It was the worst-kept secret of Sunday's 2013 Video Music Awards: Justin Timberlake reunited with his boy band brethren 'N Sync.
Ahead of the annual spectacle that celebrates irreverence and the occasional music video, it was reported that Timberlake would rejoin the band that launched him into superstardom.
And on Sunday he did.
As part of his career-spanning performance to mark his Michael Jackson Vanguard Award win, Timberlake was joined by Joey Fatone, Lance Bass, Chris Kirkpatrick and JC Chasez.
First, Timberlake moved through a breadth of his solo hits, including "SexyBack," "Senorita," "Cry Me a River" and “Like I Love You,” and new tunes from his smash comeback album, “The 20/20 Experience.”
But it was the reunion of 'N Sync during the 15-minute retrospective that fans were anticipating. However, the moment was brief. Rising from the stage amid a foggy silhouette, the group -- some of its members looking fuller in the waistlines than others -- took us back to the glory days when its pop smashes such as "Girlfriend" and "Bye Bye Bye," both of which got a quick run-through, allowed 'NSync to win the race of the late '90s pop boy band craze that carried into the millennium.
"I don't deserve the award, but I'm not going to give it back," Timberlake said during his acceptance speech before thanking his former bandmates.
"Half of the Moonmen I've ever won, I won with those four guys. So above all else, I'm going to share this -- we can keep it at my house -- but I'm going to share this award with them."
Because MTV isn't cool enough to have uploaded video of the performance yet, relieve some of 'NSync's glory days on the VMA stage below:Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun