The 10 Best Big Game Halftime Shows Ever in GIFs

As we get ready to see what Coldplay and Beyonce have in store for us this year, let’s look back at some of the best halftime performances in GIFs.

The Odd Couple

In 2014, the halftime show featured Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. While the pairing may have seemed unlikely at first, the diverse musical styles gave the show broad appeal and attracted 115.3 million viewers, the most watched halftime ever.

Crazy in Love with Beyoncé

Beyoncé’s halftime show was so big that it was rumored to be the cause of a power outage in the New Orleans’ Superdome during the 3rd quarter of the game. Sick dance moves? Check. Destiny’s Child reunion? Double check. All-female backing band that included an electric guitar shooting fireworks? You betcha.

OMG, It’s Usher

In 2011, the Black Eyed Peas were at the pinnacle of their pop stardom and headlining the halftime show at Cowboy Stadium in Dallas, TX. The Peas’ performance was widely panned with the exception of a cameo performance. Usher swooped in and saved the day with his performance of “OMG.”


During this show, Bruce Springsteen proved he is not only a national treasure of rock, but that at 60 years old, he is still the king of the crotch slide. Ever the ground breaker, Springsteen decided to give the camera person an interesting angle on his performance.

Purple Reign

Two years before the infamous crotch slide, another artist put his prowess on display during the big game in Miami. In the middle of a thunderstorm, Prince undeniably rocked that stage with covers of Foo Fighters and Jimi Hendrix songs as well as some of his own hits like “Let’s Go Crazy” and an epic guitar solo to “Purple Rain.” But, by the end of the performance, Prince seemed more concerned with rocking himself than anything else.

Britney, Britney, Britney

Sometimes awkward can be good. Enter Aerosmith, Britney Spears, N’ Sync, Mary J. Blige and Nelly at the big game in Tampa, Fl.  The whole crew got onstage to perform a cover of Aerosmith’s classic “Walk this Way,” which, at the time was a little painful to watch, but has since gone down in epic performance lore.

A Fitting Tribute

Just months after the 9/11 attacks, U2 took to the stage at the Superdome in New Orleans, LA, to perform a tribute the victims. The Irish rockers played “MLK” while the names of those we lost that day were projected on a giant screen. The band closed with an emotional version of “Where the Streets Have No Name” during which Bono opened his jacket to reveal the American flag in its lining.

Paul McCartney

After the infamous wardrobe malfunction with Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson, the NFL booked an artist who is not only revered by people of all ages around the world, but who also presented a less than 10 percent nipple risk. Sir Paul McCartney did not disappoint as the living legend performed hits such as “Live and Let Die,” “Drive My Car” and “Hey Jude.”

When the King Did His Thing

In 1993, Michael Jackson basically invented the halftime show spectacular. His performance at the Rose Bowl Stadium n Pasadena, CA, significantly raised the bar for future performances. This was before most of his scandals and financial woes, when MJ was still the King of Pop. In less than 15 minutes, there was moonwalking, pyrotechnics, a choir made up of 3,000 children, and of course, vents blowing steam thorough his white cotton shirt and long hair.


Daria Meoli is a writer living in New Jersey. She loves running, spinning and yoga, but her favorite workout is chasing her kids.