The lost Weeknd: Singer’s halftime show falls short of Super Bowl caliber

Instead, the game’s highlight was the national anthem collaboration of odd couple Jazmine Sullivan and Eric Church.

SHARE The lost Weeknd: Singer’s halftime show falls short of Super Bowl caliber
1300913104.jpg

Surrounded by dancers in identical outfits and bandaged faces, The Weeknd performs Sunday during halftime of Super Bowl LV in Tampa, Florida.

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

His name is The Weeknd but his Super Bowl performance felt like a dreary Monday morning.

The pop star headlined the Super Bowl halftime show, running through his many hits like an Olympic relay track team aiming for the gold. But he wasn’t victorious Sunday night — not even silver or bronze medals will be handed out here.

The Weeknd kicked off his 14-minute set in his signature red blazer and sunglasses, directing his robotic ensemble and singing “Call Out My Name.” His nasally, semi-Michael Jackson-esque vocals shined — especially during “The Hills” and “Earned It” — but the performance felt like it was designed for a routine awards show in the vein of the Billboard Awards or MTV VMAs, not the Super Bowl stage.

Maybe he had restrictions — either creatively, or COVID-ly? Who knows, but overall his performance felt limited and inadequate. Special guests should have been a non-negotiable.

The Weeknd finally came to life — 10 minutes into the performance — when he and dozens of his dancers hit the field to perform the explosive hit “Blinding Lights,” giving off flash mob vibes.

He was finally center stage, where he needed to be all night. But it was too late to save the show — most of the singing was done on the sidelines, as if it was an afterthought. Maybe because it was.

Who did impress the world at the Super Bowl? Jazmine Sullivan and Eric Church.

The odd couple proved why they are multiple Grammy-nominated stars in their own right, blending their vocals beautifully to create a memorable, enjoyable rendition of “The Star Spangled Banner” on Sunday.

Church kicked off the performance, strumming his guitar and giving all the feels with his raspy vocals. Sullivan later joined in, her voice also raspy but heavy and rich, belting the lyrics like a vocal veteran. They both gained new fans Sunday night.

They finished the song singing together — Church letting Sullivan stand front and center with her beaming vocals and him right behind her, melding in epicly like a perfect teammate.

Before that performance, Grammy-winning guitar slayer H.E.R. proved her rock-star status with a rendition of “America the Beautiful.” Her vocals were soft and strong as she strummed her guitar.

Sullivan, Church and H.E.R. performed in Tampa at the Raymond James Stadium before Tampa Bay Buccaneers took on the Kansas City Chiefs.

The Latest
A news release from NU Educators for Justice in Palestine, Student Liberation Union and Jewish Voice for Peace said the camp is meant to be “a safe space for those who want to show their support of the Palestinian people.”
Powerhouse showcase is part of a weekend of music events planned for Grant Park’s Festival Field great lawn, which also features previously announced sets by Keith Urban, the Chainsmokers, the Black Keys and Lauren Alaina.
Last year, Black and Brown residents, Muslim Americans, Jewish Americans, members of the LGBTQ+ community and others were targeted in hate crimes more than 300 times. Smart new policies, zero tolerance, cooperation and unity can defeat hate.
The city is willing to put private interests ahead of public benefit and cheer on a wrongheaded effort to build a massive domed stadium — that would be perfect for Arlington Heights — on Chicago’s lakefront.
Following its launch, the popular Mediterranean restaurant is set to open a second area outlet this summer in Vernon Hills.