Last season on "The X Factor," Britney Spears was Simon Cowell's golden girl, the superstar with a $15 million salary who was supposed to save the show after a sluggish first season.
But obviously that didn't work out, and now Simon has moved on to new judges Kelly Rowland and Paulina Rubio, with whom he seems to share some actual chemistry. And he doesn't appear to be missing Brit Brit too much, based on a new "X Factor" clip that seems like a blatant jab at his former co-star.
Of course, maybe Simon was just being sarcastic, semi-gently teasing this clueless (and tuneless) male Britney wannabe who dared to cover "Baby One More Time." But that's not how many fans took it.
Examples of comments on YouTube, after the video was uploaded Tuesday night, include:
"LOL, Simon is just mad because Brit took her $15 million and RAN from this show. HAHAHAHAHA!!"
"Britney deserves to be shaded. She tried to play mean girl the first couple episodes for attention with her 'you need a teacher to teach you how to sing' and 'you can't do that to a Whitney song' nastiness. Britney can stay pressed."
"haha! Simon is mad because X Factor without Britney Spears will be a MASSIVE FLOP!!! :D"
"Someone is mad britney doesn't to be apart of his flopping show."
"If you think you are better than her, you should come to the stage. Idiot."
"Sadly, it's true. She was highly medicated the whole time lol. I thought she would've been an amazing addition to the show, but nope..."
"F*** you simon! Britney are the best, and you are so pathetic..."
And, of course, the inevitable: "Leave Britney alone!"
Do you think Simon was throwing Britney shade? Let me know in the comments section below!