This Saturday, Geelong will face Sydney in the 2022 AFL Grand Final, in what will be an entertaining clash. But it’s the Grand Final entertainment which will provide a show within a show. 18-time Brit Award winner Robbie Williams and nine-time ARIA Award winner Delta Goodrem will headline the pre-game entertainment, while The Temper Trap will lead a star-studded cast in the first half-time show since 2020. So, in the lead up to the Grand Final, let’s have a look at some of the best…and worst of the AFL Grand Final Entertainment.
Worst: Dean Lewis and Tones and I (2019)
Both are talented Australian musicians, but their songs don’t suit the adrenaline needed to get ready for a Grand Final. Tones and I began her set with what seemed like a cryptic version of ‘The Kids Are Coming’, before performing her hit song of the year ‘Dance Monkey’. Dean Lewis then took to the stage performing two love ballads, which got the crowd in the mood…not! Luckily Paul Kelly saved the show from being an absolute disaster.
Best: The Killers (2017)
Before Jack Riewoldt joined them on stage post-game, The Killers killed it before the Tigers ended their 37-year premiership drought. Performing some of their greatest songs, they had the crowd up and about from the get-go.
Worst: Meatloaf (2011)
Do I really need to go into this? This video should do the talking.
Best: Lionel Richie (2010 Replay)
After a poor performance from INXS the week before, the AFL responded by booking Lionel Richie for the St Kilda and Collingwood replay. Despite a slower tempo to begin, Richie had fans on their feet by the end of his set.
Worst: Angry Anderson (1991)
Most notably known for the batmobile that Angry Anderson rocked up in, this was downright cringeworthy. The reactions of the other personnel on the ground sum up the performance. Last year’s Grand Final Entertainment saw the batmobile make a special appearance, 30 years after its debut.
Best: Powderfinger (2008)
These guys know how to put on a show. Despite the questionable decision to have people on stilts, it was the sound, and not the visuals that made this a rememberable show. The smooth transition between “(Baby I’ve Got You) On My Mind’ and AC/DC’s ‘It’s a Long Way to the Top’ which sealed its fate.
Worst: Almost all the 2020 AFL Grand Final Pre-Game Entertainment
The first ever night Grand Final should have provided for the biggest pre-game spectacle the league has seen, but instead we got something thar was mediocre at best. It wasn’t necessarily that the performances were bad, but the song selection was shocking, especially going into a Grand Final. Cub Sport nailed this on the head with their rendition of ‘These Days’ by Powderfinger, so did the DMA’s version of ‘Believe’ by Cher. This was all forgotten however when Wolfmother lead singer and guitarist Andrew Stockdale fired the crowd up with ‘Joker and the Thief’.
Best: Sheppard (2020)
In a tale of two halves, Sheppard blew their hometown crowd away with their half-time set at the same Grand Final. Singing hits ‘Coming Home’ and ‘Geronimo’, provided that electric atmosphere which was missed pre-game.
Worst: Ellie Goulding (2015)
You know you’re in for a shocker when the wrong song begins to play at the start of your set, which is exactly what happened to Ellie Goulding. Firstly singing ‘Love Me Like You Do’, most of it was difficult to hear, due to more technical issues. There were reports of Goulding lip-syncing during the performance, but these were quashed immediately.
Best: Tom Jones and Ed Sheeran (2014)
Two of the biggest names to rock the ‘G’, Tom Jones and Ed Sheeran were at their entertaining best during the 2014 pre-game show. Fans were even treated to a duet between the two of Prince’s classic ‘Kiss’.