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As heard on TV: The Who's ho-hum halftime

The WhoThe Who on CBS - synergy at its finest. (REUTERS/Jeff Haynes)

Blame Janet Jackson.

Ever since her 2004 wardrobe malfunction, Super Bowl halftime shows have become veritable quilting bees - sedate, spectacle-free outings featuring classic rock stalwarts less likely to attract the attention of the FCC.

The Who, whose longtime association with Super Bowl host CBS’s “CSI” franchise practically makes them the network’s house band, seemed like a natural choice for a halftime act, and they neither disappointed nor thrilled.

After the jump, five totally random, apropos-of-nothing things we noticed during the Who’s performance.

1. Roger Daltrey now looks like an orthodontist from Boca Raton.

When did this happen?

2. Audience applause was conspicuously louder when the band played one of their “CSI” themes.

Anyone over the age of 25 has to find this embarrassing. And why is the not-really-relevant-to-crime-fighting “Baba O’Riley” the “CSI: NY” theme song, anyway? “The Seeker” (sadly neglected last night) would have been a better choice.

3. If you’re trying to decide how you feel about something, don’t look to Twitter, because Twitter can’t help you.

Last time we checked, opinion on the group’s performance was evenly divided. The consensus among older Twitterers: “This is how real rock and roll is played, young ‘uns.” The general feeling among younger Twitterers: “Isn’t this band, like, 97 years old? How are they not dead by now?”

4. We swear we weren't imagining it...

When Daltrey sang the “Won’t Get Fooled Again” lyric about “children at our feet,” the camera conspicuously pivoted to Pete Townshend, who was the subject of a child pornography investigation a few years back. Uncool, CBS cameraperson.

5. The Who smashed no instruments last night.

Also, unlike the Animal Planet’s concurrently running Puppy Bowl, their performance featured neither a scrappy little French bulldog nor hamsters piloting a tiny rodent blimp.

By Allison Stewart  |  February 8, 2010; 12:00 PM ET
Categories:  As heard on TV  | Tags: The Who  
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I'm a fan, but that was when there were just three players and Roger on vocals. Now with a few extra players on stage they still didn't sound that good. The lighting effects were cool is about the best I can say.

Posted by: tojo45 | February 8, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

It was pretty awful. I don't see why Green Day, who have become a semi-safe arena band, couldn't do the show at this point. Or just bring back Prince again, no one would complain that it's too soon.

Plus, one nice thing about Aerosmith sort of breaking up - no more renditions of Walk This Way at a Sporting Event/Awards show ever again. Hopefully.

Posted by: M__N | February 9, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Thank you, Allison, for the snark, the snarkiness, plus the snarkitude. Why do you bother to write about music when you essentially just put it down? Even when you like it you don't want to get caught liking it.

Posted by: ClarkKent1 | February 9, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Green Day? Seriously? Yeah, they did that one song at the season-opener a few years ago, but no way they could do a halftime show. Way too much profanity. I though the set was as good as they could do given they only had 12 minutes. At least it was just them and not a cast of thousands on the field.

FYI, "The Seeker" is a cover, so they aint doing that on TV. Way too many rights issues.

Posted by: EricS2 | February 10, 2010 2:01 AM | Report abuse

The Seeker is not a cover. You may be thinking of Summertime Blues.

Posted by: Miles_Standish_Proud | February 12, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Like you said, it wasn't great or disappointing. For proof that they can still bring it, search for their performance of Seeker from the Jools Holland show a while back. Rock.

Posted by: gfriday | February 13, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

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