The Super Bowl Halftime Solution: Metal!

No matter whether you thought they were good or bad, the Who certainly count as rock legends. And with another Hall of Fame member off the books, we’re running out of rock titans to headline the half time show of the Super Bowl. (And considering Sunday’s game was the most-watched television show ever, it’s certainly a high-profile gig.) Who else is left to perform before an audience of over 100 million in the United States alone?

Yesterday, we posed just such a question and offered up a number of big-time alternatives for booking next year’s game. Some felt on the money (Van Halen, Taylor Swift) while others seemed like the distant cousin of a long shot (Bob Dylan). We left the final vote up to you, and the results were somewhat surprising.

Of the more than 3,800 people who voted in yesterday’s poll (which is still open, by the way), 45 percent of the voters decided that Nine Inch Nails should be the entertainment between the halves of Super Bowl XLV (which will take place at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas). Trent Reznor certainly would be an interesting choice for the show, as nobody that abrasive has ever performed in that context. Plus, Reznor would be unable to play some of his biggest hits, as “Closer” and “Starf—ers, Inc.” would most certainly be off-limits. Still, you could make the case that a mini-set of “The Hand That Feeds,” “Hurt” and “Head Like a Hole” would be a strange but satisfying halftime program. Reznor probably wouldn’t go for it (and it’s doubtful the NFL would ever ask), but stranger things have happened.

Other top vote-getters included Van Halen (14 percent), AC/DC (11 percent) and Fleetwood Mac (seven percent). But the most intriguing ideas came in the comments to that poll, where readers reminded us of a few ideas that we had let slip (including the Eagles and the Police). In fact, one reader sent in the best idea we’ve heard yet.

“MTV, you have missed the obvious answer here,” wrote one commenter. “You heard their songs on replays. They are arguably the biggest band to emerge from America over the past 30 years. They can pack stadiums on their own, and have more hits than just about anyone on the list. That band is Metallica.”

Now that is an excellent idea. Metallica is pretty close to classic rock, and though their most recent work has tapped back into their thrash roots, they still have an entire catalog of heavy hits that, as the commenter points out, are already ubiquitous in sports arenas. Plus, the group lends itself to the sort of spectacle and pyrotechnics that are required of a massive television event such as the Super Bowl.

So consider this an official MTV Newsroom prediction: In 2011, when the New York Jets meet the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl XLV, Metallica will keep the crowd warm during halftime with “Fuel,” “The Day That Never Comes,” “Sad But True” and “Enter Sandman.” Consider that a long-odds prop bet for next year.

What do you think? Should Metallica headline the Super Bowl halftime show? Or should the campaign for NIN at SBXLV start now? Leave your thoughts in the comments!