Some things you just can't ignore. Traditionally I know I'm supposed to slag off horror movie sequels, list people I would rather be, write bizarre fiction, give opinions on crappy C64 games. It isn't really my place to analyse games like 'Moonwalker' for the Sega Genesis. But after playing it on an emulator, I just felt I'd be doing the world a disservice if I didn't kick this game in the teeth.

So, here it is, a simulation of Michael Jackson's life, in which he must fight his way past hordes of social workers to get to innocent little girls and thrust his crotch in their faces. Ha, ha, ha, I'm just messing with you.

Or am I?


Yeah, yeah, I know, Michael Jackson and paedophilia jokes are passe. Well, if passe offends you you'd better click the 'back' button, 'cos I have enough paedophilia jokes here for a convention on the subject.

The first thing we learn about MJ is that, by the amazing power of an animation which either has fifteen various frames missing or was drawn up by Bubbles, he can turn into a car. Obviously this is to make transporting the innocent little children he captures slightly easier. Two in the front, two in the back, and one in the boot tied up and gagged. However, when it comes to battling the bad guys, MJ prefers to revert to his human form, perhaps because he's a good sport. But if that is so, what's with the glitter?

Whenever MJ does one of his phenomenally gay kicks or punches, little sparkly bits of glitter fly off, and if they come into contact with enemies, said enemies go flying off the screen like they were punched by Spider-man or something. Perhaps they're so startled by the sequins dropping off MJ's jacket they feel they should depart immediately and phone the tabloids to let them know what shabby conditions he keeps his clothing in. Most enemies will run up to you and try to punch you as soon as they meet you, which is fair enough, considering what MJ is planning to do with their little daughters. Some enemies, however, have guns, which they will shoot you with. Unfortunately they seem to have steel rods in their arms which prevent them from aiming, so they can be foiled by the cunning use of ducking.

In the first level you're attacked by countless clones of encyclopaedia salesmen while running around some nightclub or something, and behind certain doors you'll find the little girls, crying their eyes out in the knowledge that Michael Jackson - or 'Great Satan' as he is sometimes known in primary school circles - has broken into their house and is coming for them, just as their mothers warned would happen if they didn't eat all their vegetables. As soon as you find the little girls they say 'Michael!' in the same way a homosexual man would say 'Jeffrey Dahmer! Well I never!', before disappearing off the screen on a glowing blue rocket skateboard to be taken to MJ's harem in the bouncy castle in his back garden. All the little girls wear red dresses, carry teddies and have blonde hair in 'Heidi of the Alps'-style pigtails, so I assume either the same people who are cloning the encyclopaedia salesman also have a 'little girl' unit, or it's always just the same girl who keeps escaping from MJ's garden. I guess that answer's good for female empowerment, so we'll assume it's that one.

Also in the nightclub level MJ finds himself faced by a very curious cadre of women. These beasts dress up like 1950's burlesque dancers and when you try to walk past them they grab you and won't let you go until you kick them in the teeth, at which point they become docile again. What are the motives of these women? I have three suppositions. To illustrate them, here are the three possible things I imagine these women say when they grab MJ:

Unhand me, wench.

A: Eeeeek! It's Michael Jackson! Please give me an autograph! Actually, do you have any autographs left over from the time when you didn't suck?

B: Eeeeek! It's Michael Jackson! I'll do anything you want, just leave my daughter alone! Take me instead! Please, we just got her that red dress!

C: Excuse me, I seem to have gotten epoxy resin on my hands. Do you mind if I wipe it off on your gay jacket? Oh dear me, I seem to be stuck. Perhaps some friction will loosen me. Would you mind kicking me in the teeth?

Anyway, at the end of the level, once you've captured the little girl the required number of times, a monkey in a red sweater appears and jumps on your head. Jesus, MJ, save it for when you're out of enemy territory at least. When you take the little primate slowly discovering its sexuality to a certain place in the level it leaps away in fright and a strange man appears, says you'll never catch him, and leaves. I think he was one of those homeless men who say really wild and unpredictable things like 'I CAN SMELL YOUR SOUL!' who came in through one of the many unlocked doors. After he leaves more hordes of encyclopaedia salesmen appear, who MJ must beat up. When they're all gone the little girl reappears, perhaps to check if her army succeeded in destroying her tormentor, and he walks up to her and thrusts his crotch in her face as if to say 'Nope, bitch. Now get on your knees and show me how much you love me'. After this, the scene mercifully fades out.

Arr, matey.

Refreshed, MJ arrives on the next level - the streets. Apparently the clone people got bored of the encyclopaedia salesmen - doesn't everyone? - and decided to populate the streets with clones of pirates instead. They wear red bandanas! And they sit up on roofs going 'aharr'. Also, you occasionally meet clones of Boba Fett who try to shoot you with an automatic weapon, a little pointless since these guys seem to have steel rods in their arms too, until they get a faceful of glitter and must hurry to somewhere really manly like a building site or a Yorkie advertisement in order to be de-gayed.

All of which is leading up to the third level, a forest place to which the little girl has fled in order to hide in bushes and - for some reason - inside graves. Fortunately for her the friendly zombies that populate the area decide to team up to protect her from Great Satan, who arrives shortly to show these walking dead the meaning of glitter. This is all padding before I make the ultimate revelation, of course. After the zombies get hit once by one of MJ's glitter attacks, they start doing ballet. I'm not kidding. They begin leaping around joyfully like it's the opening night of Swan Lake. So either this was a special part of the forest where all the zombies are resurrected ballet dancers, or this is just one royally fucked up game, which I think was already pretty clear.

Brains! Wheee!

This was about as far as I could get before my opinion on this game was fully constructed, so here I'm afraid this article must conclude. What have we learned on our voyage of discovery? Well, we've learned that Michael Jackson is a demigod on earth with the power to control the unstoppable force of glitter. We've learned that he kicks prostitutes in the face if they get between him and his prey. We've learnt that monkeys enjoy sitting on his face. We've learnt that zombies enjoy ballet, and homeless people are difficult to catch.

In summary, then, this game could only be gayer if it was fronted by Richard Simmons in rainbow tights.

Quality Rating: 48%

One-Word Summary: "Gay"

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