“Britney Spears can’t dance like she used to.”
…It starts there. It’s bad enough when a naysayer says her talent is gone. But it’s just as bad watching fans constantly waiting for Britney Spears to “dance like she used to” so they can have strong evidence to proudly argue, “SHE’S BACK!”
Truth is: Britney Spears has been “back” since 2008 when she released her album ‘Circus’ less than a year after her wildly publicized breakdown.
She’s really never been gone. But it seems like the anticipation and whispers proceeding each of her post-‘In The Zone’ albums have been whether or not she still has “it.” Every album since has been referred to as a “comeback” and that should end now; starting with the Britney-Army. Fans are holding themselves back from enjoying Britney’s new music and performances by having apprehensions and irrational performance standards towards her. If you’re waiting for Britney to released another “Toxic” or “Slave 4 U” then you are always going to be let down and disappointed because that is just never going happen. These expectations are not allowing us to receive innovative and envelope-pushing music that have made her music so successful in the past. When fans steamroll the direction for an artist by challenging them to give them exactly what they want, it usually fails. Much like Britney’s “Work Bitch,” both the song and video were the magnum opus of her most-recognized style but it failed to have the huge success that was expected by fans; I call this the “Work Bitch Conundrum:”
“Work Bitch” was Britney’s response to every fan’s request that she show the haters that she’s still “got it.” She does, of course, and fans went crazy the days that the song and video were released. They were like, “OH MY GAHHHH, BRITNEY IS BACK YOU BITCHESSSS! LOOK AT HER!” So why wasn’t it successful? That is because the public didn’t care. They still saw Britney in another failed attempt to outdo her earlier (untouchable) work. In turn, this just made fans fall back into hoping that the next album she will do it even better to prove everyone that they’re still wrong. Thus irrationally raising expectations, once again, and causing yet another unneeded “comeback” situation. Which will still not happen. (Most pop-veterans of her caliber are all met with the same challenge eventually)
Britney Spears is nearly 10 years older than when she had her breakdown and over 12 years older than her “Toxic” days. She is not going to look the same (so stop posting side-by-side pictures of her face/body) and she also has new stories to tell and emotions to express to her fans.
When I say that comparing her to her younger years is holding you back; I am saying that when she is killing it at her Las Vegas show, “Britney: Piece of Me,” it is because that’s who she is right now. And that has no regard to what she’s accomplished in the past or what she will in the future.
Fans have been so accustomed to their expectations from Britney that they have lost the excitement of enjoying new songs and performances with new ears– just as we all did when Britney shocked us in 2001 with a new urban sound in “Slave 4 U.” That song separated her from her bubblegum pop style she had before.
So when #B9 is released, let’s all just allow Britney Spears to live past her 2007 breakdown (have to get this in one last time: Stop posting shearsney and umbrella-ney) and early performances that are always brought up to overshadow (with unnecessary photo comparisons and before/afters) the hard work she’s been putting in for her new show and album. We love you, Britney.