Out of the fantastic moments of Shakira and Jennifer Lopez’s Super Bowl LIV Halftime show (and there were plenty), following the epic conclusion of the Feb. 2 extravaganza, there was one moment on the tip of everyone’s tongues: Shakira’s tongue! During the show, the “Hips Don’t Lie” star leaned into the camera, gave a “Yi-Yi-Yi-Yi-Yi” yell that came off….well, not as she intended. Yes, it was memorable, but this is 2020, and a moment like that was made for the Internet. It wasn’t long before this moment became the meme of the 2020 Super Bowl.
Update: As some Twitter users were quick to point out, what Shakira did with her tongue is called a zaghrouta, a traditional Arabic expression of joy. The call, according to the Washington Post, has a long-standing cultural presence’ in countries such as Syria, Jordan and Lebanon.” It also is referenced during the Carnaval de Barranquilla in Shakira’s hometown in Colombia. It’s also a motion close to Shakira’s heart. She is half Lebanese (she was born Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll), and the move was a way to honor her heritage.
Everyone put Shakira’s tongue to good use. “Me sitting down to seal a whole stack of mailing envelopes.” “My cats, when I put out a can of soft food.” “the turkeys before Thanksgiving.” “Me int he bathroom mirror at the bar.” “Me watching football players wrestling each other in spandex during the Super Bowl even though I can’t tell the difference between a touchdown and a home run.” Others compared it to Sponge Bob (because everything can be related to Sponge Bob.)
Ahead of the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime extravaganza, Shakira and JLo did their best to get fans hyped up without giving away all the surprised they had in store during the big game. “It’s a lot of energy. It’s very entertaining. There are heartfelt moments. I think we run the gamut. It’s packed with a lot of awesome moments,” Jennifer said during a joint press conference on Jan. 30. She probably didn’t think that Shakira’s tongue would be one of them.
My cats when I put out a can of soft food pic.twitter.com/Pan88utRPE
— Zack Bornstein (@ZackBornstein) February 3, 2020
— Mrs Clause’s Play Boy ❄️☃️ (@DoctorRabbit3) February 3, 2020
— Martini (@av_martini) February 3, 2020
She also noted how this Super Bowl is a moment for women to shine. “The two teams that are playing are run by women, then you have two women headlining the halftime show. — That statement alone is empowering to me,” she said, explaining, “When I think of my daughter and all the girls around the world — to have two Latinas doing this, I’m very proud to put forth that message.”
As for Shakira, this performance hits close to home. “It’s going to be on my birthday,” she said during an Oct. 2019 episode of Apple Music’s Beats 1, noting that she turns 43 today. The halftime show also crosses an item off of Shakira’s bucket list. “I’ve always wanted to perform at the Super Bowl. I think it’s like the holy grail of the entertainment industry. It’s a sports event, but it has huge relevance for us artists, and I think it’s going to be fantastic. And I’m going to be celebrating my birthday with 100 million people.”
Before it all went down, JLO shared a behind-the-scenes shot of rehearsal where she wrapped her arms around her Halftime co-star. “So excited to share the stage with you tonight @Shakira!” she posted to Instagram. “Let’s show the world what two little Latin girls can do. #LetsGetLoud #GirlPower #SuperBowlLIV #SBLIV.”