The King of Pop’s forgotten pop culture empire

Gaming, Movies

Michael Jackson was so much more than music videos, money troubles and legal problems.

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Remember this?

Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker rocked arcades and home video game consoles in 1990. The game, a tie-in to the Moonwalker film, features Michael going after kidnapped children with the help of Bubbles the chimp (who gave him the ability to turn into a robot) and the magical power of dance, baby.

It’s one of the first games I can remember having the odd but cool 3/4 perspective that was also used in the popular Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles arcade game.

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I actually remember seeing Captain EO at Disneyland, but I don’t remember anything about it except that I liked the weird aliens and 3-D special effects more than I cared about Michael Jackson. It’s probably one of the biggest-budget productions to fade into Howard the Duck levels of obscurity. It was an all-star effort: directed by Francis Ford Coppola, produced by George Lucas, scored by James Horner and starring Jackson — who performed two new songs — and Anjelica Huston. The story was by Lucas and Coppola, and it was brought to life by Disney’s Imagineers.

michaeljacksonNow playing in EO’s venue, Tomorrowland’s Magic Eye (now Kodak) Theater: Honey, I Shrunk the Audience. Which is worth a go, if you’re going to be in the Magic Kingdom anyway.

Then, of course, there’s the time Jacko appeared on Diff’rent Strokes (except it wasn’t really him) and The Simpsons (when it was really him, doing the voice of an obese white man who thought he was Michael Jackson).

And who can forget South Park’s “Mr. Jefferson”:

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Slideshow: Michael Jackson through the years

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