For all the pomp and excess of Madonna’s Super Bowl halftime extravaganza a single extended middle finger by guest singer M.I.A. is likely to be the most remembered piece of the show.
The gesture, accompanied by a barely disguised expletive, came during a performance of Madonna’s new single, “Give Me All Your Luvin.”‘ At the end of her lines, M.I.A. appeared to sing “I don’t give a (expletive),” although it was hard to hear clearly.
“The NFL hired the talent and produced the halftime show,” NBC spokesman Christopher McCloskey said. “Our system was late to obscure the inappropriate gesture and we apologize to our viewers.”
The NFL blamed a failure in NBC’s delay system for allowing the gesture to be seen. Spokesman Brian McCarthy said M.I.A. did not do anything similar during rehearsals and the league had no reason to believe she would pull something like that during the actual show.
“The obscene gesture in the performance was completely inappropriate, very disappointing, and we apologize to our fans,” McCarthy said.
Madonna had admittedly been nervous about her performance, hoping to position herself as the queen of a new generation of pop stars with an opulent show and a sharp performance that mixed her new release with more familiar songs. She seemed like Roman royalty when muscle-bound men carried her extravagant throne across the football field to the stage for her opening song, “Vogue.”
Guests Cee Lo, Nicki Minaj and dance rockers LMFAO also appeared with Madonna. The singing and dancing on “Vogue” was smartly choreographed, as Madonna moved more deliberately – she is 53 – but still adroitly. She briefly appeared to stumble at one point while trying to make a step on the stage set, but recovered in time.
She let a tightrope walker make the more acrobatic moves during a performance of “Music.”
Madonna carried gold pompons for a performance of her new single. Twitter was alight with questions about the vocals being lip synched or augmented by tapes, particularly during this song.
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Via | Chicago Tribune