SUPER BOWL HALFTIME SHOW: Eminem kneels, Blige shines bright

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Well, apparently two of the most controversial issues leading up to Sunday night’s Super Bowl halftime show happened and no one had any issues.

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At least to our knowledge.

Showcasing an all-star rap lineup for the first time, Eminem took a knee at the end of his standout performance of You lose in a shoutout to Colin Kaepernick, who was apparently frowned upon by the NFL ahead of Sunday night in Inglewood, Calif. (yet league reps told the New York Post that players have been taking the knee since 2016 without penalties so it was no big deal.)

Meanwhile, Dr Dre from nearby Compton hasn’t changed his specific lyrics (“still not liking the police”) from the end of his 1999 hit show, Still ERDwhich was also apparently against the wishes of the NFL.

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Snoop Dogg, Mary J. Blige and Kendrick Lamar, plus special guests 50 Cent and Anderson Paak on drums, shared the stage — essentially a large white platform featuring five all-white, two-story mini-stages.

It was an idea that had been slow in coming after the rappers had been invited for other halftime artists before, but never as headliners.

Dre added two deaf rappers, Sean Forbes and Warren “WaWa” Snipe, marking the first time sign language interpreters will be included in the halftime show.

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Seated behind a large white sound table, Dre appeared for the first time joined by Snoop Dog for The next episode with the production ensemble acknowledging Compton landmarks such as Tam’s Burgers and Eve’s After Dark and the Martin Luther King Memorial.

Dre and Snoop Dogg also performed Tupac california love before 50 Cent took over on his own to In the club.

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But it was Blige, resplendent in a long blonde wig, huge diamond hoop earrings, a silver sequined bodysuit and thigh-high boots, who sang to death family affair and More dramafinally crashing onto his back after some deep knee bends during the second song.

Mary J. Blige performs during the halftime show.  MIKE SEGAR/REUTERS
Mary J. Blige performs during the halftime show. MIKE SEGAR/REUTERS

Lamar was next on the stadium floor that looked like a map of the streets of Compton (where he’s also from), as he emerged from a cluster of black boxes that said ‘Dre Day’, filled with dancers guys with matching dyed blonde hair. , black outfit and green scarves that said “Dre Day”, performing MADD City and Good.

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by Eminem You lose followed, with Paak on drums and a lively horn section, and you could see Blige and 50 Cent grooving to the song on a couch on set.

The highest rating, in terms of Super Bowl halftime shows, has long been Prince’s 2007 guitar-shredding heart-pounding performance in the rain and the lowest-rating, most recent anyway, was Maroon 5 in 2019.

Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg perform during the halftime show.  MIKE SEGAR/REUTERS
Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg perform during the halftime show. MIKE SEGAR/REUTERS

This year’s lineup fell somewhere in between with little flash, but plenty of song integrity, and the not-so-secret weapon in the form of Blige, Queen of Hip Hop Soul, who has called the appearance “the opportunity of a lifetime”. .”

I might have used the shiny new SoFi Stadium more, with a retractable roof and the so-called Infinity Screen and those three vintage convertibles parked on the floor for maybe a fun entrance or exit.

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Still, there were real fans in the seats, including stars given the proximity to Hollywood, including Charlize Theron, LeBron James, Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck after many cutouts had to be used for the performance at the halftime of The Weeknd’s Super Bowl last year in Tampa due to COVID-19 restrictions.

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