The King is dead … who cares?
Of course, everyone with a heart and compassion cares.
The music industry, the film industry, his stalwart fan-base and the reality-challenged souls who believe MJ was an innocent, troubled genius. Stuck in his time-warp of a man/child’s recreation of a childhood never experienced, he could never escape his own Fortress of Solitude.
He was never sturdy enough to scale the walls of his own prison, exemplified by his homage to Childhood—his private Fantasyland dreamed up by the ultimate fantasy figure — a Lost Boy ripped from the pages of Peter Pan.
No one would dare negate his extraordinary talent, genius for changing the face of pop and pop culture for eternity. His music and dancing will always electrify, thanks to videos lovingly played and replayed.
And yet … what about those children? Not the innocent ones (and they were all once innocent) who frolicked on the grounds of this eccentric 50-year-old’s playground. I’m referring to the children who bravely came forward and offered up sordid details of a star gone off the wall.
True or not, there were simply too many glimpses into his weird thought-processes. Never more staggering than when he professed that sleeping with children was a beautiful thing. Maybe when there your kids waking from nightmares or thunderstorms. But not for junior high-like-sleepovers allegedly involving Jesus Juice (sweet white wine).
The African-American child star who broke our hearts with his staggering pre-pubescent smile, grace and impossible timing now brings conflicted emotions. I fell in love with that pure, angelic and ever-smiling façade when I was in school, mesmerized by the tight dance moves and crazy/unbelievable musical prowess. I could never reconcile that beautiful boy with the macabre-looking white man and baby-dangler.
I sure figured Amy Winehouse would kick the bucket (if not the drugs) way before this chameleon would change his spots one more time. But this was not to be. During his surreal life, peppered with allegations of drug abuse, self-abnegation and self-love and a 40-year stint living in a fishbowl, how could this troubled soul not have dark secrets?
His sensational child-molestation charges, from which he was acquitted, became tabloid fodder for months, exacerbated by his old-man frailty and mental instability.
Despite his alleged brutal childhood, he survived. Sort off. Coping skills were most likely never absorbed, despite being friends with wonderful role models, including Deepak Chopra and musical genius Quincy Jones.
Even if you are of two minds when it comes to throning or de-throning the self-proclaimed King of Pop, one thing will forever be clear.
Michael Jackson put on a good show.