There are two tiers of Super Bowl Halftime shows. The upper echelon includes Michael Jackson, Prince, and Lady Gaga. The
dregs non-upper echelon invokes images Coldplay, Up With People and, now, Maroon 5.
Super Bowl LIII’s show was as milquetoast as the first half of play. As one person on twitter quipped: Maroon 5, Teams 3.
Adam Levine and the boys brought in a stage that could be used for any stadium or arena show, and just started playing. No grand entrance. No shock and/or awe. Just, we’re here and we’re gonna play some of our hits, even the ones that don’t rock the house like a Super Bowl house should be rocked.
People who have paid even cursory attention to pop music over the past 20 years were able to recognize some or most of the songs. But the SBHT show isn’t about toe tapping and singing along. It’s about making you go ‘wow’ and talking about something besides the game tomorrow.
Of course, Adam and the boys weren’t alone. Producers wanted to get acts with Atlanta (or at least Georgia) ties. So they booked in Travis Scott. Outside of the hip-hop community, he’s best known as Kylie Jenner’s baby daddy.
He was okay, given that he was rapping over a track. But Travis along with Maroon 5 mismatched mashup the likes of which need to be avoided at all cost in the future.
The one shining moment of the show was Big Boi. He arrived in a sweet Caddy and clad in a fur coat that was so awesome yet he had to be sweating his baguette off.
But none of that mattered as he got up and brought home a performance that, while not enough to salvage the overall mess, was kick-ass enough to give us something positive to remember.
Let’s not forget the trio of talented singers that opened the festivities.
Atlanta faves Chloe x Halle sang America the Beautiful. Nice, but not knock-your-socks-off memorable. Hopefully they’ll have a better Sunday next week, when they’re up for a couple of Grammys!
And then Miss Gladys Knight was up. The national anthem is no easy song to sing, much less in an acoustically-challenged stadium with 100,000,000 sets of eyeballs on you. But Gladys is a pro and did what pros do: nail it.
Not Whitney-esque nailing it, but pretty good.
The Critic’s Cocktail Recommendation
Bud Light. As we know, the Bud Knight is down & maybe out. So pour out a 40 and have a Good Knight!