Joseph Brannigan Lynch
December 01, 2009 AT 11:34 PM EST

Pop icon-in-the-making Adam Lambert appeared on The Ellen Degeneres Show today and gave offended audiences the closest thing yet to an apology for his American Music Awards performance over a week ago. The glimmery one told Ellen he hardly thought what he did—kissing his male keyboardist and simulating fellatio with dancers—was immoral, but he did allow that he “maybe went a little bit too far.”

“I forgot that this was the first time people were seeing me [performing] on TV again after Idol, and I didn’t really think about that as objectively as I might have wanted to,” he confessed with comfortable conviction. “Maybe that wasn’t the best first impression to make again… or the first second impression.”

According to the Idol runner-up, his own father even suggested a mea culpa, but Lambert felt the brouhaha was more about “taste” than “obscenity.” As he and Ellen discussed, late-night network television is hardly chaste. Without ever using the divisive word “hypocrisy,” Ad-Rock pointed out that people are used to seeing the “safe, friendly” gay pal on TV, not a libidinous, openly homosexual rock star prowling the stage like a disco wildcat.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong when Britney does it—as Glamberino pointed out in an interview with our own Michael Slezak, The Early Show proved this when they blurred footage of his kiss and then proceeded to air uncensored footage of Madonna smooching on Britney. Double standard? Duh.

Adam, however, isn’t interested in Lamb(ert)asting America for its shifting expectations of gay culture. He acknowledged his antics were an affront to some, but assured viewers he “did not intend to disrespect” anyone with his stage show.

Let’s be clear, though—this was no slavish apology (Aaron Hicklin, rejoice!). Nor was it one of those meaningless “let me explain” interviews senators have mastered. His demeanor was more akin to one of those adorable “Oops! Did I do that?” moments when you walk in on your cat standing next to a broken vase.

And true to his savvy, publicity-minded sixth sense, Lambert toned down his recent glam-inatrix wardrobe in favor of a retro ’70s look for the occasion. Not to mention the wisdom in giving his almost-apology on a gay-friendly show like Ellen’s.

What do you think? Is all of this much ado about nothing, or should Lambert be held up for further castigation? Or should we just take it with a grain of glitter, because really, it’s all just for our entertainment?

(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)

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