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The Weekly WTF: ‘Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker’

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bill-swift - January 24, 2014

Michael Jackson was, let's be frank, all kinds of crazy-ass. If he wasn't dangling his baby from a balcony for no fathomable reason, he was suddenly waking one morning as a white man. Nevertheless, equally undeniable is the fact that he could dance. And we mean the guy could effing dance.

So dance-ily dancetastic was his dancing, it once thwarted a fiendish drug dealer's plans and rescued several kidnapped children. Oh yes indeed. Step forward, Michael Jackson's Moonwalker.

The game was inspired, naturally, by the 1988 movie of the same name, which was already pretty damn bizarre. Jackson being pursued by rabid autograph hunters and gunslingers? Disguising himself as a rabbit? Transforming into Sylvester Stallone and Pee-Wee Herman? It was a real WTF did I just watch moment, a biographical affair with a liberal side order of crazy salad. With crazy dressing.

Don't cry, little boy! Your yellow sweater IS a bit shit, but MJ's coming to save you.

Two years later, it became an arcade beat ‘em up, in which the ass-whuppings were administered by Jackson's badass dancing and posing. His special attack was Dance Magic, which forced foes to bust moves alongside him before exploding. The implication presumably being: try to compete with MJ's skills, and you'll lose your shit. Your shit will explode.

During more serene moments, his dance moves merely unleashed laser beams and such. All of these are actually things that are true. And it gets worse. Buckle up, gentlemen.

Thought you were dreaming this? So did we, but it's happening.

This madness is based on the movie's Smooth Criminal section, which means mucho cruising about in a fedora and suit. Also on the agenda: grabbing your crotch and shrieking hee hee! and/or chamone!, and rescuing children from some drug-dealing asshole named Mr. Big. Because that's what passes for a plot with Michael Jackson's Moonwalker (the drug-dealer stuff, that is, not the crotch thing).

On the one hand, it's all rather reminiscent of Streets of Rage, with you beating on a crime lord and his criminal cohorts and such. On the other, it's very, very not. After all, it's not every day that your pet monkey, Bubbles, helps you to transform into a murderous-yet-funky robot. We wish it were, but life just isn't that awesome.

Source of images: uvlist.

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