Arts and Entertainment

Oops, she came back again

By Denebola
Published: December 2008

By Rachel Lodi

In the waning days of the 20th century and the peak of the teen pop sensation, every young girls’ attention was centered on one icon: Britney Spears. Grouped with N’Sync, the Backstreet Boys, and Christina Aguilera, she fit perfectly with the trend.
She merely followed producers and songwriters who used her strictly for revenue. After all, she had the tools to be the perfect role model: she was young, virginal, Southern, and, best of all, happy. But, as it happens with all happy young teens, they grow up.

Britney started with “¦Baby One More Time, an addictive song that immediately topped the billboard charts.  A year or so later, she came out with “Oops, I Did It Again, following her same generic pop trend. After two huge multi-platinum selling albums, she seemed to have the method down to a science: date teen idol Justin Timberlake, be open about her vow to stay a virgin before marriage, and produce songs that complemented her simple voice.

Then Britney rebelled. She came out with her third self-titled album Britney, and the first single “I’m A Slave 4 U was far from virginal. In her music video, hot, sweaty men rub their muscles against the once innocent songstress. This self-proclaimed reincarnation was the beginning to Britney’s sexual liberation, and perhaps her impending collapse.

In 2003, she released her fourth studio album In the Zone. In the Zone, although it went platinum, was her lowest selling record. As she grew up and started to experiment with her sexuality in her music, the media began to scrutinize her every move. Everyone remembers MTV’s 2003 Video Music Awards when Britney and Madonna shared a kiss.

At this point in her life, Britney started to rebel even more. She began to study Kabbalah with Madonna, she married a childhood friend on a whim in Las Vegas for 55 hours, and then, finally, she married back-up dancer Kevin Federline.  She was settling for trailer trash and she was an irresponsible mother.

After her two-year marriage to Kevin Federline ended, Britney went crazy. She started partying with Paris Hilton and threatening the paparazzi. She eventually shaved her head. She also lost her children in a custody battle and was hospitalized twice. Britney Spears suddenly became the embarrassing part of the CD collection.

After Blackout, her fifth album, Britney’s father gained legal control over her and her assets. She lost her kids, her independence, and almost her career. Just when we thought the teen queen couldn’t fall any further, she finally hit rock bottom.

Over the summer, we have witnessed the first stages of Britney’s new image. Her first single off her sixth studio album Circus entitled “Womanizer is just as addictive and catchy as her earlier works. It requires no strain on her voice and allows her to do what she does best: dance in music videos. Her album Circus was released right before her birthday on December 2.

She has been doing multiple TV appearances, including her birthday party on Good Morning America and the MTV documentary Britney Spears: For the Record.

As she admits in the documentary, she wishes she could escape to a deserted island with her sons, with whom she has reclaimed visitation rights.

This statement begs the question, why not leave? Why not leave Los Angeles and take a long break from stardom? Of all the celebrities stalked by paparazzi, Britney Spears has it just about as bad as it gets, so why not leave her career behind? The answer is that this life is all she knows.

She is once again in the position of entrapment; her father handles her legal matters, she has assistants and managers organizing her every step, and her album is once again a publicity tool. She is blonde again, but can she ever be happy again? Her comeback is in the works, but is she right back in 1999 where she started?

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