Saturday, February 15, 2003

Michael Jackson Under Fire Again

Already embroiled in controversy ever since the startling documentary on his life was aired February 7th by 20/20, Michael Jackson faced new damning accusations today from amusement experts around the nation.

“I was initially shocked by all that stuff about Michael sleeping in the same bed as little kids, getting all that plastic surgery, and making his kids wear masks all the time,” said Kansas enthusiast Ned Henry. “Then, when I saw the replay of the whole interview this weekend on VH1, I noticed something I’d overlooked…something even more terrible and depressing. Neverland is a really crummy park.”

“How can the mystique of Neverland be maintained after the public has viewed what is basically a miniature showroom of ancient Chance rides?” asked Oregon enthusiast Bill Dunworthy. “Here we all were, thinking that, along with Stricker’s Grove, Neverland would be the one Grail most enthusiasts could never attain. We dreamed, we fantasized, we hoped one day we might get a glimpse of the Promised Land. What a disappointment. That place has less to do than Quassy.”

Initial allegations of the lack of Neverland’s quality as a first-rate park were first made by Vernon Kindle, 12, who had spent a weekend at Jackson’s Ranch last year. “Michael said there were so many fun things to do, but all he had were some swings and a carousel and a Zipper. He must really like that one, though. He kept telling us we should ‘ride on his Zipper’ over and over, but it wasn’t that fun. He told some kids that the Happy Bouncy Bedtastic Funtime Ride was the best, but my parents took me home before I could do that one. I bet it wasn’t that great, either.”

Said Tocelyn Callahan of Texas, “it’s bad enough that he only has a bare minimum of rides, but the way they are run is atrocious. If you rewind the tape and watch the footage of the swinging ship, you can tell it’s on the lamest, most wimpy program imaginable. The versions at Coney Island and Indiana Beach flip up so that the ends of the boat are aimed straight down; Michael’s barely gets past the horizontal. He’s apparently the Prince of Chickens, too. Flat ride enthusiasts won’t be lining up to give their hard-earned cash to Neverland, I’ll tell you that much.”

Journalist Martin Bashir, who interviewed Jackson for the documentary, stated “I was honestly more concerned with Micahel’s disturbing relations with children, both his own and those who stay at the Ranch in his bed. But, now that you mention it, I was pretty disappointed in the rides, too. The swings were slow, the Zipper was pretty creaky and didn’t flip as well as the one at LeSourdsville, and I was kind of hoping the carousel would have something neat like a goat or a lion for me to ride on, but it didn’t. Michael kept saying that he wanted to get a roller coaster, but that won’t help me any, because he didn’t have one when I was doing the interview. I suppose I can pretty much assume I won’t be invited back anytime soon, so I guess I’ll miss out if he actually gets any rides that don’t suck ass.”

Jackson has issued a statement protesting Bashir’s comments, saying “today I feel more betrayed than perhaps ever before; that someone could sacrifice the trust I placed in him and make these terrible and unfair comments. Everyone who knows me knows the truth, and that is that the swings are very fast and the Zipper was sluggish only due to the weather. And I swear to you that the Pharaoh’s Fury ride is normally much more thrilling, but Martin insisted we put it on a mild setting so he wouldn’t get sick, then twisted the situation against me to taint my good name.”

Weeping uncontrollably, Jackson wailed that “the bad man hurt me, the bad man hurt me,” before running to curl up in a fetal position inside his oxygen tent with a tame family of marmots wearing berets.