I was not impressed with Justin Timberlake’s halftime performance during this year’s Super Bowl. I am not versed in the language of musical productions, but I found almost the entire performance to be tremendously underwhelming (the Daily Beast has an excellent and scathing takedown). My biggest complaint was the foundation of the entire performance: The sound. It was terrible. I was in a room full of people chatting during the show, so I thought that that’s why I could barely hear JT sing, but it’s just as bad rewatching it in a quiet room alone on YouTube. JT was completely drowned out, and the song choices — many of which make JT’s voice a background element — didn’t exactly help matters.
A lot went wrong with the Halftime Show from the beginning (a new and unfamiliar song performed basically on the concession area) to the very end (JT mugging for that kid’s selfie (also, the kid being more interested in the selfie on his phone than the real-life performer standing next to him was a damning indictment of our modern culture)). There was, however, one redeeming moment, and it wasn’t JT performing with Projector Prince (although, musically, that was the highlight).
It was the tremendous feat the city of Minneapolis pulled off in alighting the Prince symbol in purple outside of the stadium in honor of the man. That was an incredible moment (the choice of Prince song — “I Would Die 4 U” — felt a little too on the nose, although it was certainly a synergestic lead-in to last night’s This Is Us).