Ding dong! Ding dong! Gather the people, bring the children! The time has come to expose Justin Timberlake for the opportunist fuck boy that he really is! It’s time he stops using Britney Spears for press and keeps her name out of his mouth once and for all!
It all started in 2002 when Justin Timberlake was trying to get away from that whole boy band ramen noodle hair thing. He had just broken up with the biggest pop star in the world, and boy, was this the PERFECT time for him to go solo.
His first single, “Like I Love You,” wasn’t doing so hot. It peaked at No. 11 on the Billboard Hot 100, hardly a successful lead single for someone who was part of one the most successful musical acts of the early ’00s.
That’s when it appears a new PR strategy came into play. Let’s milk the fuck out of this Britney breakup situation.
Let’s drag her to filth and put her on full blast.
Luckily for Justin, the press was on his side. He played his cards right and Britney was the betrayer…
(This cover ran on Sept. 2, 2002)
…And he was the hero
This cover came out a week after the one calling Britney the betrayer…and the narrative had been set
And he was going to use it to his advantage…
Let’s start with Justin’s infamous Barbara Walters interview where Justin played the sorry man and Britney played “the horrible woman.” In the interview, Justin says, “I promised to her I wouldn’t say specifically why we broke up.”
BUT THEN HE BASICALLY DOES.
He denies that any songs on his album were about her but then plays a song on the piano called “Horrible Woman.” I kid you not, these are the lyrics: “I thought our love was so strong / I guess I was dead wrong / But to look at it positively, hey girl / At least you gave me another song about a horrible woman.”
What kind of Taylor Swift fuckery is this?
AND THEN, like a true class act, when asked if BRITNEY kept her promise to wait to have sex until marriage, Justin says “sure” then bursts out into laughter.
AND THIS WAS JUST THE BEGINNING.
There’s a 10-minute video on YouTube of Justin talking about Britney while promoting his album. Check that out.
Then it gets messier.
On his “Expose Britney for My Own Gain Press Tour,” Justin kept on [hardly] denying the song and video were actually about her. When asked what the music video was about on TRL, Justin said: “The video is not about her. The video is about me.”
On Ellen, he dodges the “Is it about Britney?” question by literally sipping tea like a true stunt queen
It gets worse.
In an interview with Details, Justin randomly bashed Britney’s career decision to do Crossroads. He said: “If she had a clue, she wouldn’t have made [‘Crossroads’].”
Rude and rich coming from the man who would go on to star in The Love Guru.
He tells Sharon Osbourne he just wasn’t impressed with the Britney/Madonna [and Christina Aguilera] 2003 VMA performance: “It’s not that I was upset with it. I just wasn’t impressed.”
And in an interview with Hot 97, he said, “I did it. I’m dirty” when asked if he had “oral intercourse”* with her.
In 2006, FOUR YEARS AFTER THEIR BREAKUP AND HE WAS DATING CAMERON DIAZ, Justin had a new album to promote, so he employed his foolproof strategy: bring up Britney, AGAIN.
In an interview with GQ, Justin said: “I felt like she had a couple of opportunities to just sort of stick up for me, and she didn’t. Which is ﬁne. But at that time, you know, I fought back, and that’s the way I fought back. I used my mind. I came up with a song.”
Then he went back to his bread and butter and released basically a sequel to “Cry Me a River” called “What Goes Around Comes Around.”
In 2008, SIX YEARS AFTER THEY BROKE UP, Justin inducted Madonna into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and used this opportunity to make a Britney jab. He said: “The world has always been full of Madonna wannabes, I might have even dated a couple.”
In 2011, NINE YEARS AFTER THEY BROKE UP, when asked about Britney in an interview with Vanity Fair, INSTEAD OF JUST NOT COMMENTING, he said: “I wish her the best—that goes without saying. We haven’t spoken in nine or 10 years. … We were two birds of the same feather—small-town kids, doing the same thing.”
Then, at a 2013 concert, 11 YEARS AFTER THEIR BREAKUP, he gave some speech where he was like: “Sometimes in life, you think you found the one. Then you find out that she was just a bitch.”
INTERESTING. It should be noted that afterwards, Justin denied that the comment was about Britney. He tweeted: “Ok. I see you. Wouldn’t disrespect ANYONE personally. Ever. #Relax #ItsBritneyBitch I do love that saying though *with accent* #Respect.”
Finally, in 2016, 14 YEARS AFTER THEY BROKE UP, he is STILL putting her on subtle blast.
When VF Italia asked Justin if he needed to be “depressed or tormented” in order to write a good song, he brought up “Cry Me a River.” He said: “Depends. In the past, suffering has helped me compose songs. ‘Cry Me a River’ was written in a time of pain, like everyone knows…”
In conclusion, Justin Timberlake is the original Taylor Swift. He has felt the need to keep bringing up Britney’s name for WAY over a decade. And we didn’t even bring up Nipplegate.