretty simple video. I ranked it higher than others simply because it’s two absolute icon legend queens and this video should be put in a pyramid as proof of humanity’s greatness.
There’s also this video of them singing “live” in the studio:
This is totally not live at all (there’s no way they could move around the mic that much and get consistent sound) but it’s cool to hear different vocal takes.
10). My Love is Your Love
This has all of the elements of a great video: A storyline, gorgeous performance shots, and great editing. I really have no complaints about it, but there are so many great videos of her that I’m having a hard time ranking them in any sensible way.
9). How Will I Know
Okay, come on. This video is legendary and we all know it. She looks stunning in it, giant-ass hair bow and all. There really isn’t a plot, but it doesn’t need one. The manic, limb-flailing dancers add excitement in a chaotic and weird way. I’m here for it, all of it.
Funny enough, here’s a video of Whitney talking about how it’s her least favorite video (at 10:30):
“I looked the craziest, I had on like all kinds of hair colors mixed in with other hair. It was just wild, it was very Euro.” If I ever get married, this will be the exact theme.
8). I Wanna Dance With Somebody
I will say, the intro is kind of annoying. It’s a loop of the intro and fake laughter and there’s no point to it. It’s a setup scene where she’s leaving the stage for some reason and has no connection to the rest of the video.
That being said, THIS WAS MY FAVORITE VIDEO EVER. I was too young when it came out but I think I first saw it when I was about 6 years old, and it’s been my goal to make my life as similar to this video as possible. I will say, I’ve been pretty successful thus far. Everyday I put on an amazing outfit and bully men into dancing with me.
The reason I’m ranking it lower is because I’m only judging videos and not songs. It’s a cute video but she has better ones.
7). All The Man That I Need
Spoiler alert – this was my #1 song in my post where I ranked all her songs, so obviously this video has to be high on my list. It is an amazing video, but it was also the first video where I really realized how incredible she was. I remember being super young and staring up at the TV, captivated by her beauty and voice. Seeing this video takes me right back there.
It’s a pretty simple video overall, but at the end she comes out on stage in that amazing dress. And the shots are great, it’s a great song, and I love it for personal, sentimental reasons.
6). I’m Every Woman
This really is a great video, I don’t have much to say about it. My one slight critique is that I wish it were in color for more of it. Just a personal preference. But other than that it’s solid. We have a cameo from the legend and original singer Chaka Kahn. We have little girls dancing and many women joining in the chorus to show that we are all every woman. Or to show that Whitney is actually all of them, I’m not sure which. At 2:42 we have a woman dancing so hard she starts coughing, and for some reason that made it into the final cut. Whitney is heavily pregnant in this and I think it’s the most she’s ever weighed in her entire life, so probably about 100 lbs. I’m not thin-shaming, just saying it’s interesting that this is probably her largest size ever and she is still a size Medium at Forever 21.
5). Where Do Broken Hearts Go
This video checks off every box for me: There’s a storyline, a nice performance shot, and nothing seems overdone or out of place. Wikipedia has some important info about this video, so I’m just going to paste the whole thing here:
Houston is depicted in various “glamour girl” shots throughout the video; Arista executives reportedly joked at the time, “there’s her screen test”, referring to rumors about Houston’s Hollywood ambitions…Houston’s performance in the video’s 1940s-themed train station scene (filmed at Newark Penn Station) convinced Kevin Costner of her acting abilities for The Bodyguard.
The video was moderately controversial since the ambiguous ethnic background of Houston’s love interest (reportedly Houston’s then real-life love interest, New York restaurateur Brad Johnson) highlighted the racial sensitivities that accompanied Houston’s success during the 1980s. The singer had been criticized for “selling out” and “acting white”. A mostly-black audience jeered when “Where Do Broken Hearts Go” was nominated for an award at the 1989 Soul Train Music Awards.
Here’s the whole link if you want to read about the song. This video is responsible for The Bodyguard, and for that reason alone it’s important.
4). I Believe in You and Me
This video is set in a forest, where Whitney hallucinates scenes from The Preacher’s Wife in delightfully cheesy 90’s animation. I’m not mad about it, in fact I quite enjoy it. My hallucinations also feature Whitney Houston dancing in 90’s glitter transitions, so I can’t complain about this. Mid-song she is now on stage performing to a crowd of freezing people. It’s like those people who choose to get married in the winter outside, because they truly hate their friends and family. At least with this, they get to listen to Whitney Houston. Who’s performing at your wedding, Karen? Your cousin? Not good enough, sorry, can’t attend.
Does anyone else think this song should have been bigger than it was? It’s really good and her voice is phenomenal in it. I don’t know if it’s because the movie wasn’t as big as The Bodyguard, but I really wish more people knew about this song.
3). Step By Step
This is a really cool concept for a video, where they take a part of the movie and make its own sub-story. If you haven’t seen The Preacher’s Wife, first of all, what is wrong with you?! GO DO IT! In the movie, one of the issues is that the youth shelter burned down. In the video, it takes that story and makes it the whole video. The kids all join together to rebuild the shelter, taking breaks to dance with Whitney, who does not help at all. Clips from the movie don’t appear in the video. We don’t have any flashbacks or scenes from it, so you would only know the storyline if you’ve seen the movie. I just think that’s unique and a cool idea.
2). I’m Your Baby Tonight
I LOVE THIS VIDEO. They really went all out with this one. Multiple sets and outfits, with Whitney paying homage to artists who inspired her. She also has a lot of choreographed dancing, which is rare for her videos. I’ll admit, this one is nostalgic for me, because this is right around the age of when I became aware of Whitney (or music in general) so this video was mesmerizing. It still is.
But also, check out the dude in the bottom right in the blue suit at 2:16. I have seen this video no less than 30 million times and I just noticed him, but I can’t stop laughing.
1). I Will Always Love You
I mean, come on. How iconic is this video? I ranked the song pretty low for some people’s tastes, but the video HAS to be high. We get scenes from the movie along with her performing the song on an empty stage. I love the part at the big chorus at 3:10 where she’s suddenly out in the snow. I’ve seen The Bodyguard probably 900 million times, and watching this video makes me want to watch the movie again.
Bonus: Love To Infinity
Okay, so technically this is a remix and it’s a mashup of almost all of her videos. But that reason alone is why I love it so much. We get snippets of all of the best moments, and there are even shots of her rehearsing and performing live. It’s so much Whitney crammed into so little time that you really have to be paying attention and not drunk like I was when I first saw it. It can be a little overwhelming and I don’t think they needed all of the bright neon squiggles and transitions, but other than that this is a solid tribute to my Supreme.