Super Bowl LIII Halftime Show: Hit or Miss?

Halftime Show Leaves Fans Disappointed


The Super Bowl is famously known for being the biggest night in football for the National Football League. Fans tune in to cheer on their team, if they made it all the way to the Super Bowl, watch the commercials, and watch the Super Bowl halftime show. This year for Super Bowl LIII (53), band Maroon 5 hosted the halftime show along with rapper Travis Scott and Atlanta legend Big Boi. However, the halftime show has been having mixed emotions about the performance. Super Bowl LIII was played at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, GA with the Los Angeles Rams competing against the New England Patriots for the famous Vince Lombardi trophy and a coveted Super Bowl ring. It was a pretty slow game to start out with. By halftime, the Patriots were only up 3-0. Most fans were looking forward to the halftime show because huge surprises were in store from all the performers.

Dressed like a goth version of Hugh Jackman in The Greatest Showman and accompanied by fireballs, Levine crooned, warbled, and wiggled his way through Maroon 5’s custardy hits about love lost, “She Will be Loved,” love found “Sugar,” and love best enjoyed naked, “Moves Like Jagger.” The dancing was not exactly memorable, and save for an attention-grabbing SpongeBob SquarePants segue and entertaining appearances by Travis Scott and Big Boi, there was not really a standout moment of searing spectacle. Instead, perhaps the most compelling part of the performance was how lead singer Adam Levine managed to go from wearing a long coat to shirtless over the course of the 15-minute show. The thing about a lot of Maroon 5’s most popular songs is that, with the exception of perhaps “Moves Like Jagger,” none really snap, crackle, or pop from the start. Songs like “What Lovers Do,” “Girls Like You,” and “Sugar,” while plenty catchy, do not really have peaks or drops in emotions. These songs are perfect radio songs to sing along to. With that seemingly in mind, the band kicked off with their hit “Harder to Breathe”—a song that builds and builds, unlike some of their aforementioned hits. Also, Levine’s locals were a little dodgy from the start, missing some of the short vocal bursts in the beginning. Though he ended up finding his comfort zone as the band transitioned into their second song, “This Love,” the overall mellowness of the medley that also included “Girls Like You” and “She Will be Loved,” never really felt exciting until the last third.

Because of the show’s unenthusiastic start, the brief moments where Maroon 5 shared the spotlight with Travis Scott and Big Boi were welcome. Before introducing Scott, the show cut to an animated interlude by SpongeBob SquarePantsin homage to “Sweet Victory,” a song that the SpongeBob cast performed in 2001. The segment was a love letter to SpongeBob creator Stephen Hillenburg, who passed away from ALS in November 2018. After the sweet gesture, Travis Scott blazed onto the stage—appearing to arrive via a literal comet in the sky and then rapping his hit single “Sicko Mode” while surrounded by flames. The shift in energy was noticeable (and probably relative to Maroon 5’s sweet hits), as Scott gave the performance a sense of edge and excitement. Big Boi, in a majestic fur coat, tapped into that same kind of energy, performing Outkast’s “The Way You Move.” The change-ups helped the show along until Levine finally found his groove.

After the halftime show concluded, social media exploded with unsatisfied posts from fans about not receiving a show they were initially promised. The show overall was fine, but there could have been improvements and more could have been done to make the show more enthusiastic. Many memes were also created shortly after the performers left the field. Fans were extremely upset by there not being a “Sweet Victory” tribute during the show after seeing/hearing multiple rumors about on the Internet. People also commented on how Levine’s shirt resembled a couch pillow or drapes in their living room. Also, people commented on how Levine was trying to constantly catch his breath, which made the show seem substandard and rushed.

At the end of the day, Maroon 5 put on a show for fans to enjoy. Overall, the show was fine but many fans are still stating how subpar the show was and what could have been done to make the show more exciting. It is not easy to perform at the Super Bowl where millions of people are watching and mistakes can make those watching upset. Now we await for Super Bowl LIV (54) and see who will perform at the halftime show next year!