Is Katy Perry elite?
In terms of pop superstardom, most definitely. When you have 10 No. 1 hits in a seven-year span, you are Aaron Rodgers-level elite in your chosen field. And in what counts as a ringing victory in her ongoing death-star battle with Taylor Swift, Perry has been named the performer for the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show in Glendale on Feb. 1.
Perry's involvement with the Super Bowl has been reported for weeks, but it became official during halftime of Sunday night's matchup between the Cowboys and Giants. Perry is the third female solo act in four years to headline the halftime show, following Madonna (2012) and Beyonce (2013). Bruno Mars and his random drum solo capably handled matters at MetLife Stadium in February, playing to a television audience of more than 115 million viewers in the U.S. alone.
The Perry announcement continues a trend that's seen the NFL steer away from veteran rock acts and toward younger pop artists. Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, Prince, Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen and The Who played the event in the six years AM (After Malfunction). We imagine the curious dearth of globally popular modern rock acts has played a role in this paradigm shift.
Anyway, good luck to Katy Perry, an attractive woman who sings a bunch of catchy songs that moms and teens like. She's a wholly logical pick for a cultural event of this magnitude.
And now, the six most random Super Bowl halftime acts, the titles of which were taken straight from the NFL's official press release.
6. "Celebration of Soul, Salsa and Swing" featuring Stevie Wonder, Gloria Estefan, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and tap dancer Savion Glover (XXXIII)
I refuse to believe this happened until someone can provide even a hazy recollection of the proceedings.
5. "A Tapestry of Nations" featuring Phil Collins, Christina Aguilera, Enrique Iglesias, Toni Braxton and an 80-person choir (XXXIV)
Collins and Iglesias on the same stage? "The Beatles at Shea Stadium" levels of female fan hysteria.
4. "Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye" featuring Tony Bennett, Patti LaBelle, Arturo Sandoval, the Miami Sound Machine and stunts including fire and skydivers. Finale included audience participation with light sticks (XXIX)
Yes, that was the full title, and yes, there was an elaborate Indiana Jones-themed halftime show. The 90s were sneaky weird.
3. "Heal the World" featuring Michael Jackson and 3,500 local children. Finale included audience card stunt (XXVII)
This was squarely in MJ's "I'm a Messiah And The World's Children Are My Disciples" phase. Time wouldn't remember it well.
2. "Be Bop Bamboozled" featuring 3-D effects (XXIII)
A title that gives no insight into what actually went on. You can guarantee the 3-D effects were pretty special in 1989.
1. The Black Eyed Peas (XLV)
We survived this. We are stronger than we know.