When we first heard Katy Perry will perform during the 2015 Super Bowl, one of my colleagues opined, “Well, I’m just glad we’re finally getting a halftime show dedicated to deaf adolescent boys. They’re the real winners here.” He was right. If there is one thing Perry offers, it is technically two things. Three, if you disagree with the aforementioned colleague and actually like Perry’s music. Regardless, the first two are not enough to carry the third in a stadium setting such as the Super Bowl, particularly given Perry’s rather lackadaisical approach to live performances.
Before we get any further, I must point out that Perry did not frighten me as a child. If anything, I’m a little jealous that my childhood never featured a scene such as this one Elmo enjoyed down on Sesame Street. Perry is not without her charms, but she is not an entertainer. She is an image, a voice on the radio, a pre-recorded and -edited image, a provocateur. She should stick with those things.
Lest you think the above song was cherry-picked, stay tuned, there’s more! On stage, phoning it in is her M.O. See this performance of “Waking Up in Vegas.” Or this one of “California Girls.” Now contrast that with Diamond David Lee Roth and Van Halen performing a song that may or may not be, but most likely is, my ring tone.
Now that’s entertainment. That’s a group of individuals who want to be on the stage. That’s a singer who could jump, kick, jumpkick, strut, and shimmy into our hearts. That’s what you want in a stadium, hence why those heady times were the times of arena rock. These days, it’s a different scene.
Special Times Call for Special Superstars
But it’s not just a lack of showmanship or that some may describe the choice of Perry as an affront to good taste. It’s that for Super Bowl XLIX we need something special. Something that truly reflects the spirit and character of the teams playing. On the one side, we have the Seattle Seahawks and their 9/11 truther coach. On the other, we have the most ethical team ever, a coach with more playoff wins than Tom Landry, and a quarterback who held the a press conference for the ages.
I do have to concede that the fact that Belichick has bested Landry’s record is an argument in favor of Perry. Look at Landry.
Now look at Bill Belichick hanging out with a cowboy who is missing his steel horse.
One of these things is not like the other. Namely, Belichick looks like he sneaked into the stadium in the dead of night, ate the existing coach, and assumed his powers.
Beyond the difference between Landry and Belichick, I must also concede that Brady’s epic discourse on balls is another argument in favor of Perry and her penchant ribaldry. Brady, father of what we might politely call virtual twins, may even be just the man to help her with a little bundle of fulfillment. We’ve got a man who layers sweats and a man who loves his balls and procreationing, so Perry it is. Good tastes be damned. Besides, if you look at a list of Super Bowl halftime performers, it’s not exactly a cornucopia of awesomeness.
Personally, I’d be a fan of going super old-school and bringing back the tradition of having marching bands or sundry nonsense—turn it into a glorified intermission so we can avoid that wholly incorrect yet still lurking feeling that we might miss something if we dare go to the bathroom—but that’s not going to happen anytime soon.
Conversely, I’d be a fan of using the halftime show solely to irritate Mike Huckabee. Some might argue that just using Beyoncé every year would be boring, but nobody is demanding that the Seahawks go home because they’re defending champions, so that argument is invalid. And Beyoncé, like the Seahawks, doesn’t require deflated balls autotune to entertain. She’s an entertainer who could make Diamond Dave proud.
It’s Not Just About the Entertainer, But About the Whole Event
But the Super Bowl is the Super Bowl. It is entertainment. It is a show. It’s America, dammit: a highly commercialized battle of advertisements and testosterone and advertisements for testosterone and advertisements that get your testosterone pumping. For more on this, please take a moment to read this extremely deep thinkpiece on Charlotte McKinney’s advertisement for Carl’s Jr.
As a hippie truther from California, home of blonde California girls, you know Pete Carroll cares deeply about grass-fed beef and blondes. Ergo, I’m going to go out on a limb and hazard a guess that Charlotte and that burger raised his blood pressure at least a smidge. Add that to Brady’s affinity for balls and babes as well as Belichick’s inability to put on a suit and we might just be on to something. Something worse. Something that isn’t necessarily an affront to good taste but is definitely an affront to decorum.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I now present you with my foolproof and foolhardy yet exceptionally brilliant plan to reinvigorate and revive this year’s Super Bowl halftime show: Charlotte McKinney plus AC/DC.
That’s right. I realize that time is of the essence, but organizations with fat wallets and strong will have ways of making things happen. Now is a time for that will and those wallets to come together. Have AC/DC play this ridiculously appropriate song a few times—given those Brady and Belichick pressers how can this not be the theme for the Super Bowl?—while Charlotte struts around the stage displaying her inherent talent.
And boom goes the dynamite. That’s how you make magic happen. That’s how you entertain people. That’s the performance we need.
How, Exactly, Is This a Better Idea?
Some of you may be wondering how having a scantily clad model wandering around for no real reason while AC/DC pounds through several rousing double-entendre-laden encores of the theme song for Super Bowl XLIX would be an improvement upon the former Mrs. Russell Brand. To you I say, enjoy a meaningless life exemplified by a slice of white bread with a glass of water on the side for dipping.
Okay, that’s not fair. There are fine, respectable people who might object to my suggestion even more fervently than they might to Perry, and for the same reason. We call such people “respectable.” As this is the Super Bowl, it’s a demographic we can skip because it is unlikely to be entertained regardless of whichever currently famous or bordering on washed-up stars we stick on that stage to undulate and sing with or without a “backing” tape.
For the rest of us, my proposal is, admit it, brilliant. Quick, show of hands, how many of you would be much more inclined to stay tuned in to my proposed halftime show than you are presently inclined to watch Perry? I said hands.
Exactly. For those of us with pulses and a desire to see our country and our stadium entertainment return to a hell-raising bastion that more resembles a Michael Bay movie than an Ashlee Simpson performance, we need red meat, preferably grass-fed. And the Super Bowl is an excellent venue to make that change.
So while Beyoncé may be an entertainer who doesn’t need autotune and Perry technically does have at least two positive attributes, it is time to rock, salute those who are about to, and tell the Huckabees of the world to settle down. To take a stage and fill it with ridiculousness such that we stop entertaining the idea that a carefully manicured package belongs in the center of an arena, offending our aesthetic sensibilities. Maybe next year. Until then, enjoy the show, deaf adolescent boys. This one’s dedicated to you.