Super Bowl National Anthem 2016: Twitter Reacts to Lady Gaga's Performance

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistFebruary 7, 2016

Lady Gaga sings the national anthem before the NFL Super Bowl 50 football game between the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
Julie Jacobson/Associated Press

Before the Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos could kick off Super Bowl 50 on Sunday, the spotlight was on Lady Gaga as she sang "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California.

Lady Gaga has sold out concerts across the world, won six Grammy Awards and most recently earned a Golden Globe for her performance in American Horror Story: Hotel. Yet, even after doing all of that, she was still humbled by getting to sing the national anthem before Sunday's game, per NFL Network:  

NFL Network @nflnetwork

"This is one of the highest honors of my career." - @ladygaga on singing #SB50 National Anthem https://t.co/YqilZKeFzm

Over the years, Gaga has built a reputation for wearing garish outfits. By her standards, her Super Bowl ensemble was a bit toned down—albeit still unique and striking. The NFL on CBS offered a good look:


Lady Gaga. Crushed it. #SB50 https://t.co/kD4tlbGv5E

For ESPN's Bomani Jones, the uniformly red design tied directly into the anthem:

El Flaco @bomani_jones

gaga looking like *the* rocket’s red glare/

It was a wonder Gaga managed to stay on her feet, given her choice of footwear, per SB Nation:

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SB Nation @SBNation

Let’s spend this commercial break talking about Lady Gaga’s shoes: https://t.co/Y5uqgzBrFR https://t.co/jEGq2YI4Uv

Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News reported the Levi's Stadium groundskeepers were having some trouble with the playing surface, to the extent they were having to make last-minute repairs following pregame warm-ups. Lady Gaga's shoes were probably those groundskeepers' worst nightmare.

The Sklar Brothers quipped Gaga—high heels and all—could still outrun at least one of the stars in Super Bowl 50:

The Sklar Brothers @SklarBrothers

Lady Gaga, more mobile than Peyton. #SB50

In terms of performance, Whitney Houston set the bar with her rendition ahead of Super Bowl XXV; every single anthem since that year has been measured against hers. Houston's is nearly impossible to top, and Bleacher Report's Mike Freeman argued Lady Gaga might have delivered the second best in Super Bowl history:

mike freeman @mikefreemanNFL

1. Whitney (Huge gap) 2. Lady Gaga. (Huge gap) Everyone else.

Sports Illustrated provided a replay of the anthem in full:

Prior to "The Star-Spangled Banner" and "America the Beautiful," the NFL honored the MVPs from the first 49 iterations of the Super Bowl. Among them was New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who was vociferously booed by the Levi's Stadium crowd.

Vice Sports' Mike Tunison argued that would make a better song to symbolize the United States:

Mike Tunison @xmasape

The new National Anthem is Tom Brady getting booed but Lady Gaga did a good job with that other song.

Social media was undoubtedly abuzz as a result of Gaga's effort, though PFTCommenter questioned whether tweeting during the national anthem is even appropriate:

PFTCommenter @PFTCommenter

Unfolowing everyone who tweets during the natonal anthem #disrepsectful

As with every Super Bowl, plenty of fans had some money on the line depending on the length of the national anthem. According to Odds Shark, Gaga hit the over:

OddsShark @OddsShark

Prop 1: The national anthem went approximately 2:21. OVER 1:57. #OSPropSheet https://t.co/4vp1g0AEEE

There was some minor controversy about what constituted the end of her song. RJ Bell of Pregame.com shed some light on the bone of contention:

RJ Bell @RJinVegas

Here we go: Bovada is paying UNDER on National Anthem, and BetOnline is paying OVER. Discrepancy on validity of Gaga's extra "brave" at end.

Bovada provided the final say on the matter:

Bovada Official @BovadaLV

#LadyGaga's National Anthem, from first note to the completion of the first 'brave', is settled officially at 2 minutes and 9 seconds.

Gaga's eye-catching, attention-grabbing style isn't for everyone. But she's undeniably a great singer, and her interpretation of the national anthem was a great prelude to Super Bowl 50.


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