Access Hollywood Week In Review

As we take a look back at the week that was in Hollywood news, we focus on three little letters: VMAs. Ok, so maybe it’s four letters if you count the “s.” Either way, Las Vegas became the epicenter for Hollywood headlines over the past seven days, as evident in the Access Hollywood Week In Review…

IT’S BRITNEY BI**H-- Don’t call it a comeback y’all. After weeks of will she/won’t she, Britney Spears finally took the stage at the Palms Hotel and Casino to open the 2007 MTV VMAs. And while a record number tuned in to the awards show to witness the first step in Brit’s career comeback, what they witnessed was more like a catastrophe. Her bumbling, fumbling, poorly lip-synched performance of her single, “Gimme More,” was met with a less-than-stellar reviews.

Notably absent from the performance was illusionist Criss Angel, who had been in works to take the stage with Brit. A source close to the “Mindfreak” magician told Access that Angel’s manager had decided to opt out of the performance “when it became increasingly unlikely that Britney would take the time to rehearse or take the magic or illusionist portion of her performance seriously.”

While Britney’s VMA performance took a beating from fans and critics, advance reviews of five unfinished tracks from her new album weren’t all bad. Additionally, Britney was offered some career help this week from an unlikely source — the “American Idol” judges.

During a press conference to promote the upcoming season of the hit reality show, Simon Cowell said they would like to “collectively manage” the pop star. His first step to getting her back on track?

“Buy her some underwear,” Cowell panned.

FIGHT NIGHT --Just when it seemed no one could steal the VMA spotlight from Brit, enter Kid Rock, Tommy Lee and one glancing blow.

As Alicia Keys took the stage, a scuffle between Kid Rock and Tommy Lee erupted on the audience floor, which led to both former husbands of Pamela Anderson being forced to exit the show. Kid Rock was cited for misdemeanor battery following the altercation, but was not taken into police custody.

In a posting on his Web site Tuesday, Tommy Lee alleged that “Kid Pebble” had started the fight with a punch to his face, and that he was dragged out by security before he could retaliate.

On Thursday, Kid Rock addressed the incident in an interview with KROQ.

“It was unavoidable. This has been a lot of years of very disrespectful things,” the rap-rocker said.

He alleged that Lee had sent him “horrendous” email messages during Kid’s divorce from Anderson, but denied the incident at the VMAs had anything to do with her (as many had speculated). “The best thing I did was file for that divorce,” he remarked, referring to his marriage with Pam as a “circus.”

GO WEST YOUNG MAN -- Not to be outdone, Kanye West once again found a way to turn the spotlight on himself, as he often does.

First, he bashed MTV’s decision to open the VMAs with Britney, crying the pop princess “hadn’t had a hit record in years.” Then after being shut out in all five categories for which he was nominated, Kanye vowed never to return to the MTV stage.

“That’s two years in a row, man … give a black man a chance,” said West, stomping around his entourage and directing his comments at a reporter. “I’m trying hard man, I have the … No. 1 record, man.”

But he wasn’t finished there, as he continued to take shots at the network claiming MTV “exploited” Britney for their own gain even though “they knew that [she] wasn’t ready.”

However, MTV wasn’t the only one to draw fire from West, as he also took aim at fellow rap titan 50 Cent, as they two dropped their new albums on the same day.

Long before the release date, the two took turns taking shots at each other over who would rule the charts, with Fiddy even going as far as to claim he’d retire as a solo artist if Kanye outsold him in the first week.

It appears we’ll soon see if he’s a man of his word, as early returns suggest Kanye is well on pace to grab the top spot on the charts.

Official numbers will be released on Wednesday.

A NEW POINT OF ‘VIEW’-- A week after Whoopi Goldberg joined the ladies of “The View,” the morning gab fest made room for one more this week as Sherri Shepherd officially joined the show.

After nearly two dozen guest host appearances, the former “Less Than Perfect” star finally pulled up her seat as the fifth member of the morning panel.

And the girls didn’t take long to make Sherri feel right at home with a good ol’ fashioned “View” catfight.

On Thursday, Barbara Walters and Elizabeth Hasselbeck squared off in a heated debate over polygamy, the Mormon religion… and Monica Lewinsky.

And apparently former “View” co-host Meredith Vieira misses this sort of excitement, as she announced she will be making her first return to the show since leaving for “Today” in June 2006.

Actually, her guest appearance on October 8 will be to promote the soon-to-be-released “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” DVD home game.

WHERE HAVE ALL THE BAD GIRLS GONE?-- For the first time in who knows how long, Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie and Lindsay Lohan failed to make the headlines.

Just that alone deserves to be mentioned.

Keep up the good work girls!

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