The Super Bowl halftime show has become a cultural phenomenon that has set a milestone in the music and entertainment industry. However, this was not always the case. Earlier halftime shows were usually performed by collegiate bands, until Michael Jackson revolutionized the event. Below, we share our count down with the best and worst performances of all time.
Best Halftime Show Performance
After losing 10 ratings points during the 1992 halftime entertainment, the show needed to be renewed. Answer? Michael Jackson. The King of Pop arrived to revolutionize the event, delivering the best show in Super Bowl history. Jackson remained motionless for nearly two minutes, raising the audience’s expectations. The number was marked by great hits, the famous ‘Moonwalk’ and thousands of children singing for a better world.
The artist made history in 2007 by delivering one of the most memorable performances in the history of the event. The performance was a tribute to great artists such as Creedence Clearwater Revival, Bob Dylan and the Foo Fighters. Prince closed with a rousing performance of his hit, ‘Purple Rain’ as Dolphins stormed the stadium.
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Following the critical presentation of The Black Eyed Peas, the event needed to justify itself. Madonna’s halftime show for the following year was chosen to achieve the right balance between musical quality and visual spectacle.
The ‘I Kissed a Girl’ singer put on an unforgettable performance as she entered the stadium riding on a giant golden lion. Their number featured a special appearance by Lenny Kravitz and concluded with Perry pretending to be a shooting star while ‘Firework’ played.
Beyoncé’s performance was historic as it began with Vince Lombardi’s iconic speech. His acting was marked by hits like Run the World, Love on Top, Crazy in Love, End of Time, Baby Boy and Bootylicious. The cherry on the cake? Destiny’s Child reunion. During the stadium tour, Queen B was so inspired that she wrote the hit ‘Partition’.
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Worst Halftime Show Performance
The presentation that caused the Super Bowl to lose 10 ratings points was the Winter Magic halftime show. That year, the NFL selected a special number for the Olympic Games, allowing Gloria Estefan to appear in the event for the first time. However, FOX won over CBS viewers with a live episode of ‘Living in Color’.
After Jackson’s iconic performance, the 1995 halftime show took a major step back. The show was presented by Disney, which featured a special number on Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye. The purpose of the presentation was to promote the Indiana Jones Adventure attraction at Disneyland, which opened the same year.
By 1997, audiences had already seen performances from greats like Michael Jackson and Diana Ross, so The Blues Brothers’ performance was truly a disappointment. The number served as a promotion for the release of a film by the brothers, which premiered the following year.
Black Eyed Peas
The Black Eyed Peas show has been one of the most criticized in modern times. This was the first time that contemporary artists returned to the Super Bowl since the wardrobe malfunctions of Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake. His performance failed to impress or connect with the audience.
Following the death of SpongeBob creator Stephen Hillenburg, expectations for a tribute to the halftime show were really high. Not being able to complete them made the disappointment even greater. The Adam Levine-led band failed to connect with the audience, resulting in one of the most disappointing shows of all time.
Super Bowl LVIII, Kansas City Chiefs vs. The San Francisco 49ers will be at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada on February 11. The person in charge of the halftime show for 2024 will be Usher. Will he be able to stand out?