Justin Timberlake ruined the Super Bowl halftime show. And I’m not just referring to the infamous Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show – that being the infamous “wardrobe malfunction” incident. That half-second of “indecent exposure” has resulted in a slew of kinda bland halftime shows that pander to the baby boomer generation and hardly reflect the current musical landscape.
Just take a look at this year’s halftime show. There was a band dressed like The Who performing songs about being young and restless as the members themselves looked as if they needed some sort of respirator to complete each section of the lengthy medley. It was a great reflection of our times. Here’s a band that epitomizes the status of the baby boomer generation in our society: An old, white male band clinging on to the past for dear life on the world’s stage while simultaneously withholding the voices of other generations, races and classes from expressing themselves by taking up a massive stage.
That stage was pretty impressive though.
Why didn’t Jay-Z perform the halftime show? He did technically kick-off the game with a rendition of “Run This Town” backed up by an orchestra. And the guy is fairly accepted in society these days: He did perform at (one of the) inaugural ball(s). And he doesn’t carry the kind of bad rap that Pete Townshend does. Though Jay-Z hoisting the Lombardi trophy at the end of the song was a bit much…
And then there was the ’85 Chicago Bears redoing the “Super Bowl Shuffle” for Boost Mobile:
Grizzly Bear’s “Two Weeks” prominently featured in a Volkswagen commercial (along with Tracy Morgan and Stevie Wonder) that was one of the rare non-CBS-promo ads, The Arcade Fire’s “Wake Up” played on three spots for the NFL (and once during a pause in the game), T-Pain for Bud Light and some strange semi-rap by Charles Barkley for Taco Bell (too bad it wasn’t Das Racist’s “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell”) made for a pretty odd mix of music-related events during this year’s Super Bowl.
Thank goodness for the actual game and fantastic outcome to this year’s Super Bowl. Congrats to the Saints!