Britney Spears’s 30 Most Memorable Moments
December 2 is a big day in the life of Britney Spears. It's her 30th birthday. She's not a girl and she IS a woman, y'all. In her twenties, Britney experienced some big highs--and even bigger lows--but now her career and personal life seem to be back on track. So to celebrate both her 30th birthday and her career rebirth, we're reviewing, in chronological order, the 30 biggest moments in her circus-like life.
Britney Wins, Then Loses, On 'Star Search'
Yes, people: Long ago, Britney Spears really was that innocent. In 1992, as an 11-year-old spitfire, Britney competed on the American Idol-prototype talent show Star Search, and man, was she ever adorable! She won the first round of competition, but was ultimately voted off...but regardless, a star was born. And oddly, she seemed to sing better when she was still a girl, not yet a woman. Just look at how she belts it out here:
Britney Rocks That Schoolgirl Skirt
One of the most iconic videos in MTV history, 1998's "Baby One More Time" instantly catapulted Britney, who was only 16 at the time, to pop-superstar status--and perhaps somewhat troublingly, it turned her into an underage sex symbol as well. Just what is about a school uniform that turns men to mush, huh?:
Britney's On The Cover Of The Rolling Stone
The questionable marketing of teenage Britney as a modern-day Lolita continued with her cover shoot--lensed by controversial photographer David La Chapelle--for Rolling Stone in April 1999. The image of Britney in skimpy sleepwear raised eyebrows/temperatures/concerns throughout the music world. Did it do any damage to Britney's young, developing psyche to be so obviously objectified? We'll never know for sure. But we do know that this provocative photo sure did sell quite a few issues of the magazine.
Britney Rocks That Bodysuit
At the 2000 VMAs, Britney ripped off her tuxedo to reveal a flesh-colored bodystocking that clung to every inch of her perfectly personal-trainered physique. Did she sing well? Was she lip-synching? Did it matter? This was the performance of a star, Britney at her sexy best.
Britney Is A "Slave 4 U"
Britney's metamorphosis from virginal, pigtailed America's sweetheart to full-on bombshell reached completion with the release of her third, self-titled album in 2001, and its seriously sexy lead single, "I'm A Slave 4 U." The song's video--in which a bunch of sweaty, grunty backup dancers got all up in Britney's bizness, and Britney inexplicably wore underwear on the outside of her pants (ironic, considering her tendency to forget underwear altogether later in life)--had a lot to do with that image makeover. But it was more than that. "Slave," written and produced by the Neptunes and originally intended for OG pop bombshell Janet Jackson, evoked the old-school sexcapades of Prince and his protégés Vanity 6--and in many ways, it was a real artistic leap for bubblegum Britney. But most Brit-pop fans probably paid more attention to her sweat-slicked six-pack and underwear-as-outerwear fashion sense than to her sophisticated new sound: