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Whacko Jacko Necrothrillia Festival!

2009-07-07 15:12

Here are a few of the craziest reactions, cash-ins and stories making the rounds.

Chaos in LA
Somebody call Jack Bauer! Fearing an unmanageable influx of mourners to the city, police are on red alert and authorities are imploring crazed fans to stay at home and watch the memorial on TV along with the mother of Jacko's kids. A total of 1.6 million people had applied for tickets for Michael Jackson's memorial service in Los Angeles by Saturday's deadline, organisers said. Some attempted to sell their free tickets on eBay – others are very excited to have been invited.

Mourning in Cape Town and Joburg
Fans and musicians gathered in CT at a Heart FM gig to sign a book of condolences that was sent to the Jackson family, and sing "We Are the World", lead by the celebrity musicians onstage. The tickets sold like warm bread. Perhaps fittingly, the tribute event was held at a Casino - see photos. Not willing to be outdone, Joburg flashmobbers gathered to Moonwalk at 1pm on Friday 3rd July. Radio got in on it too - Gareth Cliff dropped his fashionably cynical outlook and cashed in, dressing in white socks and black shoes to honour the dead superstar. No matter which way you turned the dial, every station was playing Michael Jackson. SABC (is it still cashing in if you've got no cash?) kept it budget and rescreened the horrendous MJ vehicle Moonwalker, in which there's one cool scene involving a cute kid, and another in which Michael Jackson escapes wearing a rabbit hat to disguise himself from the hordes of fans (a la A Hard Day's Night, the much better Beatles vehicle). To save you watching the whole thing, here are best five minutes on YouTube. And for better coverage, check out Michael Jackson Unmasked at Nu Metro cinemas on Friday the 10th of July 2009 - a simultaneous one-night-only release at the following Nu Metro Cinemas around the country: Bedford Centre, Clearwater Mall, The Glen, Montecasino, Menlyn Park, Boardwalk Port Elizabeth, Canal Walk, The Pavilion, Riverside, and Loch Logan at 6:30pm, 8:00pm and 9:30pm.

Live televised funeral
I know! Weird! Who wants to watch a funeral on TV? Describing Jacko in glowing terms as an "icon", MNET announced that MK and Channel O would screen the memorial service, live, simultaneously. Interested? From 6.45pm, fans get to see the elephants and horses and celebs being wheeled out. Details here.  Like a royal wedding or showgirls in diamante nipple caps, it's tasteless, terrible, glittery - and fascinating.

Instant biographies
The book, called Moonwalk in Paradise (sic man!), hit the bookshelves over the weekend, the China Daily said, after the authors "subsisted on a diet of coffee and cigarettes and worked round-the-clock to complete it." In other words, Insta-lit written by people on legal crack. Sounds like just what we need more of. And I'm not the only one who thinks so – various other planned speedy-biogs will soon be on sale, with various other projects planned in China alone. Let's hope the translations are as entertaining as the instructions that came with my vacuum cleaner. "Amazing hard sucking action".   

Michael's ghost spotted at Neverland
Fans claim the image of his spirit can be seen in the background of a TV show filmed inside his beloved Neverland ranch. This will not be the first time we hear these ghost stories. All the stories regurgitated about Elvis will now be regurgitated about Jacko. Thanks to Jacko's many different forms, crazy people of all ages, races, genders and sexual persuasions will be able to dress up like him. Even in death, our new hero unites humanity.

Celebrity death action
At the BET Awards where Jacko's jerk father used the public forum to push his record company, Keri Hilson wore a costume from Thriller video. Lily Allen sported one white glove for her performance at Glastonbury. Celebrity funeral fans include Ron Boyd (a family friend), Mariah Carey, Jennifer Hudson, Shaheen Jafargholi (a finalist on Britain's Got Talent), Magic Johnson, Martin Luther King III, John Mayer (why, John, why?), Lionel Richie, Smokey Robinson, Rev. Al Sharpton, Brooke Shields, Usher, and Stevie Wonder. Mariah Carey will perform.

The coffin
First option considered was a glass coffin, so that fans from all over the world could ogle and Google and pay their respects. Apparently the family has instead settled for a $25 000 gold-plated affair. It's going to be freaky. But how else would you expect someone like him to go.

The media of many faces
That's us! Perhaps the freakiest thing of all is the way everyone's scrambled to change their tune. JACKO WAS A GOOD DAD, the newspaper headlines screamed, days after mocking him mercilessly. And magazines had it even more awkward - the latest issue of Q magazine has a diagram of MJ's body lying on the Dr's examination table, with captions about how each part of his body would stand up to the gruelling tour schedule he had planned.

Ja, I know. It's unbelievable, but true! Now I'm off to apply for compassionate leave. Life will never, *sob* be the same. Boss.

Everybody's got Jacko Fever. Unfortunately for those of us who think the troubled star's death is far from tragic, it's not fatal.

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