Britney Spears’ VMA-opening performance last night: Was it bad, was it pretty bad, or was it beyond awful? A smattering of reactions from various members of the media follows after the jump.
• “Thanks to her annus horribilis — or, more accurately, anni horribiles — she was one of the most anticipated VMA performers in years. Voyeurs around the world were ready to see a fallen star back onstage. She didn’t disappoint: she was awful. Visibly nervous, she tottered around the stage, dancing tentatively and doing nothing that sounded or looked like real live singing. It’s too bad, because the song itself, “Gimme More,” is a pleasant surprise: brash and sleek and unapologetic. But Sunday’s performance in Las Vegas didn’t seem very likely to stem the tide of mean-spirited jokes about Ms. Spears.” [NYT]
• “But there was nothing memorable about Spears last night. Lip-syncing the thin, breathy vocals, she seemed bored. At one point, she stopped moving her lips altogether. The performer has been through a lot since the last time she wowed the MTV crowd. Perhaps last night, she still had a lot on her mind.” [Baltimore Sun]
• “Britney Spears’ first major performance in three years, at the MTV Video Music Awards in Las Vegas, has been widely dismissed as a disaster. The BBC’s David Willis said her performance would ‘go down in the history books as being one of the worst to grace the MTV Awards’. … Singer and producer Akon added that ‘it definitely could have been a lot better’. ‘She seemed nervous… you could tell by the expression on her face,’ he said.” [BBC]
• “You couldn’t even get good hair extensions?????? You have no one to blame for your failure but YOU! There was no way you were going to be good. You were out partying every night before the VMAs for three days in a row until almost sunrise! You were probably still drunk or high during your performance!!! You almost tripped a few times, you fucking mess!!!!!!!” [Perez Hilton]
• “With images of chandeliers floating on the screen behind her mixed with silhouettes of women befitting the intro reel to a James Bond flick, Spears walked across the stage as her scantily clad dancers worked a series of stripper poles scattered throughout the room. And then, after all that hype, a relieved-looking Brit gave a shy smile, whispered “thank you” and exited after a low-key performance that was quickly overshadowed by the likes of high-energy sets from the Foo Fighters, Chris Brown, Kanye and the most talked-about hookup (or is it right hook?) of the night: a scuffle between Pamela Anderson’s former husbands, Kid Rock and Tommy Lee, that had Diddy and Jamie Foxx pleading with rock stars to end the violence.” [MTV, putting on its best "we may need access to her in 2008 if we're still this screwed" game face]