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This year at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Calif., we saw the Bengals and the Rams take the field for quite the match. They played a very entertaining game, and the Rams eventually trumped the Bengals 23-20. That was not the only entertainment of the evening, though. The halftime performance featured multiple iconic R&B and rap artists such as Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent, Kendrick Lamar, Eminem and Mary J. Blige. These artists gave a fantastic show that kept the crowd fired up for the game taking place, regardless of whether they were at home or in person.

To further explain the halftime performance, we can start by discussing the setlist. The opening songs were “The Next Episode” and “California Love,” performed by Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. Following that opening was 50 Cent singing “In Da Club,” and then Mary J Blige came in with all her glory and contributed “Family Affair” and “No More Drama” to the set. Next, we saw Kendrick Lamar on the field where he performed “MAAD City” and “Alright.” Dr. Dre reappeared to then collaborate with Kendrick Lamar and Eminem. They performed “Forgot About Dre” as a trio. Dre and Kendrick then dropped back so that Eminem could add “Lose Yourself” to the set as a solo. All the aforementioned artists then came together to sing “Still Dre” as the closing performance.

Now that we’ve discussed what the set entailed, we can analyze it. The first two songs brought on some serious nostalgia from the 90s as two of the biggest rap hits of that decade. Then, 50 Cent moved us into the early 2000s, continuing this feeling of nostalgia. Things are slowed down with the beautiful vocals of Mary J Blige, next. We were brought further along in time to the 2010s as Kendrick Lamar sang some of the best rap songs from early in that decade. To tie in Eminem as a new artist, we saw Dr. Dre and Kendrick Lamar join him to perform yet another 90s rap hit. Eminem next performed one of his most well-known songs, which is a very popular workout song as well. Finally, every artist joined one another to perform one final hit from the 90s. This entire set was filled with remembrance of some of America’s favorite rappers and R&B artists. Each performer did very well with their portion of the show. Their performances showed us that each one of them has definitely “still got it.”

This show, in its entirety, was very well constructed. The performance list covered many demographics and had something for almost every group. The majority of the performers were satisfying for any rap or hip-hop fan. Adversely, Mary J Blige is a very respected vocalist no matter what genre you prefer, so she can satisfy those that hold vocals to a very high standard in their performances. She also helped catch the attention of the female demographic. Though the performance held a lot of significance for those who appreciate music from the 90s and early 2000s, Kendrick Lamar also held a spot in the lineup that could resonate with younger viewers fairly well. This halftime show had a little bit of something for almost everyone. I personally thought it was a very good one.

With all of the good things about this performance, there were also the couple of controversies. To begin, as Snoop Dogg rose onto the stage on a platform, he was smoking marijuana rather openly. This posed a very large issue with the regulations set by the NFL. To be honest, I was absolutely not surprised by this action from Snoop Dogg, as it is a major aspect of his “brand.” It also did nothing to hinder his amazing performance. Another almost-controversy involving Eminem did take place during the performance of “California Love” by Dr Dre and Snoop Dogg. He was kneeling during this performance, and this was cause for confusion among fans. No one quite knew why he was doing this, or if he was attempting to peacefully protest. This was cause for concern by NFL officials who have prohibited this action among players. Later, Eminem himself explained that he was doing this in memory of Tupac Shakir, the song’s original artist. This largely diffused the situation and it gave a way to memorialize Tupac in this performance. Overall, neither of these actions caused issues with this otherwise very impressive halftime show.

Once again, I would like to state that this performance was very impressive and monumental. Each artist brought something unique to the table, both in their performance and in the demographics they were able to reach. This performance had its upsides along with its issues— it was very entertaining, even from the couch. I have high hopes for future performances, especially if they were anything like this one.

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Grace Oatman

Bradley U '25

I am a Freshman Psychology major at Bradley University. I hope to be a Pediatric Psychologist. In my time with Her Campus I would like to write about mental health in our society, as it is something I am passionate about. I also do enjoy a good entertainment piece and intend to write plenty of them too. I also currently write for our twitter page; insert self-promo here: @HCBradleyU. That's all for now though. – g:)
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