Britney Spears' turn as a ditzy love-struck receptionist on How I Met Your Mother is being touted as a breakthrough of sorts by the press: Not only did the show earn its best ratings ever last night, but Britney didn't even melt down!
Yes, for the first time in recent memory, Britney Spears appeared before a camera and didn't display any of the worrisome, tragic behavior (clubbing, British accent, crying, pink wig, no pants) that have become the status quo for her.
Was the How I Met Your Mother guest spot a controlled one to help Spears' image? Yes. Will the public be seeing more of the same? Not likely.
A source close to Britney Spears stated that the HIMYM role was carefully chosen, and if the production and people involved hadn't agreed to be sensitive toward Spears and avoid "trigger" topics, the Spears camp would have backed out.
Britney Spears now (2008) and then (2007) ... a study in contrasts.
"The folks on set knew that they weren't to bring up anything about her music career, for example," the source told MSNBC.
"They weren't supposed to start conversations about her kids. That said, they just wanted her to be treated normally, but obviously this wasn't a normal situation."
Spears spent two days on How I Met Your Mother and the cast said she was great to work with. just don't expect to see her regularly on TV.
"Acting won't be a usual thing for Britney," said the source. "She really needed this, though. For Britney it was like a taste of her old life, but it was a taste that was very carefully planned. This wasn't about her career, it was about her health."
Here's hoping her health continues to improve. Maybe now that Jamie Lynn Spears has gotten engaged, she'll have something else positive to look forward to.