Madonna breaks silence, rips M.I.A. over Super Bowl 'bird'
Madonna broke her silence Friday morning on the uproar that followed her Super Bowl XLVI halftime show, which was upstaged when fellow performer M.I.A. appeared to curse and gave the middle finger to the more than 110 million viewers watching.
Madonna said that she only learned of the antics after the fact -- and was none too pleased.
"I was really surprised," she told Ryan Seacrest during a call-in interview to "On Air With Ryan Seacrest." "I didn’t know anything about it. I wasn’t happy about it. I understand it’s punk rock and everything, but to me there was such a feeling of love and good energy and positivity, it seemed negative."
She added: "It’s such a teenager … irrelevant thing to do … there was such a feeling of love and unity there, what was the point? It was just out of place."
We'll pause while you recall the days when Madonna was the anti-establishment icon causing controversy ...
Back to the news:
Madonna, 53, was poised to go down in Super Bowl history for a glamorous, star-studded performance that many say ranked as one of the best Super Bowl halftime shows ever. Now the performance also goes into the history books as being marred by the vulgarity and rude gesture -- which happened so quickly they escaped many audiences. The word and gesture also slipped by NBC, which was too slow to catch them.
The fallout over M.I.A.'s actions pales in comparison to the uproar -- and record fine -- that followed Nipplegate. (You remember, the now-infamous 2004 halftime show featuring Justin Timberlake, Janet Jackson and Janet Jackson's nipple.)
Still, there seems to be an awful lot of radio silence about this "bird" flipping incident.
The Federal Communications Commission, which cracked down on CBS after Nipplegate, has declined to comment on whether it's conducting any sort of inquiry in the wake of the national flipping off, or whether it's even received any complaints. The NFL and NBC, which carried Super Bowl XLVI, have apologized. But they haven't answered questions -- such as those from the Los Angeles-based Parents Television Council -- or offered assurances about how they'll prevent this from happening again.
And M.I.A. herself? She appears to be, well, M.I.A.
She hasn't been seen from or heard from since Sunday, although her Twitter feed shows that she -- or someone with access to her account -- retweeted a post from Benjamin Bronfman. He's the son of Seagram heir Edgar Bronfman, father to M.I.A.'s child, Ikhyd, and if the New York Daily News is to be believed, main caretaker of the boy.
Bronfman's Tweet said: "its sad to see our media in such a state of unfounded gossipy nonsense when there are real problems in the world".
In recent hours, he has also Tweeted much support to M.I.A., including repeatedly calling her a "great" mom.
-- Rene Lynch
Twitter / renelynch
Photo: Madonna performs during the Super Bowl XLVI Halftime Show at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind. Credit: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images