Jennifer Lopez at the AMAsWhen you think subcompacts, do you think... glitter and public near-nudity? Maybe not, but that was the association some viewers will be making after watching the glorified Fiat advertisement that doubled as a Jennifer Lopez production number on Sunday night's American Music Awards. Even some of her fellow artists, like John Legend, branded it "shameless."
Lopez opened her number with a chaste, classy gown that soon got stripped away to reveal a flesh-colored body stocking with a few handfuls of glitter strategically glued on. It was like deja vu all over again, as the barely-there outfit brought back memories of Britney Spears' equally revealing outfit on the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards.
But Spears wasn't acting as a commercial spokeswoman back when she did her naughty bit 11 years ago. Lopez has cars to hawk, so she and her dancers performed their entire set in front of a Fiat, which was a little like watching Cirque du Soleil's erotic "O" show in Las Vegas with a Subaru parked incongruously in the middle of the stage.
It wasn't just media observers thinking Lopez crossed a line, but some of her contemporaries. Tweeted a dumbstruck Questlove, of the Roots: "Yo. I know I didn't just see that dumb Fiat. I KNOW I didn't just see that friggin' Fiat."
Legend tweeted back to Questlove: "That had to be the most shameless thing I've ever seen in a performance. I was genuinely shocked."
J.Lo performsSome show watchers praised Lopez for having such a rockin' bod as a 42-year-old mother, including People, which called her appearance "triumphant." Others, though, panned her mid-song move from class to crass. The UK's Daily Mail described it as "raunchy" and "debauched," citing her NSFW rubbing up against rapper Pitbull. The Wall Street Journal described her number as "basically a car ad combined with a strip tease."
"Jennifer Lopez gave what will surely be the most cringe-inducing, embarrassing performance of the night," wrote the Los Angeles Times. "It wasn't that Lopez wasn't really wearing any clothes, as audiences expect that nowadays. Instead, it was Lopez's choice of an accessory, which in this case was a car. When the actual commercial ran not too long after the performance, the only difference was the emphasis on the name of the brand."
Not long after J.Lo did some heavy-duty grinding with Pitbull, the rapper also joined Marc Anthony, onstage. For pretending not to be annoyed by what his duet partner had just been doing with his ex, Anthony may deserve an acting Emmy.