Okay, so we watched “The Micheal Jackson Interview: The Footage You Weren’t Meant to See” last night. The tone of the show was set early when the host walked out and I groaned. “Who’s he?” asked the Snook. “Maury friggin’ Povich,” I answered. “He was Jerry Springer before Jerry Springer was Jerry Springer.” In other words, journalistic integrity did not seem to be a priority. (What, Geraldo wasn’t available?) Anyhoo, over the next two hours Povich proceeded to show us questions and bits of the interviews that were left out. I have to admit, Micheal did seem to have a point. Bashir gave every impression that he (like the rest of Jackson’s entourage) thought Jackson was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Bashir praised Jackson for his parenting abilities and sympathised with him about unscrupulous tabloid journalists. I can see where Jackson would’ve been shocked at the tone of the final edit.
The show also included a number of interviews with people around Micheal Jackson: his parents, his make-up artist, etc. I was most interested in Debbie Rowe (his former wife and the mother of his children). I kinda wanted to see how she’d justify the whole “giving my babies to Micheal Jackson” thing. Turns out that I actually kinda understand her reasoning. He was her friend and he wanted kids, so she had them for him. I’ve jokingly made similar offers to gay friends in the past. So I can kinda see that. Overall Rowe came off a lot less weird than I expected.
As I summarized below, the overall impression I had after the show was, yeah, Martin Bashir is sort of a jerk, but that doesn’t mean Micheal is any less weird. In fact, some of the extra material they showed made him sound even more wacky. (“The chimps help you clean the house? Sure, Snow White.”) I also liked the bit at the very very end, where Povich read some statement from Bashir that he really liked Micheal and he’d never seen him do anything illegal. It was so obviously such a “See? It’s not libel!” moment. Way to cover your ass, Povich.
(You know how you’re supposed to add “… in bed!” to the end of your fortune cookie fortunes? Well, I inadvertantly invented a new version of that game for use with this show. It was during an interview with Jackson’s makeup artist and she was all, “Bashirs will come and go, but Micheal… He will live forever.” And I snorted, “Yeah… in his hyperbaric chamber!” It was really funny at the time. You can tack it on just about every soundbite in this stupid show for added amusement. I recommend it.)