Adam Levine’s nipples were front and centre during the “super boring” halftime show at Sunday’s Super Bowl, angering many fans who compared the appearance of the eventually shirtless Maroon 5 frontman’s areolas to Janet Jackson’s infamous “nipplegate.”
Levine ripped off his shirt shortly into Maroon 5’s set, exposing his tattooed covered chest, and subsequently, his nipples. Both of them.
Here’s a look.
Levine’s televised tatas “outraged” many viewers, drawing comparisons to Jackson’s infamous 2004 nipple exposure during the halftime show. During her performance, Justin Timberlake made a surprise appearance to perform a duet with Jackson. Timberlake pulled at Jackson’s top, briefly exposing Jackson’s right breast.
Viewers were quick to point out how “hypocritical” Levine’s shirtless performance was after Jackson faced severe backlash and punishment.
“I’m sorry but Adam Levine should get the same grief as Janet did for showing us his unclothed nipples,” reads a tweet. “More specifically, this should prove how absurd, hypocritical, racist and sexist that puritanical hysteria over Janet’s boob really was.”
“How come Adam Levine gets to show his nipples and Janet Jackson doesn’t,” Vivian Ho questioned.
“Where’s the #nipple outrage? @JanetJackson shows one and it a state of emergency. @adamlevine shows two and everyone is all #doublestandard,” Jody Vance said.
The U.S. Federal Communications Commission fined CBS, which aired the 2004 Super Bowl, over $500,000 over the halftime “Nipplegate.” Jackson was allegedly blacklisted from radio and television for a better part of a year, while Timberlake carried on with his career with very little pushback.
“This country should have a serious chat about why Adam Levine’s nipples are, uh, apparently “acceptable” on TV but Janet Jackson was shamed and blacklisted for something she didn’t even do,” Charlotte Clymer tweeted.
“Wait a damn minute!! Janet Jackson show’s a tiny bit of nipple, and all hell breaks loose. He takes off his shirt and nothing?!! What??!!!! I’m outraged!” reads another comment.
“WHY CAN ADAM SHOW HIS NIPS BUT JANET CAN’T,” Kaitlyn Bristowe asked.
“Super Bowl halftime nipple rules feel inconsistent,” Katie Nolan declared.
The New England Patriots went on to beat the Los Angeles Rams 13 – 3 to win Super Bowl 53 in Atlanta.