So at the beginning of the week we lost Ed McMahon. Then all hell broke loose on Thursday. Yes, Farrah Fawcett & Michael Jackson both passed. This week will most definitely be one for the entertainment history books. I’m sure we’re all looking forward to those “In Memoriam” montages at the Grammys & the Oscars.
Whe the news broke of Michael Jackson’s death it eclipsed that of the other two losses in one fell swoop. The regular news media & social media was up in arms over the death of the King of Pop. I saw some get pretty ticked off that we were forgetting Ed & Farrah. Whilst I agree on some level that all three were significant losses, they were not all equal, with all due respect.
I venture to theorize that Ed McMahon & Farrah Fawcett were mainly American Icons. Yes, they had some international celebrity, but not on the level that Michael Jackson had. I don’t seem to recall any international media footage of people in tears & passing out when Ed & Farrah walked by.
The medium of music in an of itself is highly emotional & extremely personal. It’s the soundtrack of our lives as we so often hear. I had the great pleasure & opportunity to have two older brothers who embraced the early days of MTV as I was growing up. So I remember the night of Thriller’s premiere. I remember Black or White’s premiere too. You can imagine my shock & awe as I listened to a caller on a radio show who is only 2 years older than I am say he doesn’t remember Michael in his heyday. He obviously meant the Jackson 5 days, right?!
That same caller said two generations will remember Michael differently: one for his music & iconography, the other for the controversy & scandal. He said with himself being in the younger generation he’d remember the troubles Michael faced. Please excuse me while I pick my jaw up from the floor. This man apparently grew up under a rock & has no cultural compass.
Truth is Michael Jackson is a world icon and his influence is wide-reaching, international. So it should not be a shock that he is receiving the lion’s share of media this week, and let’s face it throughout the rest of the year, most likely.
Don’t get me wrong I grew up watching rerun episodes of Charlie’s Angels & seeing Farrah Fawcett in The Burning Bed, like an after school special only for adults. I grew up watching The Tonight Show & Star Search every Saturday afternoon. All three played a good part in my childhood television watching habits.
I’m not diminishing the loss of Ed & Farrah. I’m just adding my two cents as to why the aftermath is playing out like it is & why people shouldn’t be getting their panties in a twist because one is getting more attention than the others.
Whilst you wait for my return, check out my favortie MJ tune click on my twitter link on your right.