Review: Super Bowl LVII Half Time Show


Photo courtesy of the NFL Twitter

On September 25, 2022, the NFL released this picture on Twitter officially announcing that Rihanna would be performing in the 2023 Super Bowl halftime show with the caption “let’s go.”

Julia Gibson, Feature and Entertainment Editor

   Each year, a new artist is selected to entertain everyone during the halftime show. This year for Super Bowl LVII, R&B artist, Rihanna, was chosen. Last year’s Super Bowl halftime show featured many iconic hip-hop artists like Dr. Dre, Snoop Dog, and Eminem being just a few of the many artists, and, in 2021, The Weeknd performed. 

   This year was a fresh sight with Rihanna performing by herself. After the performance she confirmed her pregnancy, making her the first artist to perform while pregnant during a halftime show. Since Rihanna hasn’t released a new album since 2016 or performed for a while, the anticipation was high leading up to her performance. With the event approaching, fans started using the platform TikTok to try and predict how her performance would go and what song she would start with. 

   As soon as she was announced to be the performer, I was excited because I knew it was going to be a breathtaking performance. Rihanna’s all-red outfit beautifully contrasted with the dancers’ all-white outfits. Some people were upset because she didn’t play all of the songs they were expecting to hear, but she has too many iconic songs to perform them all. To me, Rihanna’s songs are timeless, and even though she didn’t have new songs to perform it was still fun to watch. Some people on TikTok have a theory that she was a genius for not performing all of her hit songs because now everyone is going back to listen to them, which increases her profit margins.

   In past performances like the 2015 halftime show, Katy Perry entered the camera view on a massive robotic lion and had outfit changes between every song. I think Rihanna being pregnant limited her abilities to make it more complex, but it made it easier to focus on her for the viewer. I think more work went into focusing on the choreography than the surrounding stage materials. 

   Performers for the show are not paid, but the amount of free publicity they get and the Super Bowl being one of the most watched events of the year makes up for it.  In the middle of her performance, she reapplied her makeup with her brand, Fenty Beauty, boosting sales for her which makes performing the show for free that much more worth it.