Fans who were excited about the all-star ASL interpreters during Sunday’s Super Bowl game were left wildly disappointed as they were introduced and then virtually ignored on the broadcast. Marlee Matlin was among those “shocked” and disappointed by the decision.
The only ASL moment really spotlighted came before the team introductions when Andra Day took to the stage to perform “Lift Every Voice and Sing.” She was accompanied by actor and choreographer Shaheem Sanchez, who did get a brief moment of screen time. Sanchez also signed the Halftime Show.
However, despite introducing and showing the ASL interepreters for Post Malone’s “America the Beautiful” and Reba McEntire’s national anthem — actress, model and dancer Anjel Piñero, and CODA star Daniel Durant, respectively — not one single moment of their ASL performances made it to air.
“I am absolutely SHOCKED at @CBS for introducing the Deaf performers at today’s pregame #SuperBowl and then not showing even one second (or more) of their performance… as has been tradition for the last 30 years. WHY!?,” Matlin posted to X (formerly Twitter).
The Oscar-winning actress, who is deaf herself, is no stranger to the ASL experience at the Super Bowl. She accompanied Garth Brooks back in 1993 when he performed the national anthem at the big game.
The ASL performances were available to watch in their entirety online, with CBS Sports offering a special live stream for that as they have in past years, per The Hollywood Reporter.
Perhaps that’s something they could have announced on the broadcast, or why not offer a picture-in-picture ASL experience for inclusivity? According to at least one follower on social media, a time delay on the stream was problematic, too.