During the summer of 2012, the pop culture-loving world rejoiced when Britney Spears accepted a reported $15 million a year offer to join the new and (supposedly) improved judging panel on The X Factor. The pop princess hadn't done much public speaking since her infamous mid-2000s meltdown, and our voyeuristic minds all wanted to know if she'd sink or swim. Unfortunately, she did neither — she was just sort of there. No trainwreck comments (she was too loopy and rehearsed), but nothing particularly "amazing" (her favorite critique) either. So it really didn't come as a surprise when, over Christmas, rumors began to swirl that Spears had been fired. Today, sources close to the show told TMZ that Spears will quit, and though Fox currently has no comment, we wouldn't be surprised if they were preparing a PR plan as we type.
Unfortunately for Britney, X Factor didn't prove to be the widely hyped comeback she'd hoped for. But she's not alone — many other shows, interviews, and even careers have fallen victim to the deadly curse of high enthusiasm. Below, we count our ten favorite (plus Britney):
Britney Spears' The X Factor comeback:
The final scene of The Sopranos:
A fade to black, after all that? Are you kidding? This will, undoubtedly, go down in history as one of the most hotly contested series finales of all time.
The Lost series finale:
Addendum: Sopranos will go down in history as the most hotly contested series finales of all time, after the Lost finale. After years of endless, torturous questions on a game-changing show that promised way more than it could deliver, Lost told us that it was about the journey the whole time, man — just forget that destination. The answers didn't matter, as long as you still had questions! Also, it wasn't cool that they told us the island wasn't Purgatory for six years then essentially made the island a metaphoric Purgatory.
A Steven Spielberg-exec produced small-screen adventure about an alternate universe with dinosaurs! What could go wrong? Why, clunky dialogue and cheesy plot lines, that's what. Canceled.
Conan O'Brien losing The Tonight Show:
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