Sexy & Sweet: Is the Old Britney Back?

Britney Spears is working to turn her past wrongs into rights.

After her glazed-over, half-hearted performance at last year's MTV Video Music Awards, many doubted she would ever set foot on that stage again. But according to an MTV spokesperson, Spears is in talks to make an appearance at the Sept. 7 ceremony, and she's already starring in promos for the show.

In one of the two spots, Spears, clad in a curve-hugging black dress, flirts shamelessly with VMA host Russell Brand, who teases her about remembering his name as an elephant paces in the background. She seems sexy and confident, ready to laugh off last year's failures and shine in the spotlight again.

And in latest issue of OK! magazine, Spears seems as if she's ready to reclaim her role as a mom as well. She poses on the cover looking like a modern-day Southern belle, a dapper Sean Preston and Jayden James by her side. In her first interview in two years, she tells the magazine she'd "rather not" have her sons follow in her famous footsteps, saying, "I'd just as soon they have a more normal childhood."

It's a far cry from her last attempt to talk to and pose for the magazine. At a July 2007 photo shoot, Spears reportedly let her dog soil a $6,700 Zac Posen gown and walked off the set with thousands of dollars of clothes and accessories.

With a new album in the works and her child custody case closed, a killer VMA performance could turn Spears' uptick in behavior into a bonafide comeback. And for MTV, it would be a ratings coup: Last year's VMA's was up 23 percent over the 2006 show.

So hit it, Britney, one more time -- if you get it right, it's an all-around win.

Sheila Marikar

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