Image Credit: Lou Rocco/ABC Merry New Year! Dick Clark, Ryan Seacrest, Jenny McCarthy, and a reported 1 million revelers welcomed 2011 from Times Square in New York City last night. ABC's live broadcast of Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve boasted a classic boy-band bash, with the well-preserved Backstreet Boys and the New Kids on the Block collaborating for a medley of their greatest hits, but it was wild-child Ke$ha who stole the show. Performing her hit song, "Tik Tok," she literally rode Santa Claus, whacked what appeared to be an Easter Bunny pinata, and urged the crowd to "make 2011 our bitch!" Later, on the ABC stage with Seacrest and the boy-band headliners, Ke$ha responded to Seacrest's question about resolutions with a quick, "Not become a d—–bag." Nice. (I think that's actually in the third verse of "Auld Lang Syne.")

Ke$ha's irreverence was refreshing. Poor Jenny McCarthy was saddled with crowd-duty, and it was actually impressive hearing her sell lines like, "I am so excited to be down here," and "I wish I could wake up every morning to this." Sure you do, Jenny. Which made Seacrest's under-his-breath line so perfect at the end of the evening, as McCarthy prepared to sign-off: "She wants a drink so badly."

Other highlights — intentional and unintentional — of Dick Clark's annual shindig included:

— Jennifer Hudson stalking television viewers with every Weight Watcher commercial before finally belting out a killer rendition of "Feeling Good."

— Mayor Mike Bloomberg kicking it old-school, urging the partying kids to "Be there or be square." Holla.

— Dick Clark snogging his wife after the ball dropped.

— McCarthy teasing a uniformed Marine — from New York, no less — that they might kiss at midnight, only to end up smooching what appeared to be her new Boston boyfriend instead.

Happy New Years, folks. (Thank you for correcting my English, Clarence Beeks.) Have a great 2011, and let Ke$ha's high-minded goal rub off a little on all of us.

What did you think of the show? And what year do we have to wait for until cheap-glasses manufacturers will finally give up trying to shoehorn the new year's digits on to a set of novelty frames?

More New Year's Eve TV:

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