What happened
The mother of troubled British soul singer Amy Winehouse released an open letter in the British tabloid News of the World telling her daughter, “Early fame has overwhelmed you.” Janis Winehouse told her daughter—who has canceled her tour as she spiraled out of control over her husband’s incarceration—that she was “terrified” by last week's photos showing her wandering the streets of London on a freezing morning, wearing only jeans and a red bra. “All I wanted to do was rush into those pictures and wrap you up in a big, warm blanket," Janis Winehouse wrote.

What the commentators said
“We’re with you, Mrs. Winehouse,” said Jefferson Reid in E! Online’s The Hum blog. “Amy, make like ET and phone home.” This “impassioned plea” was just what the “headstrong” superstar needed to hear.

“A mother can only take so much,” said the New York Post’s Page Six gossip column. Winehouse has been a wreck since her husband, Blake Fielder-Civil, went to jail for allegedly trying to fix his assault trial. She received a late-night visit from rocker Pete Doherty—known for his drug problems—and “mumbled incoherently” the morning she was spotted walking the streets in her undies.

“Desperate times call for desperate measures,” said Diana Barbarich in EntertainmentWise.com. It must have been hard for Mrs. Winehouse to watch her 24-year-old daughter’s “bizarre array of nocturnal activities.” The two have talked, but the open letter may have been just the bombshell to make a difference.

You have to be pretty hard-hearted not to be wiping away a tear about now, said the Australian version of the blog Defamer. Not that a plea from Mom is likely to lure Amy home for “a blankie and some chicken soup.”