The Excessive Excess of the Halftime Horror Show

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Why you should care

Because if you know a football fan, are a football fan, love a football fan or even hate a football fan, then you should know that the Super Bowl halftime show is nothing but spirit-killing.

Like Superman, the Super Bowl includes the adjective “super” because it really is over and above any reasonable measure of greatness.

Americans consume more food on that day than on any other, besides Thanksgiving. It’s the second-most watched televised sporting event in the world. And in the U.S. alone, it routinely draws more than 100 million watchers from an approximate pool of 313 million potential viewers. Which means if you’re not watching, it’s very likely that one of the two people next to you is.

In this fan’s view, all the hysterical enthusiasm is warranted. When the Denver Broncos face off against the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII this February 2nd in East Rutherford, N.J., the event will be bursting with stories, substories and superstories floating over and around the game, laced with narratives about truth, honor, justice and the American mania for all the above.

But plopped right in the middle of the earnest pigskin panic comes the Super Bowl halftime show, to temporarily cleanse the palate — or halt the buzz. This year’s guests are the estimable Bruno Mars, fresh off of picking up a Grammy, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who used to appear naked but for strategically placed tube socks, cementing their appeal to frat-house humorists everywhere.

We were sprawled out on the couch, drinking and celebrating athletic achievement by eating fried foods.

All performers on stage, Britney in center, N'Sync surrounding her as they are all performing.

NSYNC, Britney Spears, and Joe Perry during MTV’s Superbowl halftime show in Tampa, Fla.

Source Scott Gries/Getty

So far as we’re concerned, this halftime horror cannot stand. Or, at the very least, we’re not going to stand for it. Actually we weren’t standing, anyway … we were sprawled out on the couch, drinking and celebrating athletic achievement by eating fried foods. Which is beside the point, which is actually this: Save the singing for the Oscars and leave the football fans to our drink and our panicked calls to our bookies.Like these artists or hate them, they will do two things beyond a shadow of a doubt: They will play too long, and they will suck. Even if they don’t suck individually, they will suck together and succeed beyond all measure in snuffing out the collective buzz developed through careful planning, plenty of alcohol and canned cheese sprayed directly into our mouths. They will suck because they will fail to follow the most basic rule of entertainment: Know your audience. Or to quote Chris Rock, “Nobody’s watching you, Rockwell!” Even if the actual time they play is set in stone and not truly all that long in the scheme of things, it will feel long simply because it’s not why we’re there.

It’s just the American way!

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