I’m not much of a football fan so the prestigious Superbowl was very much not on my radar until I heard the possible inclusion of SpongeBob in the conversation. Some months before, SpongeBob’s creator, Stephen Hillenburg had passed away from ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease, a neurodegenerative disease affecting brain and spinal nerve cells. Hillenburg was 57. A petition was made by mourning fans on Change.org requesting that the famous SpongeBob song “Sweet Victory” be performed at this year’s Super Bowl halftime show. It received over 1 million signatures and even instigated social media responses from the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the hosting stadium, and the ever-enduring pop group, Maroon 5, which was performing in the show.
Mercedes-Benz Stadium tweeted a GIF from the episode “Band Geeks” where “Sweet Victory” stems from and Maroon 5 included a short segment of SpongeBob in their preview performance video on Twitter. They were not hard confirmations to the appearance of “Sweet Victory”, but in our current social media landscape of fan influence on marketed events, these hints might as well be. And for sure, hopeful fans did in fact see SpongeBob…for about 5 seconds until the clip transitioned to a greenish meteor descending upon all their hopes and dreams. From the “wreckage” appeared, “True musical genius”, Travis Scott performing “Sicko Mode”. To say that the internet was disappointed is an understatement.
I don’t know how popular Travi$ Scott is (Yes, that’s his stage name spelled; he should at least be consistent and make the other S a dollar sign too.), but I know that if I were there, I think I rather have had that greenish glowing meteor kill me upon impact than listen to “Sicko Mode”. Originally, I was going to come up with a concise summary of the song’s meaning, but I have no idea. I think I would have more success accurately interpreting Paradise Lost while bordering on the edge of alcohol poisoning than producing a semblance of a critical analysis on “Sicko Mode”.
I don’t want to sound elitist (Everyone has different tastes, while others have a higher tolerance for trash) nor do I really care about “Sweet Victory” being performed at an event I was never going to watch, but falsely appealing to the request of fans of a recently deceased man makes me…I don’t know. Kind of sick. Or it might just be the song.