The other thing I wanted to see was the halftime show. See, I've heard of the Black Eye Peas, but I've never heard their music. They didn't sound bad. I will certainly be looking for a CD or two of theirs next time I'm out and about.
But, although the zen masters will teach us that change is the only constant in the universe, there are certain other constants as well. Death. Taxes. The sun rising. And people bitching about the halftime show.
I've said it before and I'll say it again -- the halftime show is not a concert. It's just meant to keep the crowd occupied during halftime. It's a snack, not a main course. It reminds me of when I was a kid and I went to a Passover dinner for the first time. I was expecting a feast. I didn't register that this would not be like that until afterwards. Nobody seems to be considering what they are getting.
For the past six years, the Super Bowl halftime show has featured what is insensitively referred to as "codger rock." The Rolling Stones, the Who, stuff like that. All because of the Janet Jackson fiasco from before. Prince's performance didn't help. He played a custom guitar with a knob on it that, when he was behind the screen, his silhouette looked like he had a hard-on. The NFL is trying to maintain a safe for the family feel. Any band that plays has to tone it down a bit.
The thing about the BEP's set was those costumes. I'm sure I'm not the only one who made the joke, "Nice headlamps", when Fergie appeared. In fact, all members of the group looked like they got lost on the way to shoot the next Tron sequel. Still, they didn't sound bad. For the most part. The sound guy was asleep at the switch. When they started their first song, I noticed I could only really hear one of them. I hoped that would be corrected, but Fergie got halfway through her first line before they turned her voice up.
The singing was real, but the music itself was DAT'ed. No real spontaneity to it, but once again, you have a schedule here, I can let that slide. It's just a revue, not a concert you're paying $70 just to sit in the cheap seats. Was Slash bored or wasted? I don't know, I've never been a G'nR fan anyway, so I could have done without him completely.
Usher's set was actually pretty nice. The choreography was good and he seemed to be having a good time. The BEP's seemed intimidated but still happy, especially during the closing number.
But here's the thing. It was what it was supposed to be -- a set that ate up the clock without doing anything risky that could get Fox in trouble with the feds. The people complaining have their expectations set way too high. Just let it happen. People like us more interested in the halftime show than the game are in the viewer minority anyway.