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Untouchable 
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Heinlein Nexus
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:10 am
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Location: Pacific NorthWest
Post Untouchable
As tawdry as it may seem to admit reading, let alone review, the Michael Jackson biography, I have just read it and have a few observations on point for this forum.

Even the gestation of this book was unusual. I saw it show up on the library's "New Titles" section two years ago, thought, "Why not?" and put a hold on it. A year later it was still "on order" and a librarian phoned to tell me that the book's production was delayed but I would still get it when it came out. Suddenly yesterday it appeared on the hold shelf. Reading it makes the delay instantly explicable: there is a huge afterword on pivotal events that transpired only three months ago.

Reading this does provide, finally, some clear insight into MJ's psyche. You may not be interested in that, but most people did grow up with his music ringing in their ears constantly and so he is of at least some importance to a great many of us. As a case study in human dynamics, his story is arresting. I realize this may not come as a great shock to observers of Hollywood, but he really was surrounded by so many people out to screw him - including, and especially, every member of his family - that you can't help but feel pity. He had the great misfortune of being the only one in his family to cling to integrity and ended up a psychological misfit. The author dissects the molestation trial against him and why the media and prosecution thought they had won their case when they didn't have one, and decided that the most likely conclusion was that he died a virgin.

A minor Heinlein connection: At one point Tony Buzan, flamboyant inventor of Mindmapping, enters the story, and the description of his invention remarks that it infused elements from sources as diverse as "Robert Heinlein novels." I have read at least one of Buzan's original Mindmapping books within the last two years and recall no such connection.

And, more controversially: I think he would have made an excellent choice for portraying Valentine Michael Smith. I can enumerate the reasons not to do so as readily as you, I'm sure, but there's no doubt in my mind that he would have brought an uncommon intensity and a unique empathy to the part. Few people alive could carry off the apotheosis without a scintilla of self-consciousness, but he would have been one.


Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:22 am
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Heinlein Nexus
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:10 am
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Location: Pacific NorthWest
Post Re: Untouchable
Well... on second thoughts: he could have aced the first half. He could have pulled off the final scene. The part in between, where Mike is a very worldly-wise and charming leader... not so much.


Sun Nov 25, 2012 7:26 am
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PITA Bred
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 12:17 pm
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Location: The Quiet Earth
Post Re: Untouchable
I'll agree in that MJ was not of this world, at least not in adulthood. My thumbnail of him and his admirers is that those who love him, love him based on the controlled public presentation - the performances, the interviews etc. that were under his publicist's control, etc. Those (of us) who admit his gifts but believe he was one strange, damaged, almost certainly mentally ill individual glean our position from the uncontrolled presentations - the interviews by neutral and hostile sources, the court appearances and testimony, the objective evidence of billion-dollar kiddie playgrounds like Neverland...

The lovers want to dismiss all the latter as some kind of unfounded hating, but I think they're as wrong as the detractors who try to paint him as talentless.

Very talented. Extremely tortured. The next thing to an alien this planet has yet seen. A sad and cautionary tale, although the intersection of such talent, madness and mega-fame doesn't come along often enough to make it useful.

(At the time he married Presley, I had a little shock-joke I liked to drop. The topic would come up and I'd mention that I didn't approve of mixed marriages. The temp in the room would drop about 20 degrees, and I'd finish "... I'm sorry, I just don't think humans should marry aliens.")


Sun Nov 25, 2012 8:42 am
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Joined: Sat Oct 23, 2010 12:42 pm
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Post Re: Untouchable
JamesGifford wrote:
(At the time he married Presley, I had a little shock-joke I liked to drop. The topic would come up and I'd mention that I didn't approve of mixed marriages. The temp in the room would drop about 20 degrees, and I'd finish "... I'm sorry, I just don't think humans should marry aliens.")


You're an evil, evil man, James. I love it. :roll:

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OJ III


Sun Nov 25, 2012 12:47 pm
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Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:40 pm
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Post Re: Untouchable
JamesGifford wrote:
A sad and cautionary tale . . .


To me, a "cautionary tale" would imply "he made bad choice; learn from his mistakes and don't do as he did". But I doubt he ever had the opportunity to make many of the choices that led to his situation. I gather (and haven't read the book) that his life was controlled for him since he was a child. MJ was sick, but his parents were depraved.

And every year, on his birthday, KMart has a Michael Jackson sale: boys pants half off.


Sun Nov 25, 2012 5:41 pm
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Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 11:20 am
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Location: Cloudcroft New Mexico
Post Re: Untouchable
Escape From Neverland Ranch flash game.

http://www.zooass.com/games/neverland/



Your job is to keep the kids from escaping the ranch and you are armed with a net gun.

How can you tell when it is bed time at the Neverland Ranch?

The big hand is on the little hand.

Rob


Sun Nov 25, 2012 5:50 pm
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