Once my mind cleared after word reached me that Michael Jackson had died, I wondered how much my 1985 book Trapped: Michael Jackson and the Crossover Dream was going for on Amazon ($14 used; $100 new) and came across a review from ’85 that said, “Marsh… sees Jackson as a Peter Pan figure, afraid of responsibility, trapped inside a self-created fantasy world where he struggles to remain free from such adult realities as sex, politics, and race.” Sounded good, so I read the last chapter for the first time in a long time. It holds up. So we offer it to you here. – Dave Marsh

The Victory tour crashed into the headlines with more fanfare than any pop music event since the Beatles hit the States. It skulked off, fading away in embarrassment and something akin to shame. The stories about Kansas City made the front pages; the ones about Los Angeles were buried back in the amusement section, filler for a slow news Monday.

The two hundred out-of-town journalists who had besieged the Jacksons’ opening night were reduced by the end to a visible complement of two. The tickets that were supposed to be so hard to get at the beginning were as easy to find as BMWs in Westwood in the final days.

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