Justin Timberlake performed his biggest hits (and a Prince tribute) at the Super Bowl.

Justin Timberlake performed his biggest hits (and a Prince tribute) at the Super Bowl.

Before JT’s Super Bowl Halftime Show aired, blogs all over the Internet wrote countless stories about how the singer’s white privilege has taken him to stratospheric heights of superstardom. His new album, Man of the Woods, wasn’t well received (though it’s on track to debut at No. 1 with pretty astounding figures) and his outdoorsy esthetic of the record confused most of us. Internet takedown culture had decided Justin is no longer relevant and his Super Bowl performance had real potential to fail. Fortunately, he didn’t give the naysayers much to work with.

Timberlake ran through most of his most influential and timeless hits over five solo studio albums (there was no *NSYNC tribute which I’m not happy about). He kicked things off with an underground dance party to his new lead single, “Filthy,” then catapulted into some oldies but goodies, including “Rock Your Body” (it’s worth mentioning he skipped the infamous Janet line and that was questionable), “Senorita,” FutureSex LoveSounds banger “SexyBack,” “”My Love” and arguably his biggest hit ever, “Cry Me A River.”

It wouldn’t be a JT show with a massive dance break, which preceded “Suit & Tie” and “Until The End of Time.”

There were reports that Justin would NOT perform with a Prince hologram, which wasn’t entirely accurate. A huge projection of the late singer flashed on a massive curtain with the surrounding areas of the city lighting up in purple. If JT ignored Prince in Minneapolis, there would have been an even bigger meltdown – this wasn’t a battle Timberlake could win. My opinion, it was a smart move to include Prince.

“Paying tribute to Prince was something JT highlighted as an important moment for this show, and we spent quite a bit of time ensuring this moment would be true to his legacy,” said the performance’s creative lead, Nick Whitehouse, to Rolling Stone. “Ultimately, Justin decided that the only person who could do Prince justice is Prince.”

He rounded out the show with “Mirrors” and the warm and fuzzy Trolls soundtrack song, “Can’t Stop The Feeling.”

My final thoughts? He looked confident, sounded solid and gave viewers an escape for 13-minutes with a funky walk down memory lane. Will it become one of the most memorable Halftime Shows down the line? Absolutely not, and that’s OK right now. After causing such a ruckus in 2004 for his wardrobe malfunction, the singer was probably not inclined to make such an impression. There’s no denying it though – JT got the job done.

Watch below (or on YouTube):

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10 Responses

    1. To be fair, the past few Superbowl halftime shows have been bore fests. The music industry is simply not iconic like it used to be. 20 years from now, looking back… most people will not even remember anything from these past few years lol. Even if it was Britney up there, I’m pretty sure her team would just make them do the mini-POM again with maybe 1 new song if we were lucky lol.

      1. Idk about that. Gaga’s has been one of the most compared to JT’s. Her jump off the roof and jump to catch the football to close was iconic. Not to mention the subtle hints of inclusive nature. Other than that Katys, Madonnas, and Brunos were all predictable and bland.

  1. good that happens to you! It was horrible a pathetic scenario, nothing exciting, a dreary sound, a costume garbage, nobody from the real audience was excited only the ones bought, BREATHEHEAVY what happened! They seem to be paid for saying false things and looking good with everyone

  2. I thought they did a great job, enjoyed it very much, I had to adjust the sound on my surround sound tho.. but once I did that it was great ..J.T. you still got it dude..I heard you ,I saw you, I felt your performance, and if you only got through to one person you were a success… I got the whole thing and a will be watching it over and over again..Glad you did it, THE-V-DOGG!!

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