- On Sunday night, NBC aired “Jesus Christ Superstar Live” starring John Legend as Jesus.
- NBC’s live musicals have mostly been misses, but people loved this one.
- People on Twitter praised the casting, costumes, and modern interpretation of the beloved musical.
On Easter Sunday, NBC aired its latest live musical, “Jesus Christ Superstar” starring John Legend. Most of the NBC’s live musicals have been flops, like “The Sound of Music” starring Carrie Underwood (2013) and “Peter Pan” starring Allison Williams (2014).
But many people were live-tweeting during “Jesus Christ Superstar” and loving it (even more than NBC’s last live musical, “The Wiz” in 2015).
And a lot of people watched it, too. According to The Wrap, about 9.4 million people tuned in, which is a lot more than the last live show on Fox, “A Christmas Story,” which had about 4.4 million viewers in December 2017. NBC’s “Hairspray Live” had about 9 million viewers in 2016.
Written by Andrew Lloyd Webber (“Cats,” “The Phantom of the Opera”) and Tim Rice, “Jesus Christ Superstar” was first released in 1970 as a concept album. The musical explores the humanity of Jesus, and in it he feels frustration about his own faith and his followers. Years later, it’s one of those musicals that high schools all over the United States perform.
People praised NBC’s live version of the beloved musical for embracing its weirdness, even adding Alice Cooper to the cast as King Herod. The set featured scaffolding and the modern costumes included racer back tank tops and sequins.
Here’s what people were saying Sunday night:
The amount of money they’d make if this production of Jesus Christ Superstar hit Broadway can only be expressed in a number with too many zeroes to fit in a tweet
— Hayes Brown (@HayesBrown) April 2, 2018
BREAKING: I am watching the Jesus Christ Superstar concert and I am very into it.
— Paul F. Tompkins (@PFTompkins) April 2, 2018
— Lindsay Kimble (@lekimble) April 2, 2018
— ••• courtney ••• (@cakrolik) April 2, 2018
I’ve not been a fan of these live televised musicals, but Jesus Christ Superstar has made up for all of them! Well done NBC! #JesusChristSuperstarLive
— sza suz (@SEAriale) April 2, 2018
— Diana Butler Bass (@dianabutlerbass) April 2, 2018
Earlier today I was regretting agreeing to spend my Sunday night reviewing JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR but we're through Act I now and oh my Lord this is good.
— Noel Murray (@NoelMu) April 2, 2018
That was just excellent, @JohnLegend, @BrandonVDixon, @SaraBareilles, @NormLewis, @AliceCooper, @OfficialALW, cast and crew of @JCSTheMusical. And to nail all of it live. Congrats! #JesusChristSuperstarLive @NBC pic.twitter.com/IUGrGdimaC
— Willie Geist (@WillieGeist) April 2, 2018