No musician owned pop music quite like Britney Spears at the turn of the century. After graduating from Mississippi tween queen to full-fledged American superstar, her fame exploded at a time when tabloids circled celebrities like prey. 30 to 45 predatory paparazzi would follow Britney’s every move during 12 to 14 hour shifts, eager to document the collapse of her marriage and social circle. As her public image crumbled, it’s no wonder Britney ended 2007 with a bald head and a “blackout.” The conservatorship that came next, however, surprised everyone—even Britney herself.
This episode contains themes that may be disturbing to some listeners, including domestic violence and suicide. If you're thinking about suicide, or are worried about a friend or loved one, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.