35. Criminal (2011)
All Britney needs in her life of sin, is she and her boyfriend. The “Criminal” video is very ambitious, but it works. Shot in London, directed by “I Wanna Go” director Chris Marrs Piliero and co-starring her real-life boyfriend (and former agent) Jason, the video tells the story of a woman who falls for a criminal.
Britney has an arsehole boyfriend who, while he is very pretty, is also abusive, violent and a two-timer. Empowered by seven squirts of her perfume, Britney stands up for herself. This leads to a violent confrontation outside, with a leather-clad stranger coming to Britney’s rescue.
Black-clad narrator Britney tells the story (for the real Britney does not run off with criminals), while story Britney finds herself holed up with the criminal in a scungy flat. There is chemistry between them, so they head to bed. Criminal is revealed to have a giant back tattoo as well as “RIP GOOSE” on his chest. Who is this Goose person?
A convenience store hold-up turns to a life of crime, turning the pair into a ‘11 Bonnie and Clyde. Holla. They’re on the front of the papers. Britney doesn’t wear a disguise, presumedly because her hair is too awesome mess up.
Feeling dirty, they have a shower. And this is full-on naked-man-and-lady, getting wet in a shower business. See, Britney’s still got it.
Less impressed are the local constabulary, who descent upon the flat with automatic weapons. The flat is shot up with bullet holes (hey, even more Bonnie and Clyde). Are the lovers doomed?
The cops raid the flat, but can’t find any sign of the pair. “The suspects have left the building,” one cop radios in, getting all Elvis. Finally we see a shot of the couple riding off together. Watch out - Britney’s got a taste for the criminal life and some high-maintenance hair extensions. It is really good to finally see another Britney video where she properly ends up with the guy, even though the narrative suggests things won’t be plain sailing.
I’m not so fond of the song itself, but the video packs so much style and drama into it that I can’t help but love it. This feels like proper, grown-up Britney. No more frou-frou. This is what Britney is comfortable with now.
—-
So that ends my look at Britney Spears’ videographic oeuvre. It doesn’t look like there’ll be any more singles released from “Femme Fatale”, but when her next video comes out, I’ll review it.
Lessons learned: Britney has major yet understandable issues with the paparazzi; her early videos relied on her not getting the guy or being all independent; and you’re never fully dressed without a liberal dose of a Britney Spears perfume.
And for more Britney video fun, MTV are having a tournament to figure out the ultimate Britney Spears video. Womanizer is my pick, but the voting public don’t agree!

35. Criminal (2011)

All Britney needs in her life of sin, is she and her boyfriend. The “Criminal” video is very ambitious, but it works. Shot in London, directed by “I Wanna Go” director Chris Marrs Piliero and co-starring her real-life boyfriend (and former agent) Jason, the video tells the story of a woman who falls for a criminal.

Britney has an arsehole boyfriend who, while he is very pretty, is also abusive, violent and a two-timer. Empowered by seven squirts of her perfume, Britney stands up for herself. This leads to a violent confrontation outside, with a leather-clad stranger coming to Britney’s rescue.

Black-clad narrator Britney tells the story (for the real Britney does not run off with criminals), while story Britney finds herself holed up with the criminal in a scungy flat. There is chemistry between them, so they head to bed. Criminal is revealed to have a giant back tattoo as well as “RIP GOOSE” on his chest. Who is this Goose person?

A convenience store hold-up turns to a life of crime, turning the pair into a ‘11 Bonnie and Clyde. Holla. They’re on the front of the papers. Britney doesn’t wear a disguise, presumedly because her hair is too awesome mess up.

Feeling dirty, they have a shower. And this is full-on naked-man-and-lady, getting wet in a shower business. See, Britney’s still got it.

Less impressed are the local constabulary, who descent upon the flat with automatic weapons. The flat is shot up with bullet holes (hey, even more Bonnie and Clyde). Are the lovers doomed?

The cops raid the flat, but can’t find any sign of the pair. “The suspects have left the building,” one cop radios in, getting all Elvis. Finally we see a shot of the couple riding off together. Watch out - Britney’s got a taste for the criminal life and some high-maintenance hair extensions. It is really good to finally see another Britney video where she properly ends up with the guy, even though the narrative suggests things won’t be plain sailing.

