A year ago industry watchers were confidently predicting the demise of Britney Spears as a pop princess.
The 26-year-old was roundly criticised after her shambolic appearance at the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards.
The star shuffled her way through a poor rendition of Gimme More and made no attempt to hide the fact she was miming.
At the time, celebrity gossip blogger Perez Hilton said the performance had been "painful" and "embarrassing".
Kelefa Sanneh from The New York Times said: "She tottered around the stage, dancing tentatively and doing nothing that sounded or looked like real live singing."
A year later, Spears' returned to the same awards show.
Following what has generally agreed to have been a faultless performance, many industry experts are forecasting the singer is finally back.