With all the pomp and circumstance that goes into a Super Bowl broadcast, the actual football game itself takes a bit of a backseat. Sure, the football faithful can tell you exactly whose living room they were standing in when, say, the New Orleans Saints’ onside kick changed the course of Super Bowl XLIV. But when many viewers look back on Super Bowls past, they tend to think less about what happened on the gridiron and more about all the bells and whistles — the confetti, the commercials, and most of all, the halftime show.
So much focus goes into a Super Bowl halftime show that it tends to stick in your head more than where the game stands when both teams run into the locker rooms. Take last year’s Super Bowl 50, for example. When that game reached the halfway mark, the Denver Broncos had the upper hand on the Carolina Panthers 13-7, despite both running into turnover trouble in the first two quarters.
But what do people remember? Coldplay looking like the awkward guest at Beyonce and Bruno Mars’ kick–ass dance party.
It’s nice, for a change of pace, to look back on the actual football game that took place on the field. And not just on the stage that gets resurrected at the halfway point to keep viewing audiences glued to the tube. Here is a more sports-centric look at every Super Bowl halftime show since 2006.