Michael Jackson was a man known for many many things including his music, his awesome dance moves, and the fact he was able to wear a fedora without looking incredibly foolish. At the height of his fame, Michael Jackson was probably the most famous person in the world, and was beloved from all around the world. However,he left behind one of the most bizarre legacies of any man in history, from being one of the best-selling artists of all time, to a horrible addiction to plastic surgery, a victim of abuse, and legendary tabloid headlines that blurred the lines between fantasy and reality. Here are facts about Michael Jackson you probably didn’t know.
He Was Secretly BaldIt seemed that Michael Jackson appeared to always have flawless hair. As a little boy, he had an amazing afro, and as an adult, he was able to grow flowing black locks. However, it seemed after 1984, he was forced to wear wigs due to an accident that had occurred on set one day. While in the midst of filming a Pepsi commercial simulated to look like a live concert, Michael caught on fire in pyrotechnics accident. During the commercials sixth take, an explosion went off entirely too early, setting Michael’s hair on fire. For a few moments after, he just continued to dance, not noticing what had just happened. Members of theist and crew immediately swarmed around him attempting to extinguish the flames but the damage was already done. He suffered second and third degree burns from the accident to his face and scalp. To make up for the hair that was now permanently damaged, he had his hairline tattoos onto his forehead and wore a wig attached to hair that his autopsy called “sparse.” In 2009, the footage from the accident was leaked by US Weekly, much against Pepsi’s wishes.
He Had Many Surgeries After The Incident Which Sparked His Painkiller Addiction
The Pepsi incident had far worse repurcussions besides lighting Michael’s hair on fire. The tedious operations he had to endure afterward are what initially began his addiction to painkillers and his obsession with plastic surgery. In his autobiography entitled, Moonwalk, Michael admitted to having two rhinoplasties (apparently to help him breathe better) and a dimple created in his chin. He gave a list of causes for other differences in appearance with ranked from puberty, to a vegetarian diet, to stage and makeup effects. But, it was incredibly obvious that he had gone through an extensive number of procedures. Countless doctors have suggested that Jackson suffered from severe body dysmorphic disorder, and it is believed that he had surgery to fix his cheekbones, his lips, and lift his forehead, in addition to numerous nose jobs. It’s been reported that his father, Joe Jackson used to often insult Michael as a child, referring to him as “Big Nose,” which may have began Jackson’s body dysmorphia.
Jackson Purchased Bubbles As a Baby From A Primate Research Facility In TexasFor two years, Bubbles and Jackson were completely inseparable, and often times Bubbles would be seen sitting on Michael’s hip like an infant during multiple appearances and events. Bubbles would eat at the dining room with Jackson, he would sleep in a crib, and he had learned to use the toilet. Michael even taught Bubbles how to moonwalk, which was Jackson’s most famous dance move. Michael also had other chimp babies, who were less behaved than Bubbles. Max, another chimp, would take his dirty diaper off before climbing into bed. Yet, as Bubbles aged and went through puberty, he began to have aggressive tendencies and had become incredibly strong. Jackson, out of fear that Bubbles would attack his son, was forced to give him to a sanctuary. Back in 2003, there was an odd story that emerged in the tabloids that said that Bubbles had attempted suicide and had to be rushed to the hospital. These days, Bubbles is in his thirties and lives at the Center for Great Apes in Florida. He spends his time painting, listening to flute music, and hanging out with his older chimpanzee friend, Sam.
He Earned The Name Wacko Jacko From Sensational Tales In The MediaWhen he began lightening his skin in the mid-1980s, Michael Jackson had become a tabloid phenomenon. He grew up to completely despise his reputation and his nickname “Wacko Jacko,” but many of the wild stories that had earned him this name, were leaked by him. One of the first stories about Jackson that had emerged was in 1986, when it was said that he would be spending time in an oxygenated hyperbaric chamber in order to stop the aging process. It then turned out that he had released this untrue and bizarre tale to the press. Another odd story that had emerged about Jackson, was that he was trying to buy the remains of “Elephant Man” Joseph Merrick. This was another story that had been completely fabricated by Michael and his manager, Frank Dileo. He then later complained to biographer J.Randy Taraborrelli, “Why not just tell people I’m an alien from Mars? Tell them I eat live chickens and do a voodoo dance at midnight. They’ll believe anything you say because you’re a reporter. But if I, Michael Jackson, were to say, ‘I’m an alien from Mars and I eat live chickens and do a voodoo dance at midnight,’ people would say, ‘Oh man, that Michael Jackson is nuts. He’s cracked up. You can’t believe a single word that comes out of his mouth.”
He Suffered Child Abuse At The Hands Of His Father, Joe JacksonGrowing up as a child star can be tough, and it seems like young Michael Jackson experienced the worst of it. As a young star, he suffered hideous abuses at the hand of his father. He was routinely whipped and cursed at, and during an interview with Oprah Winfrey, he had tears in his eyes as he explained that he was so scared of his father that he would often throw up just seeing him. This could possibly explain his adulthood childlike behavior and drew him to children such as Macauly Culkin, who he often entertained at Neverland Ranch. Neverland was a 2,700 acre private amusement park with it’s own zoo, carnival rides, and two railroads. The ranch’s name derives from Peter Pan’s Never Never Land, where boys never grew up. It seemed that Michael had been attempting to relive the childhood he had never been able to enjoy growing up.