I’m not so fond of the song itself, but the video packs so much style and drama into it that I can’t help but love it. This feels like proper, grown-up Britney. No more frou-frou. This is what Britney is comfortable with now.

—-

So that ends my look at Britney Spears’ videographic oeuvre. It doesn’t look like there’ll be any more singles released from “Femme Fatale”, but when her next video comes out, I’ll review it.

Lessons learned: Britney has major yet understandable issues with the paparazzi; her early videos relied on her not getting the guy or being all independent; and you’re never fully dressed without a liberal dose of a Britney Spears perfume.

And for more Britney video fun, MTV are having a tournament to figure out the ultimate Britney Spears video. Womanizer is my pick, but the voting public don’t agree!

Britney Spears

34. I Wanna Go (2011)
This is the funniest and weirdest video Britney has made, and it also looks to be the definitive take on the “Britney versus the paparazzi” situation. It starts with a press conference. Reporters are asking her dumb questions and she has a little fun with the answers before getting annoyed and telling them all to beep off.
Out on the street, Britney has a flirtatious encounter with a fan, flashes a cop then seduces her way out of a citation. An intrusive photographer is all up in her grill. She plays along but then smashes his camera. Aw yeah.
This then leads to a car rooftop standoff between Britney and the paparazzi, in front of a cinema playing “Crossroads 2: Cross Harder”. I would see that movie.
Britney swings her microphone, whipping the paparazzi with video-game like skill. Just as well it wasn’t a cordless mic. But wait - the paparazzi are actually cyborgs and they come back to life, red eyes glowing, intent on revenge.
Britney’s bodyguard shows up in his convertible and they make a quick getaway. Best bit - while cruising in the countryside, the bodyguard tips a carton of milk over him, which Britney seems to find rather arousing. See, she told you she was freaky.
But the bodyguard turns out to be a cyborg, then Britney wakes up and it was all a dream. There’s a weird bit where the bodyguard gives her some seashells, and then they leave the horrible press conference. But Guillermo the bodyguard turns to the camera and reveals his glowing red cyborg eyes. That’s ok - Britney will take care of things.

34. I Wanna Go (2011)

This is the funniest and weirdest video Britney has made, and it also looks to be the definitive take on the “Britney versus the paparazzi” situation. It starts with a press conference. Reporters are asking her dumb questions and she has a little fun with the answers before getting annoyed and telling them all to beep off.

Out on the street, Britney has a flirtatious encounter with a fan, flashes a cop then seduces her way out of a citation. An intrusive photographer is all up in her grill. She plays along but then smashes his camera. Aw yeah.

This then leads to a car rooftop standoff between Britney and the paparazzi, in front of a cinema playing “Crossroads 2: Cross Harder”. I would see that movie.

Britney swings her microphone, whipping the paparazzi with video-game like skill. Just as well it wasn’t a cordless mic. But wait - the paparazzi are actually cyborgs and they come back to life, red eyes glowing, intent on revenge.

Britney’s bodyguard shows up in his convertible and they make a quick getaway. Best bit - while cruising in the countryside, the bodyguard tips a carton of milk over him, which Britney seems to find rather arousing. See, she told you she was freaky.

But the bodyguard turns out to be a cyborg, then Britney wakes up and it was all a dream. There’s a weird bit where the bodyguard gives her some seashells, and then they leave the horrible press conference. But Guillermo the bodyguard turns to the camera and reveals his glowing red cyborg eyes. That’s ok - Britney will take care of things.

Britney Spears

33. Till The World Ends (2011)
Keeping with the vaguely sci-fi theme of the “Femme Fatale” era videos, “Till The World Ends” is set on December 21 2012. That’s the day before my 38th birthday, but is better known as one of those “OMG, teh world is end!!!” dates.
So what do you do when the world is ending? You gather all your freaky hot friends together to have a bit of a dance and be all beautiful, somewhat reminiscent of the “I’m A Slave 4 U” video.
Down into the apocalyptic underground world we go. It’s very hot down there, and it seems all there is to do is writhe sensually.
The song has really sexual verses that explode into giant, highly danceable choruses, and the video works with this. In the verses, Britney struts around, flirting with boys and hanging out with writing groups of her fellow refugees.
When the chorus comes, it’s a giant dance fest, with everyone joining in. There’s a hint of another old video - at one stage Britney wears a red bodysuit. But unlike the flared version in “Oops… I Did It Again”, this one is much tighter and has an external underwear design in crystals.
The sprinklers go off in this underground lair, confirming the Britney video rule that people look better when they’re wet. The video ends with Britney emerging meerkat-like from a manhole, seeing the sun shining. Aw, see, it wasn’t the end of the world; it was just a little rain.

