Prior to 1991, the Super Bowl halftime show wasn’t really all that.
[It wasn’t all that in 2018 either, thanks to JT’s sub-par performance, but we’re moving on.]
Most of the performers were old timers, the fanfare was low-key, and it was really just a bit of song and dance wedged in between the football.
That all changed with the appearance of New Kids on the Block in ’91, who were at the time one of the biggest names in music. The following year Gloria Estefan performed, but rival networks managed to steal their thunder.
…Fox decided to counter program against the halftime show with a live episode of their then-hit comedy series In Living Color … and it worked. Viewers left the Super Bowl and tuned into Fox instead.
The following year, the NFL was determined to keep viewers glued to their sets, and that’s where Michael Jackson came in.
MJ’s performance forever changed what the halftime show meant to viewers, advertisers and broadcasters, with the surge in ratings sustained throughout the rest of the match.
Look at the leap just after the one-minute mark…magic:
And that’s why they called him the ‘King of Pop’.
Pity he was such a creep, right?
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