Musical superstar Rihanna made headlines recently, as it was revealed the popular singer is set to headline the Super Bowl 2023 halftime show in Arizona.
The 34-year-old singer, known for hits like Pon de Replay, Umbrella, and Stay, was announced as the headline act by the NFL and new halftime show sponsor, Apple Music.
As of this report, she is the only performer set to take the stage, but previous headliners have been known to bring out special guests for performances during the show.
Since Rihanna has collaborated with many top musicians from various genres, it wouldn’t be surprising if she brought out some guest performers for her set.
One individual she’s collaborated with a few times is Kanye West, and the rapper may have been teasing the possibility that he’ll be one of Rihanna’s guests.
That brought a variety of reactions from fans, some of whom don’t want the hip-hop star anywhere near Rihanna’s halftime show.
Did Kanye tease Super Bowl halftime show appearance?
Anyone who’s been following Kanye on social media over the past year knows he’s been outspoken on a variety of topics, mostly to do with his situation with ex-wife Kim Kardashian, her former boyfriend Pete Davidson, and his children.
Kanye also expressed outrage towards companies, including Apple Music, and other celebs, such as Trevor Noah, the latter of which got him suspended from Instagram temporarily.
Following his suspension, he went quiet on social media, with Ye or his team removing all of his posts from his IG page. Since then, he occasionally surprises his millions of followers by sharing a post or two on his IG feed or posting something to his IG Story.
He took to his IG Story this past week to share a screenshot of an article from the UK’s Daily Mail with a headline indicating that Rihanna is “mulling over list of 50 possible guest artists” for her halftime show at Super Bowl LVII. Among the possibilities mentioned in the headline are Paul McCartney, U2’s Bono, and Kanye.
The @hollywoodunlocked Instagram shared a screenshot of Ye’s IG Story slide (below) where he’d erased all of his name except for “ye” and asked fans if he might “pop out” as one of the guest artists.
Fans and critics react to possibility of Kanye at Super Bowl
With @hollywoodunlocked posing the question about Ye to their followers, it had critics jumping into the comments who don’t want the controversial hip-hop star part of the show.
“No not Kanye. Please don’t ruin this show. Anybody, but Kanye,” one fan said in the comments.
“Please Ri RI not Kanye…we’ve all had about enough of him…he’ll only attempt to steal your shine,” one fan pleaded.
Some supporters also seemed to favor seeing Kanye take the stage, along with other guest artists.
“Ye is part of Riri’s legacy 🤷🏽♀️,” one fan commented about the potential for Kanye’s guest appearance.
“Kanye, Jay Z and Rihanna….3 black billionaire moguls on the stage, I love it,” one fan said, reacting to the possibility of Rihanna’s guest performers.
Controversies loom over potential Kanye appearance
Rihanna and Kanye have linked up on several massive songs during their careers. The trio famously appeared together on Jay-Z’s 2009 hit track Run This Town which also had some NFL controversy associated with it years ago.
In 2014, Hollywood Reporter revealed that CBS Sports pulled a segment featuring the song from its Thursday Night Football pre-game presentation in light of the Ray Rice domestic abuse scandal. Rice formerly played for the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens, who were featured in the season opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers at the time.
The song was to be part of a pre-game segment that featured actor Don Cheadle doing a voiceover. However, CBS Sports decided to remove the segment and went a different direction with their pre-game coverage.
Per Andscape, Rihanna, a domestic violence victim years before that, was upset by the move, feeling that she was being unnecessarily penalized.
That’s one of several songs that Rihanna performed along with Kanye. Another major hit was Kanye West’s All of the Lights in 2010, which also features Kid Cudi. However, Cudi was another of Kanye’s online targets in the past year, and the two have since ended their friendship and working relationship.
Other songs featuring Kanye and Rihanna include her 2012 track Diamonds and Ye’s 2015 song FourFiveSeconds, which also features Paul McCartney.
There’s plenty of controversy surrounding Kanye this past year, and that might be enough for those producing the Super Bowl halftime show to ensure he’s not associated with the event. He was removed as a Grammys performer earlier this year after his online attacks towards Noah and others.
A Change.org online petition gained steam earlier this year with many individuals against Kanye performing at Coachella due to his online harassment of Kim K, Davidson, and others. He eventually removed himself as a headliner for the show and was replaced by The Weeknd and Swedish House Mafia.
Even if Kanye doesn’t appear as one of Rihanna’s Super Bowl halftime guests, plenty of other talented artists could show up on stage. In addition to Jay-Z, other musicians she’s collaborated with have included Drake, Ne-Yo, Sean Paul, Nicki Minaj, Britney Spears, T.I., Eminem, and Calvin Harris.
Super Bowl LVII airs Sunday, February 12, 2023, on FOX.More: Kanye West, NFL, Rihanna, Super Bowl