The World Cup has only just started, and there's already some controversy. Thankfully, the drama is happening outside of the matches, as Fox is apologizing for a middle finger flown towards a camera during the opening ceremony. The finger belonged to singer Robbie Williams, and managed to slip past America's typically stringent censorship technology and to the eyes of all Americans watching the performance.
Robbie Williams' middle finger came during a performance of his song "Rock DJ," after he added a line "but I did this for free." Williams, whose last post on social media was a statement talking about how happy he was to be performing at the event, has not offered a reason behind the gesture. Fox said the moment was unplanned and has done a solid job at keeping the moment off the web since its airing, although it's always hard to get rid of something from the web once its happened:
Williams may not have an explanation for his gesture, but fans have speculated the singer's actions were tied to criticism he had received to accepting the gig. Critics apparently accused Williams of selling his soul and taking money to perform for Russian President Vladimir Putin, despite heavily criticizing the leader in the past. The theory would explain why Williams added the additional line to his song, as well as the middle finger as it would appear to say Williams was responding to what his critics think of him.
The theory surrounding Robbie Williams gesture is unconfirmed, but it does make sense. Williams' critiques of Vladimir Putin is well documented, and the singer even released a song that somewhat mocked the leader called "Party Like A Russian." If the theory stands then Williams was sending a message to anyone who criticized him for performing at the ceremony, as well as stating he did not get paid for his services. Of course, without Williams admitting anything we're left to speculate, although BBC said Williams did state he was asked not to perform "Party Like A Russian," at the ceremony.
The World Cup is expected to run without any more middle fingers July 15 on Fox and FS1. For a look at what other shows are coming to television during that time and beyond, be sure to visit and bookmark our summer premiere guide. Those interested in other times networks have had drama result from a middle finger on live television, click here to relive what all went down when singer M.I.A. decided to do flip the bird during the Super Bowl.