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Janet Jackson Super Bowl

Janet Jackson Super Bowl

Janet Jackson Super Bowl

In many ways, Janet Jackson was the Super Bowl. From a halftime show that started a federal investigation, to a lawsuit over a mastectomy, to a song that silenced a nation, the world loved it. Although she had left the iconic group Rhythm Nation 1814 by that time, hearing her powerful voice brought the song right back.

RIGHT

A decade after the incident, former FCC chairman Michael Powell gave his first interview regarding Jackson's performance, saying Jackson was treated unfairly and the controversy, including his own reaction, was completely overblown. Powell stated, "I think we've been removed from this long enough for me to tell you that I had to put my best version of outrage on that I could put on. Part of it was surreal, right? Look, I think it was dumb to happen, and they knew the rules and were flirting with them, and my job is to enforce the rules, but, you know, 'Really? This is what we're gonna do?' ⁠" Powell also said the treatment of Jackson, who was lambasted for causing "an outrageous stunt", was unfair, and commented on Timberlake not receiving the same backlash. "I personally thought that was really unfair", he said. "It all turned into being about her. In reality, if you slow the thing down, it's Justin ripping off her breastplate." (Source: en.wikipedia.org)

More importantly, the idea denies Jackson her own agency. Ever since she released her monumental album Control, which she recorded right after kicking her Dad off her management team, Jackson has kept a firm grip on her creative projects. She spent the better part of the '90s defending her magnum opus Janet against sexist critics who mistook the album's intimacy for pornogrpahy. Jackson built her reputation on the principle that no man could tell her what to do and by denying Moonves in-person and on-air apologies, she maintained it. (Source: www.esquire.com)

APOLOGY

As the critic Jenna Wortham notably points out towards the end of Malfunction, no apology Jackson offered, either to herself or to Moonves, was going to stop the tornado of outrage that was sweeping across the nation. Misogynoir is simply too powerful an opponent. But by denying Moonves an apology, Jackson controlled her own position within the whirlwind. It was a stake in the ground—a position she can now reflect on and say “I did that” instead of “someone forced me to do that.” Justin Timberlake will never know that feeling.

More importantly, the idea denies Jackson her own agency. Ever since she released her monumental album Control, which she recorded right after kicking her Dad off her management team, Jackson has kept a firm grip on her creative projects. She spent the better part of the '90s defending her magnum opus Janet against sexist critics who mistook the album's intimacy for pornogrpahy. Jackson built her reputation on the principle that no man could tell her what to do and by denying Moonves in-person and on-air apologies, she maintained it. (Source: www.esquire.com)

Watching the singer’s plaintive apology video in the documentary, the blueprint she lays is clear: It’s the one followed by Morgan Wallen, Travis Scott and every celebrity in between who’s been caught in a bad situation. She was contrite and let her corporate cohorts off the hook. The only difference is that smartphones wouldn’t debut for another three years, so Jackson’s apology didn’t look 100% like a selfie. (Source: www.latimes.com)

Earlier this year, Justin Timberlake posted an apology on Instagram to both Britney Spears and Janet Jackson. (Source: www.radiotimes.com)

That phrase, now commonly applied to even the most garden variety nip-slip, was coined by Timberlake in an apology issued one week after the game. While accepting the Grammy for best male pop vocals, for “Cry Me A River,” he apologized for the Super Bowl halftime incident, describing what occurred as “unintentional.” (Source: www.si.com)

 

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