In her first post-incident television interview, Rihanna saidshe was "embarrassed" that she chose to be in a relationship with someone like Chris,and added that continuing the association sent the wrong message to the girlswho looked up to her.
Rihanna's disposition was somber. She appeared to be on theverge of crying in a few instances.
Chris, however, seemed to be in a more lighthearted mood inthe three video clips Yahoo! TV received from MTV.
When you think backto that night, what are your thoughts?
It's hard hearing sincerity in Chris' response because thereis a prominent smirk on his face. He does admit to thinking, "Why did ithappen?" and "What was I thinking?" But I feel like he's describing a funny,embarrassing moment, not a brutal beating that resulted in him gettingsentenced to five years of probation and an order to stay away from his victim.He quickly changes the focus to getting past the ordeal.
What do you thinkyour public perception is?
There is no doubt that Chris loves his fans that havesupported him throughout the backlash. I would expect him to smile and be happywhen speaking about them. But I'm having trouble reading his expression whentalking about the non-supporters. He seemed surprised that there are somepeople who don't want to see him do anything and others who want to see him injail.
Maybe what he is displaying is gallows humor? Maybe he's sotroubled by everything that has transpired that he laughs instead of cries?Many comedians subscribe to this outlook on life.
But I'm not convinced. I'm feeling as though he thinks thateveryone should get over it, and accept that he just made a mistake for whichhe has apologized. By the way, he's young and according to his and his mother'saccounts conveyed on the September Larry King interview, he has never beeninvolved in anything like this before.
He needs to put his energy into making it clear that he isremorseful and grateful that he is not in jail.
What are some of theworse things someone has said to you in public?
This is the worst of the three clips. Chris looks as thoughhe is enjoying rattling off the list of insults passerby have thrown athim-"woman beater," "you suck," "I hate you," "you're stupid," "oh, don't gettoo close, he might punch you in the face." He dismisses the name calling as"ignorant," implying that the comments could not be further from the truth. HisColgate smile couldn't be bigger.
I can somewhat relate to this. Whenever I have been falselyaccused of something, I found it funny because the accusation was so out ofcharacter. But Chris isn't falsely accused. I don't think Chris is a horribleperson because of this serious mistake. I do think that he can move past it.But he needs to understand that the verbal attacks and the negative publicperception he is experiencing are not baseless. If he wants to regain his cleancut image, he is going to have to earn it back.
There are people who have done less who have losteverything-their families, freedom, and careers. Chris did lose his girlfriendand tarnish his image, but his album is still coming. Actually, the releasedate for "Graffiti" is December 8, a week earlier than originally scheduled.He's kicking off his tour. His throngs of female fans are still in his corner.
Chris' world is not over. He is not doing too bad. Maybethat's in the back of his head and behind his smile.