Fifty: the number of Super Bowl games that have been played. This means that there have also been fifty halftime shows. These shows have evolved over the years and have become spectacles that could be considered even more memorable than the games themselves; especially for the people who only watch the game for the halftime show (yes, I am one of those people).
In the early years of the Super Bowl, the halftime show featured marching bands from various locations; Florida, Arizona, and Michigan, to name a few. Throughout the years halftime shows have had themes, though not every year. For example, for the 25th Super Bowl, they made a “Small World Salute” to the 25 years of Bowl games, which was produced by Disney.
This year, 2016, Coldplay performed, along with Beyoncé and Bruno Mars, who have each performed recently in their own respective Super Bowl halftime shows. Initially, the announcement that Coldplay would be performing was not well received. Many thought that their music style was too mellow for such a large production. However, the news that Beyoncé and Bruno Mars would join the band improved overall opinions.
Post-show, the performance received mixed reviews. Because the show displayed a multitude of rainbows and color, people were led to believe that the show was promoting LGBT ideals. Of course, people opposed to this idea took to social media to complain about the Super Bowl supporting the LGBT community. Contrary to this idea, an article on gaystarnews.com explained that the color was used to promote Coldplay’s new album, A Head Full of Dreams. Whether this is true or not, people will believe what they want to believe.
Another issue was that Beyoncé’s new song “Formation” criticizes law enforcement. According to an article posted on The Huffington Post, “Formation” is about a variety of things; mainly, the continued ill treatment of black victims of Hurricane Katrina. Her dancers were all dressed in Black Panther-esque outfits and they later took a picture holding a sign with Mario Woods’ name on it (Woods was shot by police after refusing to hand over his knife). Many agree that Beyoncé “slayed” her performance, and I agree that she did quite well. It was to her advantage that the song had just been released the week before, and her first live performance of the song happened to be at the Super Bowl. This allowed her to reach a large audience easily.
Aside from the problems, the Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show was different from other shows of the past. The biggest difference is that it took place in broad daylight. Typically, the halftime shows have all been at night, featuring fireworks and all sorts of crazy lighting. So, this show was simpler in that respect. Another aspect is that the performers did not have any costume changes, aside from taking off a jacket or putting one on. In comparison, last year, Katy Perry had three costume changes within her 12-minute performance.
Overall, I think Coldplay, Beyoncé, and Bruno Mars did a great job with the show. They teamed up to create a memorable and exciting performance. All issues aside, the Super Bowl Halftime Show will always be an iconic part of the night, regardless of who performs.