Rihanna, ‘shock visitor’ ship excellent Super Bowl halftime present

There are a couple of treasured folks on this world who’re diamonds. They’re the sort of people who find themselves so compelling that you may’t look away when the sunshine hits them. And even when it doesn’t, you understand they’re nonetheless shining, emitting their very own gentle supply from inside. 

Rihanna is a kind of folks. 

“You and I, you and I, we’re like diamonds in the sky,” she sang as she ended what would instantly turn out to be a legendary Super Bowl halftime present. Rihanna stood on a platform rising up excessive above the sector of Arizona’s State Farm Stadium. She appeared like she was alone. 

But she wasn’t. 

The “surprise guest” she had teased in an interview with Nate Burleson? It was her unborn little one, as her rep confirmed on Sunday night time

So, Rihanna not solely carried out solo for the primary time in seven years, she did so on the largest stage the world has to supply, and she or he did it pregnant. It was precisely a 12 months to the day that she introduced she was pregnant together with her first little one. 

Even simply typing that out I’ve chills. It’s exhausting sufficient for girls to succeed in the purpose the place they will carry out the halftime present by themselves, however to take action pregnant? It’s an unfathomably massive deal. 

Moreover, Rihanna killed it. She captivated in a putting pink outfit that she wore your entire time. That’s proper, no fancy wardrobe adjustments and no appearances from celeb artists. Just Rihanna up there, surrounded by dancers who appeared like they had been carrying a mix of a hazmat’s and astronaut’s swimsuit. She didn’t dance a lot (which I’m assuming was to guard her child), however it was nonetheless not possible to take your eyes off her. 

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For 13 minutes, we had been residing in a futuristic, dystopian universe the place Rihanna was our overlord and every little thing was going to be OK. 

I additionally can’t overstate how good she sounded: Her voice got here from the deepest components of her soul. The present itself was clean and satisfying. The camerawork was modern, with overhead and monitoring pictures that stored the main target squarely on Rihanna and the expertise she has honed over the course of her life. The total factor was mesmerizing, simple and every little thing we got here for — subtly electrical.  

Like many millennials my age, Rihanna was the soundtrack to my life by highschool, school and my 20s. Her music is an emotional time capsule at this level, since she hasn’t come out with an album since 2016’s “Anti.” That file — and most of her others — remains to be in my common listening rotation, however every track is frozen in time, linked to the reminiscences I made after I heard them for the primary time. 

And I didn’t fairly notice that till Sunday night time. To see Rihanna performing, lastly, after so a few years, unearthed all of these moments and emotions linked to her songs. I used to be shocked to search out myself choked up. They had been the identical songs I remembered, however the music — just like the artist herself — advanced as she sang them once more. 

In a 2015 interview, Rihanna stated she was nonetheless searching for a person who wasn’t threatened by her energy. 

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She appears to have discovered him in her accomplice and the daddy of her kids, fellow musician A$AP Rocky. Rihanna is now, like most of us her age, in a wholly totally different period from the time when she recorded these songs. She’s grown up with us. 

And she is aware of who she is. She opened with “B—- Better Have My Money,” an apt track for an unpaid present. In addition to that and “Diamonds,” she sang “Where Have You Been?,” “Only Girl in the World,” “We Found Love,” “Rude Boy,” “Work,” “Wild Thoughts,” “Pour It Up,” “All of the Lights,” “Run This Town” and “Umbrella.”

Her efficiency jogged my memory — although this reality is tough to overlook — that there is no such thing as a such factor as a foul Rihanna track. Her setlist consisted of banger after banger. It was pure gold coming from one of the crucial well-known ladies on the planet who has managed to guard her privateness and stay elusive. There is nobody like her. 

Earlier this week, I ranked the highest 10 halftime reveals of all time. And I stated that quickly, the record could be out of date, as a result of Rihanna was positive to upend it. 

She did. She gave me chills the best way Prince — the very best to ever do it — did. Both artists have a relaxed, quiet confidence that claims, I don’t need to show something to anybody, as a result of I’m so clearly in contrast to anything you will have ever seen.

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The undeniable fact that she did it pregnant? Words fail me. To quote the girl herself, “that was quite a show.” She shone brighter than she ever has — a diamond, certainly.

Charlotte Wilder is a normal columnist for FOX Sports. She’s honored to symbolize the continually uncared for Boston space in sports activities media, loves speaking to sports activities followers about their emotions and is happiest consuming a hotdog in a ballpark or nachos in a stadium. Follow her on Twitter at @TheWilderThings.

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