Where a discussion about the Backstreet Boys goes, one about (former) competitor *NSYNC must follow. As another Orlando-based vocal group created two years after the Backstreet Boys, they quickly became BSB’s number one rival in the hearts of fangirls (and boys!) everywhere. Unlike the Backstreet Boys, they sadly did not stand the test of time, breaking up in 2002 after the release and promotion of their third album Celebrity. Never fear: they left us with a bunch of videos to remember and judge them by. Here’s our ranking of the American *NSYNC videos.
The video has the guys dancing on fairly unstable cars and Justin winning a drag race. You know what it doesn’t have? NELLY. You don’t do something without Nelly if he can be involved. It’s just not right.
This is one of *NSYNC’s most iconic videos, and definitely their most offensive. The padded cells, straightjackets, and portrayal of the mentally ill make for one horrifically insensitive video, all in the name of being dramatic over a breakup. The only two upsides to this video are the comfortable-looking silk pajamas they wear and the inclusion of Amber from Clueless.
This one features the boys performing in a very fake looking forest–like, I’d compare it to the Rainforest Cafe, but I don’t want to insult the restaurant–wearing turtleneck sweaters and ugly pants. The performance is interspersed with a bunch of random people doing random things, with no perceivable thread.
A frame narrative that opens and closes on people in the ‘20s doing the Charleston and some…other, more anachronistic dances. As my sister said, “That’s a lot of booty dancing for the ‘20s.” Inside the frame, Justin angsts his way through a breakup. The best parts are when all of the guys join him and intensely stare into the camera while they sing. Bros supporting bros: here for it.
The guys perform at a basketball game, then play the game. Surprisingly boring for an early *NSYNC video.