He Had Patented ShoesMichael Jackson is easily considered one of the best dancers of his or any generation. Although he didn’t invent his famous dance move “The Moonwalk”, it seems that he certainly perfected it. However, even a magical dancer like Michael Jackson wasn’t able to defy gravity completely. He shocked audiences in the music video for “Smooth Criminal” by standing at a 45-degree angle, which is not possible for any human capabilities. This was done by way of US Patent No. 5,255,452, granted to Michael and his two partners for their “Method and Means for Creating Anti-Gravity Illusion.” This method was done with a pair of shoes, footwear with a slot in the heels to hook onto retractable pegs on the floor. He patented the device not to generate income, but just to keep others from using the effects themselves. However, the patent expired in 2005 after it’s owners missed a payment.
Michael Jackson Had a Come-Back Planned Before His DeathBefore the ill-fated “This Is It” concert series, Michael Jackson was planning a massive Las Vegas comeback in 2005. This wasn’t going to be a bland, tired performance of the classics-Michael had a fantastic vision which included solar-powered costumes that would change color with the stage lights. The show would be promoted by a massive, 50 foot tall robot version of Michael, which would roam through the Nevada desert within view of McCarran airport. Another plan was hatched to build a Michael-Jackson themes hotel and casino, which would feature a laser-blasting android at the entrance. Unfortunately, the musician was just fresh off his trial and his star power had fallen a considerable amount. Even though he met with casino moguls like Steve Wynn, he failed to secure the necessary funding for this ambitious venture.
He Wanted To Be Spider-ManMany of us have thought about what it would be like to have superpowers, but for most of us, these are just daydreams. However, Michael Jackson was a tad more serious about his obsession with the impossible. In the late ’90s, he tried to purchase Marvel Comics, which had at the time, filed for bankruptcy. He wanted to produce a Spider-Man movie starring himself. However, unfortunately for Michael, this venture ended up failing, and the role of Spider-Man went to Tobey Maguire and the film was created. Then, when Jackson heard of an upcoming X-Men movie, he tried extremely hard to win the role of Professor X, the mutants’ chrome-domed paraplegic leader. Few roles might have been less appropriate for him. Veteran Star Trek actor Patrick Stewart eventually got the part.
He Suffered Heavily From VitiligoThroughout his youth, Michael Jackson had a medium-brown African-American complexion, but in the 19802, his skin lightened a considerate amount. Questioned by the media, Michael claimed that he had a condition called, “vitiligo.” Vitiligo is a vanishingly rare skin disorder that causes melanin-producing cells to malfunction and fail. The precise cause is unknown, but it is tied to the autoimmune system. Vitiligo does not operate in a uniform fashion. It exists in splotches that tend to continually grow and change shape. Jackson decided to bleach his skin with a cream called Porcelana, but we don’t know if the bleaching was an attempt to even out the patches or whether the bleaching itself is what began the vitiligo.
He Wrote All Of His Songs With His Voice
Although he was credited as the sole writer on almost his entire discography and having a hand in the composition of his music, he surprisingly had little talent for music. See, although, Jackson understood how to compose a song, he couldn’t play an instrument or read sheet music. To get around this, Jackson would compose his songs entirely in his head and then “sing” them to session musicians while recording his albums. Because of this, Jackson carried a tape recorder with him at all times, and when inspiration struck, he would sing it into the recorder or beat it. He would then layer all of these elements together to create an acapella version of his songs. Musicians who worked with him reported that he could “sing” chords and layer his voice skillfully enough to eerily replicate an entire string section.
Macaulay Culkin was pretty close with the King of Pop himself, Michael Jackson. In fact, you can spot him in Jackson’s video for “Black or White,” which was released during Culkin’s Home Alone glory days. They became incredibly close friends, to the point of odd speculations. Because of this, Jackson carried a tape recorder with him at all times, and when inspiration struck, he would sing it into the recorder or beat it. He would then layer all of these elements together to create an acapella version of his songs. Musicians who worked with him reported that he could “sing” chords and layer his voice skillfully enough to eerily replicate an entire string section.
The Ranch Was Raided
Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch was raided in 2003 amid claims that the pop star was involved with young boys. Over 70 police officers searched the premises and what they found was beyond disturbing. Authorities confiscated numerous items, including a “collection of images and footage of children and adults without their clothes, as well as animal abuse, bondage, and sadomasochism.” And this wasn’t the first time that such allegations had been brought against the pop star. In 1993 the father of a 13-year-old boy accused Jackson of abuse. The two parties eventually reached a financial settlement of $23 million. Michael Jackson’s relationship with the boy was eerily similar to that of Macaulay’s.
Inside the Neverland Ranch, police found a chilling photo of Macaulay Culkin, signed with the message- “Don’t leave me alone in the house.” However, what could be seen as a desperate cry for help, was simply a Home Alone reference. Macaulay stated in an interview with Larry King that Jackson called him up randomly one day after seeing him on Home Alone and asked him to hang out at the ranch. He said that the two mainly played video games or rode carnival rides, he even slept over on occasion. Macaulay has emphasized that he was never abused or ever felt uncomfortable or unsafe during the times they were together. Through and through, he refused to let his friend’s reputation be tarnished. At Jackson’s trial in 2005, the singer was acquitted of all 14 charges with the help of his formidable team of lawyers.