Coldplay may have been the headliner of the Super Bowl 50 halftime show, but it was Beyoncé who stole the show and left us to physically pick up our jaws off the floor and continue about our business.
Taking to the stage just after Chris Martin brought out Bruno Mars and Mark Ronson for some “Uptown Funk,” Beyoncé and her fleet of dancers arrived to perform “Formation,” a brand-new track The Daily Beast called “a black power anthem for the masses.” For the occasion, Beyoncé turned to Dsquared2 to create a custom leather jacket with gold metal military details (as well as customized Christian Louboutin ankle boots). As the Internet was quick to point out, her uniform harkened back to the recognizable wardrobe of the Black Panther Party, as well as Michael Jackson’s 1993 Super Bowl performance.
In Dsquared2’s words: “We love Beyoncé and wanted to create something where she resembles a warrior leading her female posse who fall into formation.”
New York-based design house Zana Bayne — Beyoncé’s go-to for such leather looks — outfitted each of her dancers in custom-made garb, also Black Panthers-inspired.
Meanwhile Mars and his dancers all wore matching Versace black faux leather pants, shirts and plenty of gold chains.
It’s no coincidence the Black Panther motif coincides with the empowering message “Formation” emits, both in lyrics and in music video visuals. And with more than 100 million viewers tuning in, there’s perhaps no bigger stage than the Super Bowl for Beyoncé to use wardrobe to bring attention to her latest song’s powerful commentary — that is, until her just-announced “Formation” world tour kicks off in April.