It is nearly twenty years since the most iconic moment in modern music history: when Madonna, aged forty-five, made out with two women nearly half her age on the MTV Video Music Awards stage. Britney Spears, who was twenty-one, and Christina Aguilera, twenty-two, were pounced on in front of millions of television viewers, along with an uncomfortable looking Justin Timberlake and Guy Ritchie.
Two decades later and Madonna would likely be canceled for sexual harassment, with Britney and Xtina offered therapy and a book deal to “speak their truth.” But in August 2003, Madonna pulling off a garter from Aguilera’s leg, frenching Spears and then giving Aguilera a smacker on the lips was a standard Saturday night watch.
It has often been said that Xtina’s snog was less impactful than Britney and Madonna’s embrace — but in hindsight, Cockburn thinks that the “Genie in a Bottle” singer got the last laugh.
Madonna, now sixty-four, has had so much plastic surgery that she looks worse than she did at forty-five, with a face like Leatherface’s Mask. She was also released from the ICU this weekend, after suffering a mystery bacterial infection.
Things haven’t fared much better for Britney Spears, after what Cockburn would characterize as a significant breakdown of her mental health over the last few years, as evidenced on her Instagram account, where Spears posts videos of herself standing, hands awkwardly in pockets, reciting swear words. Another has her pretending to be dead, handcuffed and covered in blood. Today Spears announced the release date of her new memoir, The Woman in Me, which will come out October 24.
As for Xtina, the singer seems to be killing it: her Instagram shows her to be spending time with her children and leading a happy and fulfilled life further from the spotlight. She has two children, a son, Max, who she shares with Jordan Bratman, and a daughter Summer, with Matthew Rutler. Good for her, getting the “Dirrty” out of her system early on…