Missy Elliott “hit-em-with-hee” last night at one of the best Super Bowl’s in the history of the great American pastime. But not everyone knew who the 90s/Aughts superstar was. They should have. Missy dominated her lane for a decade plus after storming Hip Hop’s male dominated barracks with quirky hits like “Supa Dupa Fly” and “I Can’t Stand The Rain.” But it was the mingling of her talents with Timbaland, Aaliyah, Puff Daddy and others along with bringing dance back to the fore that cemented her position. That’s not mentioning the awards. The VA native has earned five Grammy’s, three AMA’s, countless BET Awards amongst others. But her greatest moment of the decade may have been last night, where she swooped in to save Katy Perry from that shark dancer gone rogue. Hell, Spotify streams for M.E. grew 676 percent following the performance. Of course, no one could save Pete Carroll from himself but we digress. Here we give you five reasons how Missy saved the day and why it may have been Hip Hop’s greatest Super Bowl moment.
Perfect Blending of Pop and Hip Hop Without Cheese Factor
Previous Super Bowl halftime performances have featured rap artists within the harder leaning side of pop. Running down the list, one can look toward Nelly’s small part alongside Aerosmith, Britney Spears and N’ Sync in 2001 along with The Black Eyed Peas’ 2011 headlining performance. Then lets not forget Nelly and P.Diddy’s corner 2004 performance leading to Nipple Gate. It’s a well known fact that during her heyday, Missy ran the pop charts yet, earned critical acclaimed within Hip Hop for her genre pushing music. Though others have pushed the fusion between the two together, M.E. did it with a style that can’t be replicated to this day.
Proved That Veterans Can Still Hang
The last project Misdemeanor released was 2005’s The Cookbook which polarized many due to her decision to work with producers outside of Timbaland. Since then, a few loosies here and there besides 2012’s semi comeback singles “9th Inning” and “Triple Threat.” In most circles, anticipation is high for a new Missy album considering her 20 plus years and 43-years of age. Though rapper life spans are shaky, it’s about time for Hip Hop to go the way of Rolling Stones, Aerosmith or Bruce Springsteen. This may have been it’s first moment.
Can Lead To Even Higher Profile Rap Artists Headlining Future Super Bowls
The real MVP of the Missy Elliott performance is that folks might finally be ready to get more Hip Hop in their halftime show. Of course, Missy is not part of the gangsta-rap coalition that seemingly dominates the landscape, but that may also be changing. Acts like Kendrick Lamar, Lecrae, and others could easily fit into anyone’s good-kid paradigm. And of course there are the megastars like Kanye and Jay Z. Plus, who’s better for the Super Bowl than one Drizzy Drake?
The Bar Was Originally Set Low For Hip Hop
The last Hip Hop performance in the Super Bowl didn’t go so well. The Black Eyed Pea’s rolled out into Cowboy stadium looking stiff and uninspired, even with “I Gotta Feeling” streaming down through your television set. Then there was Nelly’s performance in 2004 along with P.Diddy, which didn’t send anyone combing through folks’ catalog looking for the next big Hip Hop superstar performer. Of course, we would trade all of those for Kendrick Lamar, Nas and Jay Z sharing a stage and Andre 3 Stacks teleporting in from Deep space, but we’ll take what we can get.
Saving Katy Perry From Super Bowl Infamy
Katy Perry’s Super Bowl performance was bordering on non-sensical after the Cheeto’s dress and popping it one time on the lap of Lenny Kravitz, but maybe she knew she had nothing to fear as Missy Elliott came out to save the day. When “Get Ur Freak On” came blaring through the speakers like fun and madness it shook the performer to her core, blazing the way for her to ride the “More You Know” star right out of the stadium and into your junk-food filled heart.
Andre Grant is an NYC native turned L.A. transplant that has contributed to a few different properties on the web and is now the Features Editor for HipHopDX. He’s also trying to live it to the limit and love it a lot. Follow him on Twitter @drejones.
Ural Garrett is an Los Angeles-based journalist and HipHopDX’s Senior Features Writer. When not covering music, video games, films and the community at large, he’s in the kitchen baking like Anita. Follow him on Twitter @Uralg.