Pink, the new Madonna? Doesn't seem possible -- certainly didn't in 2000, when "There U Go" introduced Philadelphia homegirl Alecia Moore as the latest in a long line of bad girls gone badder. Still, there was something "Like a Virgin"-ish to that cover of "Lady Marmalade," wasn't there? A certain sass, a willingness to toy with passive-aggressive sexuality, a neither-here-nor-there approach to genre. Maybe Missundaztood, Pink's latest, is a deeper listen than its first single, the crack-cocaine-immediate "Get the Party Started," suggested. It's backed up by the current single, "Don't Let Me Get Me," a bizarre pop-rock number with wimpy guitar strumming, gigantic bass, and a lyric about not fitting in that's oddly refreshing when it comes on the radio.
But Pink likes grime -- "My socks are never clean," she boasts -- and she's hung up on Britney Spears, just trying to find a place in the world where a crazy girl who wants a sane boyfriend can go a little mad and come home with her self-respect intact. Hard to tell what impact Wednesday's show will have on Pink's unlikely slide into credibility. Either way, it's a crossroads with more to offer than boring ol' Britney's.