Tim Winter of Parents Television Council suggested that had it not been M.I.A. who used the Super Bowl halftime show to shock America, it might well have been another person on stage – PTC said it was full of candidates to do the same thing. The organization wants NBC and NFL to take action against M.I.A.
Here is Winter’s full statement:
“NBC fumbled and the NFL lied because a performer known as M.I.A. felt it necessary to flip off millions of families. It is unfortunate that a spectacular sporting event was overshadowed once again by broadcasting the selfish acts of a desperate performer.
“Last week the NFL formally told the PTC – and the American public – that the Super Bowl halftime show would be ‘appropriate.’ Most families would agree that the middle finger aimed directly at them is not appropriate, especially during the most-watched television event of the year.
“The mechanism NBC had in place to catch this type of material completely failed, and the network cannot say it was caught off guard. It has been eight years since the Janet Jackson striptease, and both NBC and the NFL knew full well what might happen. They chose a lineup full of performers who have based their careers on shock, profanity and titillation. Instead of preventing indecent material, they enabled it. M.I.A. used a middle finger shamelessly to bring controversial attention to herself, while effectively telling an audience filled with children, ‘F– you.’
“A simple apology rings hollow after yet another slap in the face to families, especially when NBC has argued before the U.S. Supreme Court that it should be allowed to air all manner of indecent material at any time of day, even when children are watching.
“Either the NFL and NBC will take immediate steps to hold those accountable for this offensive material in front of a hundred million Americans, or they will feebly sit back and do nothing. The nation – and the PTC – is watching.”
RBR-TVBR observation: Interesting – the PTC commentary made no mention of FCC action against NBC and its affiliates. It asked that the programmers punish the talent, not that the FCC punish the programmers.
Frankly, as football fans, we have never understood the lavish production numbers that make up the modern Super Bowl halftime show. We’d rather see one of America’s excellent college marching bands – one picked from the host state or via some kind of national competition – rather than the star-studded but ultimately empty cotton candy extravaganza they throw at us every year.