33. Till The World Ends (2011)

Keeping with the vaguely sci-fi theme of the “Femme Fatale” era videos, “Till The World Ends” is set on December 21 2012. That’s the day before my 38th birthday, but is better known as one of those “OMG, teh world is end!!!” dates.

So what do you do when the world is ending? You gather all your freaky hot friends together to have a bit of a dance and be all beautiful, somewhat reminiscent of the “I’m A Slave 4 U” video.

Down into the apocalyptic underground world we go. It’s very hot down there, and it seems all there is to do is writhe sensually.

The song has really sexual verses that explode into giant, highly danceable choruses, and the video works with this. In the verses, Britney struts around, flirting with boys and hanging out with writing groups of her fellow refugees.

When the chorus comes, it’s a giant dance fest, with everyone joining in. There’s a hint of another old video - at one stage Britney wears a red bodysuit. But unlike the flared version in “Oops… I Did It Again”, this one is much tighter and has an external underwear design in crystals.

The sprinklers go off in this underground lair, confirming the Britney video rule that people look better when they’re wet. The video ends with Britney emerging meerkat-like from a manhole, seeing the sun shining. Aw, see, it wasn’t the end of the world; it was just a little rain.

Britney Spears

32. Hold It Against Me
The first video off Britney’s seventh studio album is set on Earth, 2011. A giant flaming asteroid comes hurtling towards the planet, but instead of destroying the world, it brings some colourful lights.
Oblivious to this - or perhaps super powered because of it - Britney is in a studio, getting reading for a photoshoot. Her perfume range makes yet another cameo, because obviously fragrance is important in a photoshoot.
"Hold It Against Me" is crawling with product placement, including the dating site that also appeared in Lady Gaga’s "Telephone" video. Every close-up of a strategically used product is a little bump in the flow of the video.
It is a somewhat Gaga-inspired video, with both the costumes and the outrageous scenario. This could partly be due to the videos sharing director Jonas Akerlund, but yet all the elements of “Hold It Against Me” have been in previous Britney videos, just not in such a concentration.
Trapped by her past, Britney is encircled by a wall of televisions, all playing her old music videos, while she wears a giant, multi-storey dress. What would sweet Britney of “Sometimes” say if she could see her future self?
Suddenly Britney’s freaky costume gets even freakier, with colourful paints spurting out of tubing at her fingertips. She jizzes the paint everywhere, giving the visions of past Britney a good soaking. While this is going on, an alternate Britney battles another Britney.
The drama resolves itself, finishing with a good old fashioned formation dance with a nice big glitter bomb thrown in for good measure. A rainbow-coloured question mark appears on a staticy background. I don’t know, Britney. You tell me.

32. Hold It Against Me

The first video off Britney’s seventh studio album is set on Earth, 2011. A giant flaming asteroid comes hurtling towards the planet, but instead of destroying the world, it brings some colourful lights.

Oblivious to this - or perhaps super powered because of it - Britney is in a studio, getting reading for a photoshoot. Her perfume range makes yet another cameo, because obviously fragrance is important in a photoshoot.

"Hold It Against Me" is crawling with product placement, including the dating site that also appeared in Lady Gaga’s "Telephone" video. Every close-up of a strategically used product is a little bump in the flow of the video.

It is a somewhat Gaga-inspired video, with both the costumes and the outrageous scenario. This could partly be due to the videos sharing director Jonas Akerlund, but yet all the elements of “Hold It Against Me” have been in previous Britney videos, just not in such a concentration.

Trapped by her past, Britney is encircled by a wall of televisions, all playing her old music videos, while she wears a giant, multi-storey dress. What would sweet Britney of “Sometimes” say if she could see her future self?

