Michael Jackson

A sketch from A Bit of Fry & Laurie

Hugh is sitting in a chat show swivel chair, addressing the camera.

Hugh Ladies and gentlemen, this is a genuinely exciting moment for me. We're extremely honoured to have on the show tonight one of those very rare performers - a man who perhaps more than any other can lay claim to the title "superstar". Ladies and gentlemen, will you please welcome, Michael Jackson. Applause and music: "Bad". Stephen enters, shakes hands with Hugh and sits down. Michael, thank you very much indeed for coming on the show.

Stephen Pleasure.

Hugh I know you must be frantically busy.

Stephen Things are a bit hectic at the moment, yes.

Hugh I believe you're about to start work on a new album?

Stephen A new album, that's right. It's absolutely brand new. Even the little hole in the middle is new.

Hugh I love these clothes, by the way.

Stephen Oh thank you, yes, this is a plain Irish Thornproof, very hard wearing, I've had it for some time actually.

Hugh I bet thousands of kids all over the world are trying to copy this look right now.

Stephen Well haha ... perhaps.

Hugh Now Michael, you've been in the music business for ... well most of your life ...

Stephen Just about, yes.

Hugh Right, and of course "Thriller" has sold more copies than any other record, you're without doubt the biggest star of this or perhaps any generation. Have you ever wondered what your life would have been like if none of this had ever happened?

Stephen Yes. Yes, I do. There's no way of knowing this, obviously, but I sometimes think if all this hadn't happened, my life would have been very different indeed.

Hugh Really?

Stephen Well I think so, yes. It's so hard to know, of course.

Hugh Now Michael, I have to ask you this. There has been some speculation over the years that you have, with the aid of plastic surgery, set about altering your appearance.

Stephen Well I don't really pay any attention to that. That's just newspapers, you know ...

Hugh So you absolutely deny it?

Stephen Well I don't think it's even worth denying. All it boils down to is people being jealous of my success. People will say anything.

Hugh Yes. We've got a picture of you here, when you were with the Jackson Five - you'd just signed to Motown, I believe ... Cut to eight-year-old Michael Jackson. You do look a bit different ...

Stephen I was eight years old, for heaven's sake. I mean of course I've changed. We've all changed.

Hugh Absolutely. Well, Michael, I hope that's answered your critics. Now I believe you're actually going to do a song for us now from the new album?

Stephen That's right. This song is called "Move It On Out Girl".

Hugh Ladies and gentlemen - "Move It On Out Girl" - Michael Jackson! Stephen walks over to "performance area" and starts grooving to the intro. He somehow gets on to an exercise treadmill to do the walking on the spot. He apparently sings.

Stephen Move it on out girl,
Don't leave it where it is, girl,
Put it somewhere else, girl,
Don't move it on in.

If you move it on in, girl,
I might have to find another girl,
Who'll give me less trouble girl,
Who'll move it on out ... Stephen does a groovy dance break, during which Hugh comes over and interrupts the song. Sorry, is there a problem?

Hugh No no, Michael, that was very enjoyable. It's just that I couldn't help noticing that you were miming.

Stephen No I wasn't.

Hugh Yes you were.

Stephen No I wasn't. From now on we begin to notice that Stephen is actually miming his answers to Hugh's questions.

Hugh I mean I'm sorry, but you see I just think that this is so disappointing. It's almost impossible for the kids to see an artist doing a live performance nowadays ...

Stephen Look, I know some people do it, but I promise you that miming is simply not the Michael Jackson way. Atishoo! Visually, Stephen's sneeze is about five seconds after we hear it.

Hugh (To camera) It's tragic when stars don't live up to your expectations.

Vox Pop

Stephen No, I was joking. She's as mad as a house.

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