Musing pop culture

4 Reasons to Skip the Super Bowl Half-Time Show

Unless you’re living under a rock–in which case, well done on getting wi-fi reception–you know the Super Bowl is tomorrow. The odds are good that you are either throwing a Super Bowl party or attending one. For readers in the first group, I’d like you to consider a minor but meaningful step: Consider tuning out of the broadcast when the half-time show begins. I have four reasons.

  1. The Super Bowl halftime performance has a history of unnecessary sexual suggestiveness. Even artists who aren’t typically known for strutting their sex appeal seem to try to salt things up at their halftime performance. Most of the time, of course, TV regulations prevent things from getting explicit. But a part of me thinks that actually makes the halftime more harmful. Most audiences would turn away in anger and disgust at something genuinely pornographic. The danger, I think, is in the “I’m at the line but not crossing it” stuff that gets stuck in the head. Preventing this is absurdly easy: for 15 minutes, watch something else.
  2. It’s widely assumed that this year’s artist, Lady Gaga, will make some sort of political statement with her performance. Hear me: Even if you are someone who is likely to be sympathetic to whatever statement gets made, aren’t you at least somewhat depressed by the aggressive omnipresence of politics in every aspect of pop culture? Do you, informed citizen, really need Lady Gaga to authenticate your views? Do yourself a favor: Make the big game about football, food, and friends. Leave politics at the door.
  3. The vast majority of halftime shows are incredibly lame, even by television concert standards. Perhaps you’re the kind of person who enjoys lip-sync, advertisement-centered choreography, and poor sound quality. If that’s you, yeah, you might get a kick out of the halftime show. If on the other hand all that sounds annoying, then you might wanna contemplate that the most interesting thing the halftime show has produced in recent years was a shark that didn’t know how to dance. Bottom line: You’re not missing anything.
  4. Halftime is a great chance to jumpstart your party. I’ve been to enough Super Bowl get togethers to know that the non-football people generally give up on the game a little before halftime, and the football people tend to be more invested in the action in the second half. Play a rapid fire game with your party instead of watching the halftime show. Get the fans and non-fans hanging out for just a few minutes. This is more fun, and it also will decrease the likelihood of seeing your guests whip out their iPhones and spend the evening on Twitter, seeing what people are saying about the halftime show.

These suggestions I commend to you that your Super Bowl joy may be complete. No shame for those who disagree.

By Samuel D. James

Believer, husband, father, acquisitions editor, writer.