Missy Elliott's guest appearance during Katy Perry's halftime show was easily one of the highlights of the Super Bowl tonight. Some outlets, like Gawker, have gone so far as to declare Missy the "best part" of the performance, and Pitchfork even gave her top billing in their write-up. Needless to say, the hip-hop legend won everything tonight, but, to me, the victory feels bittersweet.
Don't get me wrong -- Missy absolutely destroyed "Get Ur Freak On," "Work It" and "Lose Control" on Sunday (Feb. 1). She put her thing down, flipped it and reversed it without missing a beat, momentarily erasing the past 10 Misdemeanor-less years since The Cookbook dropped.
But, that's the thing. It has been 10 years since we've gotten a new album from Elliott -- 10 years that we've spent appreciating "Get Ur Freak On," "Work It" and "Lose Control" (and "The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)" and "Pass That Dutch" and "Gossip Folks" and...). We're very familiar with the classics by now.
I understand that Missy's semi-hiatus over the past decade was largely related to her battle with Graves' disease. But as I watched Missy own the stage at the halftime show tonight, a part of me was left yearning for another flawless track to add to that nearly peerless back catalog.
Last August while promoting his Jimi Hendrix biopic, André 3000 told The New York Times that "sometimes nostalgia is a cage." I don't want Missy's talent to be trapped by our nostalgia. I don't want her to be relegated to a display case, whipped out every now and then when we want to get down but never appreciated as a living, breathing, contemporary artist.
Missy is more than just a #classic #hiphop reblog on Katy's super-cute shark and shooting star-laden Tumblr dash, and she still has the power to change the game. Whenever she feels ready to release her long-delayed seventh studio album, we will be ready.