A Thriller with a disappointing ending

So Michael Jackson is dead. Which is a surprise because I thought he was a cyborg.

You know who I feel sorry for in this situation – the guy who won the Today Show Michael Jackson impersonator contest. Not only did he embarrass himself in front of an Australian television audience – he now won’t win his prize for doing so.

Ben alluded to potential jokes about Peter Pan Michael Jackson in his post (while vaguely condemning them) I’ll embrace them – and you’re welcome to leave your own in the comments.

One of the ones I thought of is a largely irreverent comment speculating about a fiery dance party he may or may not now be having with Elvis…

Vale Michael Jackson – may your face live on forever.


i mean this in a very sincere way, without harshness- what is your thinking, as a christian, in joking about someone who’s just died, celeb or not?

I know you are a thoughtful person who thinks things thru, and has reasoning to back up what they say. You know from my post what i think about these jokes, and i just don’t get how you can be ok with it, one, but actually take part and encourage it, two.

Nathan says:

I have an issue with the glorification of dead celebrities.

I think satire is a legitimate approach to this deification of a guy who happened to be a good singer.

Why is his, ultimately tragic, death more significant than the other deaths that have occurred unreported today.

Nathan says:

Also, I would have made jokes about Michael Jackson yesterday – I’m not sure why death is a game changer. Sure we should mourn with those who mourn in a relational sense – but I have no relationship with Michael Jackson.

I think the outpouring of grief when a public figure dies is largely a cathartic thing on the part of the person expressing the grief – and is of no comfort to the person who is actually mourning.

Nathan says:

Plus, I really like (pun slightly intended) black humour.

Well, thanks for explaining. You make good points. I agree with where you are coming from, in terms of the shameful fact that we are way more interested in a Big Shot dying than Joe Bloggs dying.

But I think you are coming at it from the wrong angle. I think the godly response is to see it as a reminder that we need to talk more about Joe Bloggs, not mock the Big Shot.

He is a real guy, like you, who God loved and who has just died, and now deals with eternal judgement. I just think that needs to shut our mouths and make us sober, not open them up in joking, like we aren’t as fragile and heading for the same judgement.

I completely encourage putting the focus on Joe Bloggs, but can’t see any death, regardless of whose, as a joke, satire, pun, black or whatever.

As for the whole media side, well take aim at that for sure. It is stomach churning to see them licking their lips athaving story fodder for weeks to come.

Nathan says:

Yeah, I guess it’s just a different approach to the tragedy of the inevitability of death. I choose to laugh because I think it’s a great leveler. I could try to make some parallel between the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus and the grain farmer who builds up riches and then dies – as being some sort of satire from Jesus – but that’s a longish bow to draw, that I won’t do without thinking about it further.

Andrew says:

Death of a celeb shocks people because it mocks the god of the modern western world.

Leah says:

There’s a difference between choosing laughter as a leveler and choosing to laugh at the person who has died.

Nathan says:

So yesterday I was allowed to poke fun at Michael jackson but today I’m not? Just because he’s dead. Death, if anything, makes his life funnier.

Amy says:

I am wondering when the Elvis-style conspiracy theories will start.

Leah says:

Making jokes about Michael Jackson is ok, I think. Making jokes about his death isn’t. Not for a while at any rate. And it would probably be respectful to stop making jokes about him for a while after his death. You can’t pretend death is inconsequential. I don’t see how it makes things funnier.