25 years later, “Bad” is one of the songs we think of first when we think of Michael Jackson, right? There’s “Thriller”, of course… then I think the subway dance brings “Bad” to mind rather quickly.
Now make a slight shift in your thinking… what if “Bad” had been the planned duet with Michael Jackson and Prince? What would we think? Would it have been anywhere near the same song… would it have the same impact… would it have been parodied as often or as thoroughly?
In case it wasn’t obvious, the video is meant to evoke West Side Story with the gang-fight-as-danceoff… and it’s inspired by a story that Jackson heard about a kid from the ghetto who was murdered because he went to an upscale school and was trying to get away from the streets.
Of course, if you’ve read the blog at all, you know I have a soft spot in my heart for Weird Al Yankovic’s parodies of the songs I’ve profiled… so…
…and there are some who think the 25th anniversary version of “Bad”, remade earlier this year by Afrojack (with Pitbull and DJ Buddha) remixing the original with their vocal contributions, was the real parody. The LA Times called it an “insult to Jackson’s memory”. Well, I guess it’s not a surprise – it’s kind of like the woman in Europe who “repaired” a portrait of Jesus by turning him into… something else.
Tomorrow, now that X-Factor is in full stride, a return visit from an X-Factor judge…
Other songs that reached #1 on October 24:
1960 – “I Want To Be Wanted (Per Tutta La Vita)” by Brenda Lee (her second, 1 week)
2009 – “3” by Britney Spears (her third, 1 week)