Without any stagecraft, Maroon 5's halftime show was pleasant and inoffensive, says Kevin Fallon. "It was exactly like the experience of a Maroon 5 song playing on the radio: nothing you look forward to, but, in the end, you liked it enough, sure, you guess," he says. "But in 2019, and given the impressive, bar-raised modern history of the halftime show, fine enough is tantamount to disaster. More, with the show this year doubling as a political referendum, it hardly justified the injustice, let alone silenced the debate, that has raged for the last year over the league’s treatment of Colin Kaepernick, National Anthem protests, and the responsibility of athletes, artists, and fans to stand up for something—in this case, by sitting out." Fallon adds: "It’s instinctual to compare the show to past productions. Beyoncé put on a relentless, meticulously crafted song-and-dance spectacular unlike the Super Bowl had ever seen. Madonna, at age 53, literally cartwheeled through the most elaborate stage sets that had ever been built for halftime. Katy Perry entered on a 16-story lion and exited on a shooting star. Bruno Mars danced so hard, I got tired just watching. Lady Gaga reaffirmed once and for all that pop stars are among our greatest athletes. Prince was legendary. Maroon 5 stood still on stage, and one of them took off their shirt."