Justin Timberlake‘s Super Bowl half-time show has been panned by fans, with the general consensus that JT could have atoned for past sins but failed to use the opportunity.
The 37-year-old took the field in Minneapolis for the annual event, where he ran through his back catalogue, from Sexy Back and Senorita to Rock Your Body – and a subtle nod to the infamous Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction – up to new single Filthy.
But he left fans on edge for the entire performance – would N*SYNC make a surprise appearance? Would Britney? Would there be a Prince tribute?
Well, no, no, and kind of.
Janet Jackson had already confirmed she would not be making an appearance, 14 years after JT performed with her on stage and proceeded to rip off her bodice, flashing her nipple and effectively ending her career.
Instead the pop star subtly nodded to the moment that he exposed the singer on TV in front of millions by refusing to sing the line that he sang at that moment – ‘gonna have you naked by the end of this song’.
And although Justin had never promised a N*SYNC reunion and fans knew it was unlikely, by the end of the set, which concluded with Can’t Stop The Feeling, there was a feeling of disappointment settling in.
No I Want You Back? Pop? Tearin’ Up My Heart?
The hotly rumoured Prince tribute was less than a minute-long, and saw Justin sing along to the Prince song I Would Die 4 U, as footage of Prince played behind him.
There were also no guest performers, and although JT’s back catologue is definitely strong enough to pull of a 13-minute set all on his own, the performance was never cohesive, with the pop star running around all over the place.
And fans at home were in agreement that the show was ‘underwhelming’ and ‘inconsistent’ – and that he missed his chance to make everyone’s 2018.
Justin Timberlake clearly missed the boat. No Britney, No *NSYNC, No Janet, No Shark, No Nipple. #SuperBowl
— Scott Fishman (@smFISHMAN) February 5, 2018
So…no Prince hologram, no members of the Revolution onstage, no members of Nsync onstage, Prince projected onto a big sheet…Justin Timberlake was his usual smooth self, but this Super Bowl halftime show was a little underwhelming… #superbowl
— Eric Deggans at NPR (@Deggans) February 5, 2018
Watch the full performance here: