One politician's reaction to Justin Timberlake exposing Janet Jackson's breast remains surreal.

By Jimmy Traina
February 02, 2018

1. With Justin Timberlake performing at halftime Sunday, his infamous Super Bowl scandal involving Janet Jackson has been rehashed a lot the past couple of weeks. The focus is usually on the fact that Jackson took the hit while Timberlake came away unscathed. One thing that seems to have gotten lost over the years was the bizarre, over-the-top reaction of one politician.

New Mexico Representative Heather Wilson was really so ahead of her time. Her performance would've it in perfectly in our current era of Twitter outrage and a government run by a wacky reality show host. But back in 2004, Wilson took on "Nipplegate" with a passion that was hilarious, yet frightening. And when I say "took on," I mean, Wilson unleashed a speech about the damage Nipplegate did at a Congressional hearing. Yes, there was actually a Congressional hearing over Justin Timberlake ripping off part of Janet Jackson's shirt to expose a mostly-covered-with-a-weird-piece-of-metal breast for less than one full second. OH THE HORROR!

Here was the comical take from Wilson, who was going after Viacom, which owned CBS, the network that aired the Super Bowl that year:

"I should not have to use an NFL halftime show as a negative example to teach my children. And there are a lot of other parents who feel the same way. As a lawmaker, I want to know how something like this made it on to the show in a very scripted, rehearsed for weeks performance. And in the same way Enron highlighted unacceptable corporate behavior from a financial point of view and ethics in our corporate boardrooms, Viacom support of shock jocks and allowing tasteless Super Bowl programming is a nationwide entertainment industry scandal. You knew what you were doing. You knew what kind of entertainment you were selling and you wanted us all to be abuzz here in this room and on the playground in my kid's school because it improved your ratings. It improves your market share and it lines your pockets."

The best part about this insane lecture is that Wilson was shaking and on the verge of tears. You need to see the clip to actually believe it.

I'll always be grateful to Timberlake and Jackson for their work during Super Bowl XXXVIII because it led to that not-an-Onion-but-should-be-an-Onion clip of Wilson. 

On a total side note, Timberlake really should have Jackson join him as a surprise this Sunday. We would all be abuzz. (If Jackson isn't available, Justin wants to pull off another surprise that would go over big, he should have Britney Spears join him on a duet of "Cry Me a River.")

2. Jimmy Kimmel has given us a Super Bowl edition of "Mean Tweets."

3. ESPN's "The Two Bills" 30-for-30, on Bill Parcells and Bill Belichick, which debuted last night, was phenomenal. If you are a New York sports fan, it is an absolute must-watch. The highlight came at the end, when the duo couldn't hide their disgust for the Jets.

4. If you haven't seen it yet, last night's "Jeopardy!" was a total debacle when it came to the category, "Football." And Alex Trebek was a complete savage.

5. J.J. Watt is not happy with fruit plates across America.

6. Travis Kelce is the guest on this week's edition of "Off The Board." The Chiefs tight end talked about playing with new quarterback, Patrick Mahomes, explained what it's like to have a brother (Eagles OL, Jason) playing in the Super Bowl and handicapped some of the more bizarre Super Bowl prop bets. You can listen to the podcast below or on iTunesSoundCloud and Stitcher.​

7. When Super Bowl LII finishes on Sunday, NBC will air an episode of "This Is Us." Back in 2009, the show that got the coveted post-Super Bowl slot was "The Office" and the episode kicked off with one of the greatest scenes in the show's history.

The best of the Internet, plus musings by SI.com writer, Jimmy Traina. Get the link to a new Traina's Thoughts each day by following on Twitter and liking on Facebook. Catch up on previous editions of Traina Thoughts. And check Jimmy Traina's weekly podcast, "Off The Board," on iTunes, SoundCloud and Stitcher.

IN CLOSING: I give my Super Bowl pick and some prop bet locks on this week's podcast. Check it out.

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