TORONTO >> Justin Bieber faced a hostile homecoming during his halftime performance at Canada’s football Grey Cup, facing boos and jeers.
The Toronto crowd booed Sunday when the 18-year-old pop star’s face popped up on the JumboTron screen. They booed when a host spoke his name. And they booed as he took the stage and throughout his medley of the chart-topper “Boyfriend” and the disco-inflected “Beauty and a Beat.”
If Bieber was bothered, it didn’t show.
“Thank you so much Canada,” Bieber said. “I love you.”
Earlier in the week, Bieber was presented with a Diamond Jubilee Medal by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and caused a scene by wearing overalls, unbuttoned on one shoulder, over a white T-shirt, with a backwards baseball cap.
There was sufficient uproar that Harper even weighed in on Twitter.
“In fairness to (Bieber),” Harper tweeted Sunday, “I told him I would be wearing my overalls too.”
The Canadian Football League may have been hoping to court Bieber’s army of tween followers on Sunday. But recent Grey Cup halftime performers have skewed toward the comparatively heavy likes of Nickelback and Lenny Kravitz.
“J-Biebs doesn’t scream football, you know? Neither does Carly Rae Jepsen,” said Calgary’s Ryan Prisque, 22.
The 27-year-old Jepsen also received a mixed reaction at first Sunday but won the crowd over during an enthusiastic medley of her latest single, “This Kiss,” and her infectious hit “Call Me Maybe.”