I sort of understand why some people – Justin Timberlake fans – are saying that Justin’s Super Bowl Half-Time Show wasn’t *that* bad. It reminded me a bit of Katy Perry’s show a few years ago – it’s startling to realize how many radio hits they’ve had, and then when put in a medley-form, you’re like “oh that’s sort of cool.” The thing about Katy Perry’s show was that she added enough bizarre elements AND she brought on the very living Missy Elliott to dance and sing, which was awesome. Justin did what he does about all things: made it into the Justin Timberlake Show, even when he was trying to “honor” Prince. Think about that – Justin couldn’t think of any living performer with whom he could share the spotlight. So against Prince’s family’s wishes, he brought in a projected image (not exactly a hologram) of Prince and they “sang together.” Here’s the entire performance:
Beyond the Prince thing, what pissed me off was the poor selection of which of JT’s songs to properly “honor” in the medley. Like, “Cry Me a River” is my favorite of JT’s songs and he f–ked it up, and yet he, like, ended on a supposedly uplifting and faithful version of “Mirror,” which IMO is one of his worst songs. But he saved the real end for that stupid Pharrell knockoff, “Can’t Stop the Feeling.” When he launched into “Suit & Tie” I thought for a second the mystery guest was Jay-Z (who has never performed at the Super Bowl) but nope.
As for the Prince “tribute” – apparently, there really was a planned Hologram Prince but it got scrapped at the last minute when the backlash started over the weekend. I’m still not sure that Projected On A Screen Prince was much better. I was thinking about this a lot – would we have felt differently about Projected On A Screen Prince if a different artist had done a tribute? Like, if Eric Clapton had done that, I probably would have appreciated it, because Clapton and Prince respected each other and liked each other. Same with Beyonce. I’m just saying, the “backlash” is very JT-specific, isn’t it? Here’s another criticism: his outfit SUCKED. The bandana says “I’m white again, y’all” but the f–ked up outfit says “I was in a ‘90s boy band.”
Also: Justin Timberlake was there for the birth of the new meme, Selfie Kid.
— Triyoncé (@tribranchvo) February 5, 2018
— Whitley Bailey (@whitleybree) February 5, 2018
— dee. (@harrymoonchild) February 5, 2018
Photos courtesy of Getty.