Suddenly Britney’s freaky costume gets even freakier, with colourful paints spurting out of tubing at her fingertips. She jizzes the paint everywhere, giving the visions of past Britney a good soaking. While this is going on, an alternate Britney battles another Britney.

The drama resolves itself, finishing with a good old fashioned formation dance with a nice big glitter bomb thrown in for good measure. A rainbow-coloured question mark appears on a staticy background. I don’t know, Britney. You tell me.

Britney Spears

31. 3 (2009)
More perfume, this time Britney administers only four squirts. That’s far more sensible.
The video for “3” is the most minimal that Britney’s done. Filmed in studio, it mostly involves Britney dancing with some dark-haired female dancers or bald-headed male dancers. It’s an ode to threesomes, but the men and women are never with Britney at the same time. Interesting.
The video very heavy on dancing, and with the minimal set, it’s up to Britney to really sell the video, which she does. She puts her years of pop experience to work, giving the camera plenty of love, and dancing like a pro. There’s a great moment at the end of the middle eight where she gives a tiny smirk, as if she’s well aware of the craziness of the song and, you know, she doesn’t actually want to have threesomes all the time. Just some of the times.
I learned something from this song. The chorus goes “One, two, three. Peter, Paul and Mary”, and apparently that folk duo is slang for a threesome. “If I Had a Hammer” will never sound the same again.

31. 3 (2009)

More perfume, this time Britney administers only four squirts. That’s far more sensible.

The video for “3” is the most minimal that Britney’s done. Filmed in studio, it mostly involves Britney dancing with some dark-haired female dancers or bald-headed male dancers. It’s an ode to threesomes, but the men and women are never with Britney at the same time. Interesting.

The video very heavy on dancing, and with the minimal set, it’s up to Britney to really sell the video, which she does. She puts her years of pop experience to work, giving the camera plenty of love, and dancing like a pro. There’s a great moment at the end of the middle eight where she gives a tiny smirk, as if she’s well aware of the craziness of the song and, you know, she doesn’t actually want to have threesomes all the time. Just some of the times.

I learned something from this song. The chorus goes “One, two, three. Peter, Paul and Mary”, and apparently that folk duo is slang for a threesome. “If I Had a Hammer” will never sound the same again.

britney spears

30. Radar (2009)
"Radar" was originally on "Blackout", but was added a a bonus track on "Circus" because it deserved to be released as a single. The song seems like it should involve some scorching nightclub action, but the video goes in an entirely different direction: a polo match.
The video is set in a countryside pony palace, where Britney’s boyfriend Paul is partaking in some polo. Paul seems nice enough, but as they’re walking through the stables, Britney catches sight of a shaggy-haired polo player. He’s on her radar.
She checks out shaggy guy as he’s playing polo, and gives Paul an awesome disgust face as he attempts to placate her with a diamond necklace.
Watching the game, Britney shoots seductive glances at the shaggy guy, which angers Paul. Paul’s team wins, and as he celebrates with the massive trophy, he notices Britney is missing. Of course, she’s off with shaggy guy. Paul goes looking for them and finds his necklace gift discarded on the floor. He doubles over with rage.
Meanwhile, Britney and shaggy guy have driven away, walking across a field into the sunset. At last - Britney gets a proper happy ending with the guy.
P.S. Happy 30th birthday, Brit!

30. Radar (2009)

"Radar" was originally on "Blackout", but was added a a bonus track on "Circus" because it deserved to be released as a single. The song seems like it should involve some scorching nightclub action, but the video goes in an entirely different direction: a polo match.

The video is set in a countryside pony palace, where Britney’s boyfriend Paul is partaking in some polo. Paul seems nice enough, but as they’re walking through the stables, Britney catches sight of a shaggy-haired polo player. He’s on her radar.

She checks out shaggy guy as he’s playing polo, and gives Paul an awesome disgust face as he attempts to placate her with a diamond necklace.

Watching the game, Britney shoots seductive glances at the shaggy guy, which angers Paul. Paul’s team wins, and as he celebrates with the massive trophy, he notices Britney is missing. Of course, she’s off with shaggy guy. Paul goes looking for them and finds his necklace gift discarded on the floor. He doubles over with rage.

Meanwhile, Britney and shaggy guy have driven away, walking across a field into the sunset. At last - Britney gets a proper happy ending with the guy.

