It was February 1, 2004, and the XXXVIII (38th) Super Bowl. The half-time performers were Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake and nothing would have predicted what CBS was going to inadvertently allow on television screens nationwide. An accidental slip of Justin Timberlake’s hand resulted in one of the most shocking wardrobe malfunctions of all time (well, in America at least). Every year, the Super Bowl game plays, the half-time performers take center stage and talk of Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction surfaces.
Now that we have social media platforms such as Twitter, the malfunction is being remembered, recognized, and even honored in peculiar ways. Not only is it remembered, but it is also a means of protest as people point out that Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake were not treated equally following the accidental mishap that for all intents and purposes was his fault. You’ll find that the hashtag #JanetJacksonAppreciationDay is trending on social media.
Though many people remember Janet for the wardrobe malfunction, fans have launched the hashtag to counteract the negative publicity that left Jackson in a whirlwind of backlash that she did not deserve.
It’s also a time where her fans celebrate all of her accomplishments and just remind everyone not to focus on the mishap that she had no control over, but to honor her for her talents.
— Damon (@geminimoon) February 3, 2019
One of the most immediate and notable fallouts from the Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction was that both Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake were booked for the Grammys. Jackson was even slated to pay tribute to Luther Vandross.
After the backlash hit, Janet Jackson was uninvited to the Grammys yet Justin Timberlake attended. It became clear that Janet Jackson was being punished for something that was not her fault.
Today things might be handled differently. If the wardrobe malfunction occurred ten or even twenty years later, we can safely assume Janet wouldn’t face the repercussions she did. However; times were different back then and there is no doubt that when Viacom was expected to pay substantial fees it was Janet Jackson who ultimately paid the price.
Did you see the Super Bowl half time show with Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake? Do you remember its aftermath? If so, do you participate in Janet Jackson Appreciation Day and do you use the hashtag #JanetJacksonAppreciationDay?