J.Lo and Shakira's co-headlining halftime performance was so entertaining, high-energy and memorable that it took less than 10 hours for their halftime show to surpass last year's much-criticized Maroon 5 halftime in the number of YouTube views. "I've written repeatedly in the past about what a thankless gig the Super Bowl halftime show is," says Daniel Fienberg. "Most people are only paying attention to make fun of it and to complain about how Prince did it better. But if ever there were a year to make a risk-free appearance nestled between the commercials and football on TV's most-watched night of the year, it's this year, because the chances of anybody outside of the Adam Levine Extended Family looking back on 2019's Maroon 5 performance with anything resembling positivity is low. Most Super Bowls, you have to rise to the level of 'Slightly less good than Prince,' but for Super Bowl LIV, it was probably enough to be 'Slightly better than Maroon 5.' To their absolute credit, Jennifer Lopez and Shakira came far closer to the former than the latter." Fienberg adds that it didn't matter if there was lip-syncing: "That halftime show was just pure fun, unless you want to acknowledge that it's righteously and wonderfully political for two Latinx singers to have shared and dominated the stage on TV's biggest night, especially when one of them sang — or 'sang' — the chorus of Bruce Springsteen's 'Born in the U.S.A.' while draped in a magnificent Puerto Rican flag boa/robe."
J.Lo and Shakira's halftime displayed pride in their Latin roots and didn't hesitate to be political: The co-headliners "were out to defy the notion of their work, and the global populace they were said to represent, being reduced in any way," says Spencer Kornhaber. "This was an extravaganza that burst at its sparkly harness, and it would have been too much if every part weren’t dazzlingly done. Casually featured were the two Spanish-speaking rappers of the moment and maybe millennium: Bad Bunny (whose shimmering trench oddly fit the outer-space motif in the night’s ads) and J. Balvin (working psychedelic Nintendo-character leisurewear, as is his prerogative). They updated Cardi B’s Spanish/English classic of 2018, 'I Like It,' which itself updated a Spanish/English classic of 1967, 'I Like It Like That.' J. Lo’s family figured in (with her 11-year-old daughter, Emme, of viral singing fame), as did Shakira’s Lebanese heritage (including with immediately memed ululation). The stars shouted 'gracias' and 'thank you'; they sang a song to Africa; they flashed the flag of Puerto Rico. And they played politics."
J.Lo burned the halftime show to the ground -- and gave the Oscars the middle finger: "Exploding like a cannon-blast out of a fire torch, Lopez blazed across the Super Bowl Halftime Show stage, ensuring that her landmark year was punctuated not just with an exclamation point, but one blinking in blinding neon, so that the testament to her talent could be seen from space—which, arguably, it was Sunday night," says Kevin Fallon. "The energetic, dance-heavy set from Lopez and her co-headliner, Shakira—mesmerizing in her own right, if overshadowed by the scope of Lopez’s star power and her post-snub redemption narrative—seemed to pay tribute to the gig as a hallowed platform. More people watch the Super Bowl Halftime Show than anything else airing in the world in any given year, and the two Latin entertainers raised the level of their game to meet its stratospheric reach."