P.S. Happy 30th birthday, Brit!

britney spears

29. If U Seek Amy (2009)
The video starts with a prim news anchor carefully saying the song title, while an on-screen graphic shouts “BRITNEY SPEARS SONG LYRICS SPELL OUT OBSCENITY IN DISGUISE. She might be feigning ignorance, but you know what it means, right?
It’s the morning after what appears to have been a night of extreme debauchery. Britney’s freaky friends are pulling on their clothes, or still passed out in bed from the night before. Britney awakes and something’s on her mind - where is Amy?
Britney has a dance with some boys, then has a dance with some girls as the boys watch with lust in their eyes. This is a very bisexual song. Suddenly party girl Britney transforms into a perfect 1950s housewife, albeit one with dirty dark roots. Oh, symbolism!
Housewife Britney makes her way through the house, surrounded by her freaky friends, goes into the kitchen and picks up an apple pie. Taking it outside, she’s joined by a handsome husband and two cute kids, and they pose at their front gate for a swarm of paparazzi.
Another clip of the news anchor closes the video, saying, “It doesn’t make any sense, does it?”
The video seems like Britney’s response to people who are angry that she isn’t still a sweet 17-year-old. Hey guys, sometimes she’s a bit freaky. We all like to get up to our own business at home.

29. If U Seek Amy (2009)

The video starts with a prim news anchor carefully saying the song title, while an on-screen graphic shouts “BRITNEY SPEARS SONG LYRICS SPELL OUT OBSCENITY IN DISGUISE. She might be feigning ignorance, but you know what it means, right?

It’s the morning after what appears to have been a night of extreme debauchery. Britney’s freaky friends are pulling on their clothes, or still passed out in bed from the night before. Britney awakes and something’s on her mind - where is Amy?

Britney has a dance with some boys, then has a dance with some girls as the boys watch with lust in their eyes. This is a very bisexual song. Suddenly party girl Britney transforms into a perfect 1950s housewife, albeit one with dirty dark roots. Oh, symbolism!

Housewife Britney makes her way through the house, surrounded by her freaky friends, goes into the kitchen and picks up an apple pie. Taking it outside, she’s joined by a handsome husband and two cute kids, and they pose at their front gate for a swarm of paparazzi.

Another clip of the news anchor closes the video, saying, “It doesn’t make any sense, does it?”

The video seems like Britney’s response to people who are angry that she isn’t still a sweet 17-year-old. Hey guys, sometimes she’s a bit freaky. We all like to get up to our own business at home.

britney spears

28. Circus (2008)
There’s only two types of people in the world:the ones that entertain and the ones that observe.
Britney begins this video by dowsing herself with 10 squirts of her Circus perfume. This might seem excessive, but I recently tried some in Farmers and I was surprised at how mild the fragrance is (unlike Fantasy, which is really full on). Circus is actually a very pleasant fragrance, if you’re wondering what to get me for my birthday and/or Christmas.
The song compares the dancefloor to a circus, so the video takes this and runs with it, stuffing the video full of circus performers, whips, freak shows and even some lions and an elephant.
Directed by Francis Lawrence, the video does amazing things with light, with either the bright glare of the spotlight or the alluring glow of footlights bringing atmosphere.
"Circus", a song essentially about being the centre of attention, is a great big glorious extravaganza of exhibitionism. The put-on-a-show kind of girl does what she does best.

28. Circus (2008)

There’s only two types of people in the world:
the ones that entertain and the ones that observe.

Britney begins this video by dowsing herself with 10 squirts of her Circus perfume. This might seem excessive, but I recently tried some in Farmers and I was surprised at how mild the fragrance is (unlike Fantasy, which is really full on). Circus is actually a very pleasant fragrance, if you’re wondering what to get me for my birthday and/or Christmas.

The song compares the dancefloor to a circus, so the video takes this and runs with it, stuffing the video full of circus performers, whips, freak shows and even some lions and an elephant.

Directed by Francis Lawrence, the video does amazing things with light, with either the bright glare of the spotlight or the alluring glow of footlights bringing atmosphere.

