During this Sunday’s Super Bowl 53 Halftime Show with performances from rock band Maroon 5, Astroworld rapper Travis Scott and Outkast rapper Big Boi, singer Adam Levine grabbed attention by removing his tops layer by layer, and ending up shirtless by the end of his set.
Levine, who leads the rock band best known for their breakout 2002 album Songs About Jane and recent chart hits including “Girls Like You” with Cardi B and “What Lovers Do” with SZA, delivered a polished performance. Levine and his band started with their early hits, kicking off with “Harder to Breathe” before jumping into “This Love.” There was a brief cut to a clip of the cartoon SpongeBob SquarePants song “Sweet Victory,” following a popular petition to get the song performed at the Super Bowl.
But it was the halftime finale, with Levine singing Christina Aguilera collaboration “Moves Like Jagger,” that got audiences raising their eyebrows. Levine had already discarded an outer black jacket and a colorful bomber jacket, throwing a layer into the crowd. He finished things off by also removing his tank top, revealing a heavily tattooed torso. And viewers had plenty to say about his fashion choices — and ultimate lack thereof. In particular, some pointed out a double standard between the reactions to Levine and Janet Jackson. Jackson’s costume malfunctioned during her Super Bowl Halftime Show performance with Justin Timberlake in 2004, putting the story at the center of a prolonged moral and legal battle.
However, the NFL and Maroon 5 did end up canceling the traditional pre-show press conference for the headliners. “As it is about music, the artists will let their show do the talking as they prepare to take the stage this Sunday,” an NFL representative told PEOPLE about the decision, made earlier in the week.
Levine left a message addressed to both fans and critics on Instagram Sunday night (Feb. 3), alongside a photo highlighting a "One Love" light display.
"When we accepted the responsibility to perform at the SBHTS, I took out my pen and just wrote," Levine wrote. "Some of the words that came to me in that moment eventually made their way onto the incredible lanterns that flew high and low tonight. We thank the universe for this historic opportunity to play on the world’s biggest stage. We thank our fans for making our dreams possible. And we thank our critics for always pushing us to do better. One Love."
The note ended with an actual list of words Levine came up with: forgive, laugh, cry, smile, share, live, endure, embrace, remember, enlighten, preserve, inspire, sweat, fight, express, give, receive, elevate, climb, unify, fortify, soften, dance, scream, dream, educate, provide, inhale, exhale, persevere, stand, knee, overcome, love, listen.
Prior to the game, Levine spoke to only one outlet about the controversy surrounding the halftime show. "I'm not in the right profession if I can't handle a little bit of controversy," he said in an interview with ET. "It's what it is. We expected it. We would like to move on from it. And like I said earlier, speak through the music." The band canceled the usual pre-show Super Bowl conference.
See Levine's post-show Super Bowl post below.
The Patriots had only three points and 195 yards in the first half. They had 212 yards and 10 points in the second half.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick credited offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels for a second-half adjustment that finally got New England into the end zone.
“McDaniels made a great adjustment,” Belichick said. “We talked about that on the sideline. We went to a two tight end offense, but we spread them out. We were able to complete some passes to Julian [Edelman] and then to Rob [Gronkowski] at the goal line to score [on the next play]. It was really well executed. It was not something we had anticipated doing a lot in this game. We did it against Kansas City, but it was kind of right time, right situation. We had good protection to be able to make those throws. Tom [Brady] did a good job getting the ball to the open guy. That was a great throw he made to Gronkowski to get down to the 2-yard line.
“Josh McDaniels did an outstanding job of play calling and eventually finding things that worked and made some big drives for us.”
For three-and-a-half quarters Sunday night, the Tom Brady and the New England Patriots’ offense failed to get any traction against the Los Angeles Rams’ defense in Super Bowl LIII.
But Josh McDaniels saw something he could take advantage of and his adjustment worked to perfection.
Tied at three midway through the fourth quarter, McDaniels and the Patriots elected to go to a two-tight end set in order to get the Rams into their base 3-4 defense and attack it through the air. During the regular season, Wade Phillips’ 3-4 base defense was gashed through the air, giving up 7.2 yards per attempt and a two-to-one touchdown to interception ratio.
The adjustment worked to perfection.
McDaniels went big to get LA into its the 3-4 and then spread the Rams out and let Brady carve up them up in the middle of the field.
With the game tied at three, New England got the ball at its own 31-yard line with 9:31 to go in the game and McDaniels put the adjustment in and Brady immediately hit Rob Gronkowski for an 18 yard gain. Then, the Patriots ran the same play on two of the next three snaps, with Brady hitting Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman for 13 yards, then finding Rex Burkhead for 7 and finally connecting with a streaking Gronkowski for 29 yards down to LA’s 2-yard line.
Running back Sony Michel plunged in for the game’s lone offensive touchdown on the next snap and the Patriots won their third Super Bowl in five seasons, 13-3.
