Welcome to Outrage Watch, HitFix's semi-regular rundown of entertainment-related kerfuffles. Not feeling anxious enough already? Get your fix of righteous indignation below, and stay posted for outrage updates throughout the week.
Breaking news: “family values” types hated, hated, hated Beyonce's portion of this year's Coldplay-“headlined” Super Bowl halftime show. Luckily, many of them emailed the FCC with their complaints — and thanks to an Open Records Request by SB Nation we now have full access to their delicious rants. The majority of complaints take issue with the so-called “racist” undertones of the Black Panther and Black Lives Matter-referencing performance, which many claim promoted violence against police officers and white people at a “family-friendly” annual event where large men inflict traumatic brain injuries on each other for our entertainment. This very measured, cool-headed response from one concerned citizen in Fenton, Michigan is typical:
“After that half time show i would like to know how i can get back the money i spent on the get together i had not to mention my children was watching… all that game did was promote hate on white people, law enforcement and America!!!!!!! How is that even legal to have on the air… sick and tired of how racist black people can be towards white people and now on national tv, JUST SICK OF IT!!!!!”
Are those all the exclamation points you've got, sir or madam?!!!!!!!!!!! (For the record, “racist/racism” was the most common invective hurled at the performance with a total of 11 mentions; the runners-up were “appalling/appalled” and “disgusted/disgusting” with six mentions each.)
Oh, but why stop there? Here are a few other choice responses from all around this great country of ours (emphases mine):
Spring Hill, Florida:
“Beyonce was making racist hand jesters during her performance during the super bowl half time show. Our group will be keeping track of this complant.”
“I am disappointed that such a performance would be aired. Janet Jackson was reprimanded for her pastey. That was a personal “statement” in regards to how she “sees” herself. Beyonce made a militia type statement, with faux ammo and the imagty of a violent group. I find her inference scary, not at all entertaining. The police us looking to secure the spectators from terrorists and are insulted by Beyoncé making a performance statement about Black Lives Matter. ALL LIVES MATTER! Will she accept accountability if someone's death is a result of her dance? The Super Bowl halftime show is not a stage for her to politicize her interpretation of – hands up, don't shoot. That's extremely selfish. There seems to have been no forethought about consequences. Entertain when it's time to do so. Express your opinion where and when appropriate. The Super Bowl was not a venue for her to act out. Had I attended, I would demand a refund for the purchase if my ticket. I strongly believe she should apologize for THAT performance. As a person, I would strive to bring lives together. Display strength in a listening and caring manner. Exemplify patience and togetherness. Diversity should endorse differences, not aggravate differences.”
“NFL promoted and supported the participation of Beyonce Knowles that paid tribute to known hate groups, terrorist & murders while advocating violence against LEO's. Celebrating Black Lives Matter & the Black Panther party was in insult to Americans and LEO's all across America! The NFL banned other artist for a nip slip, but is praising a scantily clad twerking diva with her lack of diverse dance troupe outfitted in Black Panther outfits, blatantly hoisting the “black power fist”. Insulting Americans and had it been a white artist signing with the Confederate Flag or supporting the KKK, all hell would break lose!! Huge double standard, the NFL should apologize and denounce the half-time show, most of all apologize to LEO's!”
“My family and I are appalled at what was allowed to take place in the halftime show at the super bowl!! What was displayed was anti-American, Anti-Police, Pro-Black Panther, pornographic, anti-family and on and on! Someone should have to answer for the disgusting anti-family display! Appalling!!!!”
“Please look at this site and see what she sang about. I believe there should have been a parental warning as I was watching with my grandchildren and they asked me what she was singing about. When I looked it up, this is what I found. http://www.justjared.com/2016/02/06/beyonce-formation-full-video-lyrics-watch-now/”
Hammonton, New Jersey:
“Glorifying the black panthers by Beyoncé during the halftime show. During the super bowl, a family viewed program was absolutely disgusting!!! What message are you sending our youth? Go kill cops and a ” mega star” will honor you in 50 years?!?! I guess the network is ok with going along with a race baiting pop star who drops a new album and tour same day as she pays homage to a group of violent people who killed police officers… Way to keep the race war alive !!! Absolutely disgusting!!!!”
“Up until last night, I was a fan of Beyonce. I am complaining about her Super Bowl performance for 2 reasons. The first is that I thought her attire was inappropriate for a family event (specifically the fishnet stockings and garter). Why is it that all of the women were scantily clad and the men were not? This was a horrible thing for my young daughter to see. I also oppose the message of her song/performance in that I think it will push more people to be on a witch hunt for police officers. If the main halftime performer and the 2nd one (Coldplay and Bruno Mars) performed their hits, why did Beyonce get away with not performing one of hers? Thank you.”
You can read all the complaints here.