"Circus", a song essentially about being the centre of attention, is a great big glorious extravaganza of exhibitionism. The put-on-a-show kind of girl does what she does best.

britney spears

27. Womanizer (2008)
Thank God this song exists. “Womanizer” is brilliant. The video, by “Toxic” director Joseph Kahn, has a similar playfulness and cartoony sense of humour to “Toxic”, and again Britney’s breaking out the different wigs and playing wicked characters.
The video starts with Narrator Britney. She’s naked, glistening with sweat as she lies in a steamy hot sauna. It’s obvious that she’s been working out, and this dramatic opening shot shows that bloated Britney is a thing of the past.
Over in a kitchen, Britney plays a housewife, serving up a square fried egg to her womanising man. He pulls out his smartphone and notes that at 10.15am he has a “Product Placement Meeting”. I see what you did there.
Britney plays three different personas: the office worker, the waitress and the chauffeur. Each appear in places where the guy is going out his business, they dance up a storm and work their man-izing seductive moves on him. Because he is a womanizer, the flirts right back.
Back home, the three women are waiting for Mr Man, but with a twirl they merge into one: Britney. Britney and/or the three women push him around a bit, before  he vanishes. And with a smile, Britney makes her bed.
Yet again, Britney doesn’t get the guy. But she has so much fun toying with him, and she’s most definitely not the victim. Welcome back, cool Britney.

27. Womanizer (2008)

Thank God this song exists. “Womanizer” is brilliant. The video, by “Toxic” director Joseph Kahn, has a similar playfulness and cartoony sense of humour to “Toxic”, and again Britney’s breaking out the different wigs and playing wicked characters.

The video starts with Narrator Britney. She’s naked, glistening with sweat as she lies in a steamy hot sauna. It’s obvious that she’s been working out, and this dramatic opening shot shows that bloated Britney is a thing of the past.

Over in a kitchen, Britney plays a housewife, serving up a square fried egg to her womanising man. He pulls out his smartphone and notes that at 10.15am he has a “Product Placement Meeting”. I see what you did there.

Britney plays three different personas: the office worker, the waitress and the chauffeur. Each appear in places where the guy is going out his business, they dance up a storm and work their man-izing seductive moves on him. Because he is a womanizer, the flirts right back.

Back home, the three women are waiting for Mr Man, but with a twirl they merge into one: Britney. Britney and/or the three women push him around a bit, before  he vanishes. And with a smile, Britney makes her bed.

Yet again, Britney doesn’t get the guy. But she has so much fun toying with him, and she’s most definitely not the victim. Welcome back, cool Britney.

britney spears

26. Break the Ice (2008)
Does maybe Britney need a bit of a lie-down, perhaps? Ok, let’s do an anime video. 
The animated Britney in “Break the Ice” is reportedly based on the character she plays in “Toxic”. She’s on a mission, breaking into a research facility and battling henchmen before she…
Actually, you know what? I couldn’t follow the plot and I can’t be bothered paraphrasing the Wikipedia summary. I guess I’m not used to the grammar of anime. I don’t know what to focus on and I can’t follow the action.
"Break the Ice" was the final single off "Blackout". It’s a slightly disappointing end to the album’s three videos, but after the disastrous "Gimme More" video, it’s encouraging that the subsequent videos improved in quality.
"Break the Ice" ends with an explosion and the vague threat "To be continued". Ok, I want videos with Britney in them. I want happy, healthy Britney dancing and doing other fun stuff.

26. Break the Ice (2008)

Does maybe Britney need a bit of a lie-down, perhaps? Ok, let’s do an anime video. 

The animated Britney in “Break the Ice” is reportedly based on the character she plays in “Toxic”. She’s on a mission, breaking into a research facility and battling henchmen before she…

Actually, you know what? I couldn’t follow the plot and I can’t be bothered paraphrasing the Wikipedia summary. I guess I’m not used to the grammar of anime. I don’t know what to focus on and I can’t follow the action.

"Break the Ice" was the final single off "Blackout". It’s a slightly disappointing end to the album’s three videos, but after the disastrous "Gimme More" video, it’s encouraging that the subsequent videos improved in quality.

"Break the Ice" ends with an explosion and the vague threat "To be continued". Ok, I want videos with Britney in them. I want happy, healthy Britney dancing and doing other fun stuff.

britney spears