After the game, head coach Bill Belichick lauded McDaniels’ adjustments as the key to the win.
“Josh McDaniels made a great adjustment,” Belichick said, via Pro Football Talk. “We talked about that on the sideline. We went to a two-tight end offense, but we spread them out. We were able to complete some passes to Julian (Edelman) and then to Rob (Gronkowski) at the goal line to score (on the next play). It was really well executed. It was not something we had anticipated doing a lot in this game. We did it against Kansas City, but it was kind of right time, right situation. We had good protection to be able to make those throws. Tom (Brady) did a good job getting the ball to the open guy. That was a great throw he made to Gronkowski to get down to the 2-yard line.
“Josh McDaniels did an outstanding job of play calling and eventually finding things that worked and made some big drives for us.”
Gronkowski noted after the game that when McDaniels doubled down on the play call, he knew it was his time to shine.
“I knew it was going to come to me,” Gronkowski said, via NFL. “I just had a feeling. You know we ran the play like two plays before, kind of beat the guy, had a little leverage. McDaniels saw it, he repeated the play again. I knew it as going to come to me, Tom put it up there, I went and made the play. Just surreal.”
The star tight end also told the media that McDaniels put that play in on the spot and that it wasn’t part of the original game plan.
New England’s offense sputtered for the majority of the lowest-scoring Super Bowl in history, but McDaniels’ brilliant adjustment was enough to get the Patriots the sixth Super Bowl title of the Brady-Belichick era.
'Liam Neeson is canceled': Fans react to actor's story of urge for racist revenge
Actor Liam Neeson details a story about rape, racial revenge and a murder plot in an interview with Britain's, The Independent. USA TODAY
In a shocking new interview, "Taken" star Liam Neeson says he once sought revenge for a loved one's rape by searching for a black person to kill.
During an interview with Britain's The Independent, the Irish Oscar nominee-turned-action star revealed that when he returned home from an overseas trip and learned a loved one had been raped, he went looking for revenge.
“There’s something primal – God forbid you’ve ever had a member of your family hurt under criminal conditions," he said before launching into the never-before-heard story.
“She handled the situation of the rape in the most extraordinary way,” Neeson told the outlet. “But my immediate reaction was... I asked, did she know who it was? No. 'What color were they?' She said it was a black person.
“I went up and down areas with a (nightstick), hoping I’d be approached by somebody – I’m ashamed to say that – and I did it for maybe a week, hoping some ‘black bastard’ would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could – kill him.”
Neeson, now 66, looks back at the incident with shame and regret.
“It was horrible, horrible, when I think back, that I did that,” he says. “And I’ve never admitted that, and I’m saying it to a journalist. God forbid.”
He says the experience taught him a serious lesson: when overcome with such emotion, he needed to stop and ask himself, "what the (expletive) are you doing?"
He continues, “I grew up in Northern Ireland in the Troubles," referring to the decades-long strife between Catholics, who wanted to split from the U.K. and form a united Ireland, and Protestant loyalists who wished to remain. "I had acquaintances who were very caught up in the Troubles, and I understand that need for revenge, but it just leads to more revenge, to more killing and more killing, and Northern Ireland’s proof of that. All this stuff that’s happening in the world, the violence, is proof of that, you know. That primal need, I understand.”
"He declined," Michallon noted. "But as Neeson said, the story has now been told for the first time. Perhaps that’s enough."
The Independent also published a companion op-ed piece by an editor of color, Kuba Shand-Baptiste. She writes, "I’m glad Neeson was so forthcoming about this story because it has shed light on a phenomenon that too few understand."
The actor's story contains a bigger lesson than stopping oneself and asking, "What the (expletive) are you doing?" she writes.
"I'd argue that there’s something even bigger to glean from all of this. Whether we like to admit it or not, racism has and will continue to have a far deeper psychological impact on society than many of us realize."
Twitter users weren't as understanding – let alone forgiving.
"You just asked what colour were they? I don't care how sorry you are, Liam Neeson, that is disgusting," wrote @HannahAlOthman.
"Would Liam Neeson have that same energy if the attacker was white?" asked @reecestweetz.
@NeferKira said Neeson still doesn't get it: "He still doesn’t realize what he was doing was racist lmao he just thinks revenge isn’t worth it. He still thinks killing any black person would be revenge for a specific black man raping his friend."
A few commenters tried to look at the story in a wider context.
@elenimacx urged other Twitter commenters to "read full Liam Neeson interview not just headline."
"This is what white, toxic masculinity looks like," wrote @Gaohmee. "I am extremely wary of men who are more outraged about the pain of a rape survivor than the victim themselves, especially when reverting to violence. I’m glad Neeson sees his mistake at least."
"That Liam Neeson interview is just so saddening (and yes, still racist)," @AyoCaesar chimed in. "It reinforces the idea that people of color, and especially black men, are collectively responsible for the misdeeds of one. And that when a woman is sexually violated, it's a man who is left truly wounded."
