The world's next Thriller?

I’m sitting here watching the live Michael Jackson memorial service on TV (I didn’t plan to ... I just got sucked in), and I’m wondering who’s next. Who will be the next unfortunate, blessed, gifted, tragic, flawed human being we catapult to a level of superstardom we don’t yet know exists? Who will we spend 20 or 30 years exalting and denouncing, heckling and applauding? Who will garner this type of massive, star-studded, televised memorial service filled with famous faces talking about a man many probably hadn’t had direct contact with in years?

I wonder who will mesmerize my boys the way MJ’s Moonwalk mesmerized my friends and I. I wonder who Kostyn and Evan will dance to in the living room when they’re 10 and still be dancing to in their 20s, and even 30s. For my mother, it was Elvis. For me, Michael. I can’t imagine another artist following in those footsteps.

Who will the world chew up and spit out and grab again and again, until the artist has become less character and more caricature, until his demons are uncovered and his world crumbles from within? Whose oh-so-very-unconventional home will be viewed as a spectacle, and then a shrine?

In today’s world, where you can be a celebrity for doing absolutely nothing noteworthy, where you can be famous for having no talent, how bright must a star shine to stand out? How innovative must an artist be to come up with something that really does thrill us like Thriller? Are there Moonwalk-type moves left to show the world? Is it possible to once again reinvent the very definition of entertainment the way Michael Jackson did, again and again?

I wonder.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It doesn't seem possible, does it?