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since 1997 | by maryann johanson

watch it: Michael Jackson’s “Black and White”

A nonhagiographic reminder of why Jackson was the King of Pop… and an early master of the music video:



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  • marshall

    Thanks for teaching me a new word! That pretty much sums up my feelings on the man.

  • marshall

    –edit: That would be the non part of the word.

  • To me it’s just a reminder of how over-rated and hyped he was. The intro is stolen from Twisted Sister, followed by a series of dorky stereotypes that only a 5-year-old would accept as illustrating the cultural diversity of our world, and it ends with a pointless John Landis cameo.

    I remember watching it and being impressed with the CGI transitions from one face to the next at the end, which was cutting-edge for the time. But what does that have to do with Jackson or, for that matter, Landis, who almost seems to be trying to take credit for it by showing himself directing a scene that was manufactured by computer geeks?

    I’m exactly the age where it is expected that Jackson would have been an important figure in my cultural environment growing up, but he was never that impressive to me. He had a few catchy tunes, and a few good dance moves, but he was weird and infantile, and never had much to say.

  • MaryAnn

    I guess I remember Jackson from before he was weird and infantile…

  • LaSargenta

    I was never a fan of his. Yes, he had a great voice and yes he was a great choreographer; but, give me a break. Prince of Pop? No, that is more likely to be someone as risk-taking and creative as The Artist Once Again Known As Prince. I don’t recall him writing any songs saying that he was too stupid to use a condom but it’s all the woman’s fault anyhow.

    I was a teen when that f&%*ing Billie Jean thing was played incessantly on the radio. You know, I REALLY liked this song: http://www.imeem.com/othersideoftheuniverse/music/eiGbVKAj/lydia-murdock-superstaranswer-to-billie-jean-12mix/ It is a longer mix, but it does a better job with the beat.

    Now, THAT was good!

    Didn’t get much airplay in the US — I was privileged to have access to other radio stations. Shortwave is a wonderful thing.

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