@ZodMagus was skeptical about Neeson suffering significant career damage: "Nothing will happen to Liam Neeson. He's not on social media so the social media outrage won't work. We just need to not support his art for the foreseeable future 🤷🏿♂️🤷🏿♂️ unfortunately that includes Widows."
@aliciaadejobi spoke for a number of disappointed fans when she wrote, "Never thought I'd have to cancel Liam Neeson but... here goes. How he ever thought he could say this without consequence is mind-boggling."
Monday marks the 106th anniversary of the birth of Rosa Parks, who in 1955 refused a Montgomery, Ala., bus driver’s order to move to the back of the bus and give up her seat in the whites-only section. Parks was arrested, which sparked a boycott of the Montgomery bus system and made her a powerful symbol of the struggle for equality.
That wasn’t the end of it though. She knew he was a Southerner, so she had made him a breakfast of eggs, grits and sausages, just as a Southerner would like.
What he didn’t know yet about her was that she was a vegetarian. That’s something he discovered with his first bite of meatless sausage. He managed to choke it down. Barely.
She just kind of smiled, he said — a smile that soon became familiar to him.
In 1994 he volunteered to install a security system in Parks’ home in Detroit after she was attacked there by a young man demanding money.
That eventually led to him becoming a bodyguard for Parks for the next few years, during which he made frequent trips from his home in Jacksonville to wherever she was traveling next, from Florida to Alaska.
He wore a bulletproof vest and was heavily armed in this duties, for which he volunteered. “I told them, I can’t charge Rosa Parks,” he said. Eventually, the Rosa and Raymond Parks Foundation ended up paying his expenses for travel.
They became friends, and often sneaked away from official events; she liked to walk and go to parks. He even took her fishing. He documented much her life — and the memorial services after her death — with a camera he carried everywhere.
Parks had moved to Detroit following her arrest after she and her husband lost their jobs and faced death threats in Alabama.
She lived simply there, in a modest apartment. “A bank account full of nickles and a basement full of plaques,” Kerrin said.
She sometimes spoke to him of that day in Montgomery in 1955, describing it as a breaking point. “She said she was just tired of the humiliation and the injustice that had happened,” he said, “so she refused.”
She died at 92 in 2005, after which she became the first women to lie in honor in the Capitol Rotunda in Washington, D.C. Ceremonies also marked her passing in Detroit — where a young politician named Barack Obama was among those who spoke — and in Montgomery.
Kerrin was there for each event, guarding her coffin: His work, he says, was not yet done.
As a former police officer, he stresses how revered Parks was by police officers, of all races, across the country.
That’s reflected in the photos he took of her life and her funeral services, which often feature law enforcement officers. He’s donated them to the National Law Enforcement Museum in Washington and has also given photos to the Library of Congress.
Working with Parks and doing security work for the Atlanta police department gave him the chance to interact often with the mighty and the rich.
“I have never been impressed by any celebrity, any president,” he said. “Only her. She would speak to you the same way she would speak with presidents.”
Matt Soergel: (904) 359-4082
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Troy University’s Rosa Parks Museum is celebrating the Civil Rights icon’s birthday!
Monday would have been Rosa Parks’s 106th birthday. The museum is offering free admission today, along with special activities and a birthday cake!
Parks, often referred to as the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement, died in October 2005 at the age of 92. She’s known for her Dec. 1, 1955 arrest for refusing to give up her seat on a Montgomery city bus to a white man. That led to the 382 day boycott of the city’s buses by African Americans. The boycott ended on Dec. 20, 1956, after the United States Supreme Court upheld the lower court ruling that declared segregated bus service unconstitutional.
The museum downtown Montgomery is a year-round celebration of the life of Rosa Parks and the impact she had on our country. The events planned today include special music, and story times for children.
The Rosa Parks Museum is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Justin Timberlake watches Super Bowl at Winnipeg’s Granite Curling Club
JT brought sexy back Sunday to Winnipeg’s coolest club – the Granite Curling Club.
Global News has learned more than 100 of Timberlake’s crew, along with the musician, took over the curling club to try their hand at the sport before sitting down to watch the Super Bowl.
However, there were no pictures allowed. Timberlake’s security team wouldn’t allow cameras inside the event.
The pop superstar is performing at Bell MTS Place Monday night for his Man of the Woods tour. Tickets for the show are available at Ticketmaster.
Timberlake performed at last year’s halftime show at the Super Bowl.
Justin Timberlake holds Super Bowl watch party at Winnipeg curling club: source
One of music’s top superstars was in Winnipeg Sunday night where he took in football’s biggest night at a familiar spot.
Sources have confirmed to CTV News that Justin Timberlake was at the Granite Curling Club on Sunday for a Super Bowl viewing party.
Timberlake and a large group reportedly rented out a room at the club on Granite Way to watch the New England Patriots defeat the Los Angeles Rams.