Lana Del Rey just pulled off the unthinkable: a seemingly well-received performance on national TV. Yesterday, the Internet sensation who everyone (including Brian Williams) pretends to hate showed up on The Late Show with David Letterman and launched into “Video Games,” the keynote song of her endlessly derided performance last month on Saturday Night Live.
With nowhere to go but up this time, the responses were more favorable to her low-key, one-song set. “She comes off as understandably self-conscious in her singing, but delivers a much more controlled and dramatic performance than on SNL,” wrote Rolling Stone‘s Matthew Perpetua. She “inject[ed] the sort of nuances indie music fans were craving when she first emerged as the genre’s great hope,” gushed The Hollywood Reporter.
Even Gawker, which published Brian Williams’ harsh criticism of the singer, conceded of the clip: “Is this the part where we all decide we love her?” Maybe, maybe not. She still seems to inhabit the divisive guilty pleasure realm. But at least she showed she can bounce back from backlash pretty quickly.