The Super Bowl is one of the most watched events of the year, and part of what elevates above just another football game is its spectacular half time show. Usually, the honor goes to one of pop's biggest acts of the year, and it's a coveted spot many true music legends have performed in. It's also one of the most-watched musical events of the year, with Katy Perry's 2015 stint reportedly holding the record for the most-watched musical performance ever.
This year, though, things went a little differently. Amid controversy surrounding the effective blackballing of Colin Kaepernick amid his Black Lives Matter protest, many artists turned down the half time show opportunity in solidarity with Kaepernick – with the literal goddess, Rihanna reported being among them.
And the controversy didn't stop there. The half time show was performed by Maroon 5, and let's just say there wasn't an enthusiastic reception. Amid the online savagery, lead singer Adam Levine has spoken out.
For those who missed it, the 53rd Super Bowl happened on Sunday.The NFL game between the Los Angeles Rams and the New England Patriots ended with a score of 3 to 13 in the Patriots' favor.
As ever, it was one of the most watched television events of the year.Just over 100 million viewers tuned in, according to CBS – although this is actually a dip in ratings when compared to previous years.
Alongside the football, there's another big attraction.The Super Bowl half time show is what elevates it from championship football game to massive cultural event.
Many of the biggest pop acts have performed in this slot.Including Prince, Lady Gaga, Beyoncé, Bruno Mars, and Katy Perry. Katy Perry's 2015 half time performance is thought the be the most watched musical event of all time.
This year's pick was a little bit controversial, though.Because of issues with the NFL and their policy on race, many of the biggest artists of the year turned down the spot. In the end, the performers chosen for the show were the prolific pop-rock artists, Maroon 5.
The LA based band formed in 1994, giving them a significant amount of history.They've had a long and lucrative career, with big hits including This Love, Moves Like Jagger and She Will Be Loved. Lead singer Adam Levine has also been a judge on The Voice.
The band headlined the Super Bowl LIII half time show this year.Many thought the show was doomed to failure from the start, with artists including Jay Z and Cardi B reportedly turning down the gig. Colin Kaepernick's lawyer compared Maroon 5's decision to perform to strikebreaking, saying it was a cop-out.
Maroon 5 weren't alone onstage.The band were joined by rap artists Big Boi, and Kylie Jenner's beau, Travis Scott. But even additional help from some super hot artists couldn't save the performance.
Because critical reception of the performance was pretty rough.The vast majority of the viewing public, alongside television and music critics, said the show was lackluster, dull, boring, uninspired and forgettable.
In combination with the controversy of accepting the offer to perform, it's all pretty disastrous.The apolitical nature of a performance already criticized for being bland and not standing for anything rendered it one of the least popular half time shows of all time.
The decision to go with Maroon 5 was questioned.
In a world full of choices, Maroon 5 for #SuperbowlHalftime was a CHOICE. https://t.co/SyhExrxHiq— Kyr (@Kyr)1549369499.0
Some found aspects of the performance pretty awkward.
Tell me this isn't Adam Levine dancing next to Travis Scott for the halftime show https://t.co/ROh5BEAc7q— Madison Yeash (@Madison Yeash)1549248573.0
Even some celebs got in on the critique.This harsh comment comes from singer and bassist for pop-punk band Blink 182, Mark Hoppus.
People weren't keen on Adam Levine's choice of outfit.
Why is Adam Levine wearing my curtains? https://t.co/ocz2jiDjyJ— Dillon Brelsford ❼ (@Dillon Brelsford ❼)1549250766.0
Although, things took a different turn.
The Patriots winning another Super Bowl after Adam Levine took his shirt off is the worst thing to happen to the ci… https://t.co/LXZ1enUEl2— sreekar (@sreekar)1549250117.0
Some compared the gratuitous shirtlessness to this scene from The Office.
the world: Adam Levine: https://t.co/ixs00QBEfJ— berry (@berry)1549343387.0
Although Levine's toplessness got people speaking about a bigger issue
But Adam Levine can go around lookin like a chipotle bag and that’s a-okay https://t.co/CJOIyDgCgA— Meredith (@Meredith)1549366176.0
Regardless of superficial complaints, though, the half time show has been panned.
Hands down the worst halftime show I’ve ever seen from a #SuperBowl. Everything rushed, too many artists, no defina… https://t.co/pULdHvOws0— Jordan Schultz (@Jordan Schultz)1549243278.0
The tedious showing may go down in history as one of the least popular ever.
Maroon 5 and Justin Timberlake racing to put out the worst performance #SuperBowl #PepsiHalftimeShow https://t.co/JoeBeQLTmw— eric (@eric)1549244555.0
Some pointed out an upside to the Maroon 5 performance.
It was nice to see all of America finally come together as one to tell Maroon 5 they sucked.— Shawn Chatfield (@Shawn Chatfield)1549331904.0
Some have said the criticism of the half time show was part of a greater issue.
By far the most boring Super Bowl I've ever watched #SuperBowl #SuperBowl2019 https://t.co/VkkQBSl86o— 🐙Syd🐙 (@🐙Syd🐙)1549248834.0
Others have bravely stood in support of Levine's decision to go shirtless.
@adamlevine about all the people mad that you took your shirt off during the superbowl, I can tell you one thing...… https://t.co/wMN8iVV2jD— looney (@looney)1549372334.0