All his scandals are not helping Michael Jackson's bottom line. Already in constant financial difficulty, the one time King of Pop needs some CD sales to offset some of his debt. But people are registering their opinion of him thusly.
Lost in all this mess is any kind of real defense of Jackson concerning the molestation. But a 1994 article in GQ Magazine by respected journalist Mary A.Fischer may wind up being Jackson's "smoking gun." In a good way. Called "Was Michael Jackson Framed?" the heavily researched article revealed that the parents and stepfather of the 13-year-old who sued Jackson were at odds with each other and in financial disarray when they seized on the idea of destroying Jackson.
In particular, Fischer wrote, that the child's father, set out to "destroy" Jackson for a number of reasons, not the least of which was the father's inability to make it in Hollywood. Fischer also revealed that the father had spent quite a bit of time with his son and Jackson at his home and on vacations. Fischer, in fact describes the family using Jackson as a pawn in their endless custody battle.
Interestingly, the Fischer article seems to have disappeared over time, although some Web sites still carry links to it. Fischer, who lives in Los Angeles, wrote a number of explosive investigative pieces during the mid 1990s. Coincidentally, she also had experience writing about child abuse in the McMartin case.
In her GQ piece, she cites a taped phone call between the child's father and his wife's second husband.
Fischer wrote that on the tape, the child's father: "And if I go through with this, I win big-time. There's no way I lose. I've checked that inside out. I will get everything I want, and they will be destroyed forever. June will lose [custody of the son]...and Michael's career will be over."
So, is it possible that Michael Jackson -- known for eccentric behavior beyond the pale -- was an innocent who was extorted by evil-doers? Maybe the answers aren't that clear. There will undoubtedly be more to come shortly.
Maybe the ABC documentary made Michael Jackson's European album sales spike. But it's done nothing but harm to his business in the U.S.
According to SoundScan figures I confirmed yesterday, Jackson sold a total of just over 1000 albums last week. That included 900 copies of Invincible, 100 of Thriller, 15 of Bad, and 20 of Off the Wall.
Of course, in a way this was good news since the sales of Invincible, for example, were up by 200 from the week before. Thriller was up by 20, and Off the Wall was up by 4.
I'm not talking percents here, or millions, or even thousands. Those are the numbers. Jackson is down to a handful of sales in the United States. Continued speculation about his fitness as a parent, or his possible involvement in a ten year old molestation case cannot be helping the situation.
Daredevil, the 20th Century Fox action film starring Ben Affleck, will wind up with a $42-45 million weekend take. On Friday night it did $15 million, beating the number 2 movie -- How to Lose A Guy in 10 Days by double its own take of $7.5 million. That's not a spectacular take for Daredevil, but it's good enough. Because this is a holiday weekend, Fox will be able to hold off final reporting until Tuesday, which will make the final numbers seem a bit better.