For everything that the NFL did wrong with the Atlanta halftime show three years ago, they are trying to make up for it in a big way. When it first announced the Super LVI halftime show lineup of Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar, and Eminem, it was clear what the league is going for with the Los Angeles Super Bowl halftime show — vibes.
This isn’t going to be a grab your second plate, or go over the business acquisition details at halftime kind of a show. This is going to be a multi-generational, get-your-beverage-ready at the end of the second quarter,make sure the big speakers are on kind of a halftime show.
The NFL released a video today to promote this year’s performances and, with all due respect to the trailer for the Weeknd’s show last year, this year’s trailer is a declaration that halftime in 2022 is no intermission, a whole concert is about to break out in the middle of a football game.
The trailer opens with these giant gold chess pieces being moved around as a skyline proceeds to rise up from the chess board. For every move made, another artist realizes that it’s time to head to the stadium for the show. Thank goodness they opened with Eminem, because his music is so much fun that his portion of the trailer is him rapping really fast in the background, while his current self and his TRL era bleach blonde self physically arrange punchlines like a puzzle.
Then the party picks up with the person I was introduced to on The Arsenio Hall Show saying, “I’m not gonna tell kids don’t do drugs” — there’s context to that statement but the context isn’t why I’ve remembered that exact quote for almost 30 years — the world’s most loveable gangsta rapper, Snoop Dogg. He pulls a monster U-turn on two wheels in a lowrider, because Snoop is one of the coolest people in the world.
After Snoop, Mary J. Blige and Kendrick Lamar stop what they’re doing to head to the show, the final artist, Dr. Dre, is seen walking along the beach with a virtual piano in the ocean playing the chords to “Still D.R.E.” Sign me up for the festival date, if COVID ever ends, much less the halftime show.
Next, the Los Angeles skyline rises out of the chessboard and it is revealed that all of the pieces have been moved by Dr. Dre. Then they all meet in the parking lot — which is my favorite part of the trailer because Kendrick Lamar pulls up on a chrome beach cruiser.
The halftime show at the first Super Bowl in Los Angeles since 1993 is not going to be one of those Huey Lewis and The News or Maroon 5 halftime shows. This is a Gen X and Millennials throw-your-hands-in-the-air type of production.
If only they went this hard in Atlanta. You know, the music capital of the last 20 years.