Justin Timberlake performed a medley of his most beloved hits at halftime of Super Bowl 52.
Did you catch the dance-filled act?
HERE if not.
The 13-plus minute performance featured Timberlake belting out such hits as “Can’t Stop This Feeling” and “Gone,” but the focus a day later is on the minute or two during which he sat at a piano and played a cover of Prince’s “I Would Die 4 U.”
What a nice tribute to the late musician, who made his home in the Super Bowl host city of Minnesota, right?
WRONG, many Prince fans are now saying. So very, very, very, VERY wrong.
Scroll down and all around to find out why:
May He Rest in Peace
Prince, of course, died in April of 2016. He was famous for his Minneosta mansion and he performed at halftime of the Super Bowl in 2007, leaving many to assume Timberlake would cover a song of his this year.
NO HOLOGRAM, JT!
A song would have been great, but this is where the controversy started, with talk that Timberlake would sing alongside a Prince hologram during his act. Many years ago, Prince said the following about the use of such a device: “That’s the most demonic thing imaginable. Everything is as it is, and it should be. If I was meant to jam with Duke Ellington, we would have lived in the same age. That whole virtual reality thing… it really is demonic. And I am not a demon.”
Long-time Prince friend Shiela E. said prior to the show that rumors of Timberlake using a hologram were false. She assured everyone this would NOT take place.
Social media users felt a lot better after reading the message.
And She Was Sort of Right
Check out the above photo. It’s not a hologram. It’s just a projection of Prince of a giant screen. But try parsing that difference to loyal Prince supporters, who were far from happy about Timberlake’s stunt.
Did This Count as a Hologram?
Yes, it might as well have in the eyes of critics who took to Twitter and blasted Timberlake.
Jemele Hill Chimes In
This is what the ESPN anchor and writer had to say about the so-called tribute to Prince.
Was This Even a Tribute?
Actor Avan Jogia hinted that Timberlake never liked Prince and hurled purposeful shade in his direction. Are you buying that theory?
Did Prince Get Revenge?
No. Sorry for the SPOILER ALERT if you haven’t watched yet, but this did not happen.
So many heads were shaking through their computer screens while Timberlake was on stage, most notably during the Prince homage.
Not Everyone Hated It
Ellen made no mention of the Prince segment upon heaping praise on Justin shortly after the performance ended.
Reese Witherspoon Also Liked It
No mention of Prince or the controversy here, either.
It’s Already a Meme
This is funny. But was humor really the goal here? JT should have maybe seen the memes coming when he made this decision.
Then There was This Kid
Timberlake danced alongside him to close the performance, even telling him to snap a selfie at one point. The kid wasn’t into it. Twitter took note.
There Was Also the Attire
Did Timberlake have a post-concert hunting trip planned? And what was up with that handkerchief?!?
What Did YOU Think?
Where would you rank this show among all-time halftime acts? Let us know!