Maroon 5 were met with quite a bit of backlash after agreeing to be part of this year’s Super Bowl halftime performance. After Travis Scott’s attempt to crowdsurf off the stage and the disappointment due to the lack of Spongebob, the overall vibe of the performance fell flat. Now it seems the uproar is continuing, but this time the focus lies on Adam Levine’s nipples and the controversy surrounding gender equality.
The year is 2004. Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson are giving an incredible Super Bowl performance that’s dazzling viewers and fans—until a “wardrobe malfunction” exposed Janet Jackson’s breast during the show.
Jackson was hit with immediate backlash and numerous consequences after the event. The vocalist also took a large hit to her career after the the performance, while Timberlake walked away without any repercussions.
Fast forward to this year’s halftime performance. Maroon 5 vocalist Adam Levine strips down to a bare chest and receives not so much as a slap on the wrist….
And people aren’t having it.
According to documentation obtained by the Hollywood Reporter on Friday, over 50 complaints were made to the FCC regarding Levine’s decision to remove his shirt during the performance.
Following this year’s Super Bowl and Levine’s nipple exposure, many took to Twitter to use #JusticeForJanet and demand gender equality when it comes to how male and female nudity is perceived by the FCC.
“I want him banned, just like they did Janet,” says one consumer from Idaho.
“Adam Levine showed both his nipplesby taking his shirt completely off. NFL/CBS/Maroon 5 should be met with twice the consequences as those that faced consequences of the 2004 “wardrobe malfunction”” adds another.
The FCC received over 50 complaints regarding the issue, all of which share the same request for equality.
“In 2004, CBS was fined $550,000 for airing what has become known as the “Nipple Slip”. In 2019, CBS aired Adam Levine removing his shirt exposing both nipples. This must be dealt with in a similar manner, or the double standard must be made public.”
Many compared the situation to the 2004 “wardrobe malfunction” and pointed out the unfair consequences (or lack thereof) given to each performer.
“I am insulted by the exposure of Adam Levine’s nipples during the Super Bowl half time show. Not because I am offended by the sight of another human’s nipples, but because of the hypocrisy that it did not spark an immediate apology from CBS. I thought we were trying to get past treating men and women differently in this country. CBS should immediately apologize and be fined.”
“It is extremely distasteful for Adam Levine of Maroon 5 to display vestigial male nipples on live television where any child can see these evolutionary leftovers. If the FCC punished Janet Jackson for showing her functioning nipples in 2004, they must immediately fine Adam Levine for displaying his vestigial nipples. The fine should also be doubled as Levine displayed double the nipple.”
Maroon 5’s controversial Super Bowl performance
The entire time leading up to the Super Bowl performance was filled with controversy. The NFL struggled to find other acts to perform with Maroon 5. The struggle was due to the boycotting of the NFL due to them blacklisting Colin Kaepernick for his on-field protests.
The NFL also canceled Maroon 5’s press conference at the Super Bowl. The statement said that the artists would “let the show do the talking.” However, many people do not believe it. They think it was solely for the band to avoid questions about Kaepernick.
Travis Scott partnered with the NFL to make donations to charity in exchange for his performance. Maroon 5 also made a donation, but they still defended their decision to do the show even after fans petitioned for them to drop out.
You can watch this year’s Super Bowl halftime performance, below.