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I-Mockery Pays Tribute To Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' Music Video! The Making Of Thriller!
by: -RoG-

Thriller. We've all heard the song, complete with the classic rap-monologue by Vincent Price himself, but what about the music video? Actually, what I really meant to say was: what about the best music video ever made? (though Journey's "Separate Ways" video gives it a good run for the money). I don't care if you disagree with me about Thriller being the best, because if you do, you're wrong. But one thing that we can certainly all agree on is that Thriller was amazing, especially for its time, and it really changed the way music videos were seen from that point onward. It set the new standard and any big/popular music video that was made afterwards was inevitably compared to it in one way or another. And even despite all of Jackson's bizarre career mishaps over the past decade, no music video has even come close to creating the fan frenzy that Thriller generated.

As a kid, it was like being allowed to see a horror movie that the parents wouldn't normally let you watch. There was so much excitement surrounded by it and everybody was fairly convinced that Michael Jackson would soon be elected President of the World. And while I guess it's good that never happened, it's sad to see what's become of music videos today. You see, Thriller came out back in 1983, when MTV was actually good. It was a real music television network that actually showed music videos instead of shitty sitcoms about spoiled teens and their struggles to overcome further pampering.

This brought a question in my mind: since MTV has gone to hell, how many kids haven't actually seen or will never see Thriller? That thought is probably scarier than the music video itself. But damnit, I'm at least gonna do my part by paying tribute to it because everybody should see Thriller in its entirety at least once. So here it is; my recap of the video for Michael Jackson's Thriller!

OCCULT = AWESOME

Ah yes, the disclaimer. After filming Thriller, Michael Jackson added this to the start of the video which, if you ask me, only made it more exciting. Disclaimers make everything more exciting don't they? That's why nowadays they're used less as an actual warning and more as a marketing tool. It doesn't matter what the disclaimer says, just as long as it's there in plain sight it will get certain kinds of people excited. The only word in this particular disclaimer that mattered to me was "occult" - which for a very young horror fan, loosely translated to "awesome".

Claymation words can be scary too

Even the title sequence of Thriller was scary at the time, what with those deep red claymation letters creeping around on the screen. When I first saw it, I was sure that those letters were going to jump right out at me for a quick scare, but they never did. Still, any time I watch Thriller I keep my eye on those letters... I just don't trust 'em.

Seriously, I'm outta gas! Seriously, I'm outta gas!

It all starts off back in the 50's (well, the car and the clothing would have you think that at least) with Michael Jackson and his girlfriend (Ola Ray) pulling over to the corner of the road. Michael informs his lady that he's out of gas, but she doesn't believe him. She's sure that it's all a trick so that he can "park" with her. But when they start walking, presumably to a gas station, she realizes he really was out of gas and apologizes for not believing him.

I'm not like other guys. In fact, soon I'm gonna turn white.

Michael stops walking and looks her dead in the eye and says, "I hope you like me... the way I like you," in a dead serious tone. It's not the kind of thing that would make a girl feel at ease, but instead would have her guessing if she was dating a psychopath. The way he's staring at her, you'd think he was trying to bore a hole in her head with his eyes. But this is a movie, so of course, she's not creeped out at all by this and is very eager to be his girl.

He then informs her, "I have something I want to tell you. I'm not like other guys. I mean, I'm different." Yeah well that goes without saying, but he's speaking about something a bit more supernatural...

howl at the mooooooon! howl at the mooooooon!

Up in the sky, a cloud moves on by to reveal a full moon and Michael Jackson doubles over in pain. And that's when it happens... one of those terrifying moments that is forever engrained in the minds of any child who saw Thriller. His grisly transformation into a werewolf begins and the dialogue between the two of them during this is impeccable.

GO AWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYYY!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

FINALLY she wises up!
AAAAAAAHHHHH!!! OK I'M LEAVING NOW!!!

Amazing dialogue, eh? The script supervisor had to love his/her job during that scene.

I gotta give credit where credit is due; Rick Baker did a hell of a job on the werewolf transformation scene. Definitely one of the best ever put to film... but that's not too surprising since he also worked on An American Werewolf in London alongside John Landis.

ME HATE NATURE! RAAAAAAAAAR! ME HATE NATURE! RAAAAAAAAAR!

The girl runs away when the werewolf transformation is almost complete, giving herself a whopping 10 second head-start on the bloodthirsty creature. Now that he's a wolf, he goes chasing after her and for no reason whatsoever, knocks down a tree with one mighty animalistic swing of his hairy arm. Hey, werewolves are out of control and they do things like that.

PEEK-A-BOO!

They also howl at the moon too. What's more impressive, is that as noisy as Michael is in werewolf form, he's still able to jump from out of nowhere like a ninja and catch the girl completely off guard. You'd think she would've heard him coming, right?

Hey, he said he wasn't like other guys. Maybe next time you'll listen. Hey, he said he wasn't like other guys. Maybe next time you'll listen.

From that point on, it's clear that the girl is finished and just before we get to see the wolf tear her to shreds, it cuts to the inside of a packed movie theater.

Oh but there's more!
Click to continue to page 2 of the
Michael Jackson's Thriller tribute!

Reader Comments

Ninja in training
Jun 26th, 2009, 12:32 AM
Rip Michael.... your moonwalking with jesus now T_T
Riot Control
Jun 26th, 2009, 01:05 AM
Despite not being a huge Michael Jackson's fan, I don't disagree with the fact that he simply was the greatest dancer of his time and this music video will be the best testament of that in his behalf.

So be it. Rest in peace, dude.
The Magnificent Bastard
Jun 26th, 2009, 01:13 AM
I just now found out he was dead.

Even though he was just a shell of his former self, it's still pretty sad.

Hmmm, I wonder if now he really will come back as a zombie.
High Priest of Burbank
Jun 26th, 2009, 03:12 AM
This video is a lot creepier knowing he is now dead.
Destructo Bear
Jun 26th, 2009, 10:33 AM
you know the one in the white to mjs left? 2nd zombie close-up? i know her daughter. went to school with her. anyways, its really sad that he died but i can tell you, ALL the kids i was in school with for tyhe past year have seen it. our LA teacher brought it in. that was awesome.
Forum Chaos Lord
Jun 26th, 2009, 11:43 AM
Twenty Years hence, this remains the best music video ever created.

Fare thee well, Michael. You will be missed.
Member
Jun 26th, 2009, 02:24 PM
This video is so great, the inevitable Indian rip-off is still awesome

pickled
Jun 27th, 2009, 01:53 AM
Thriller was the last good thing Michael ever did.
Cat Scratch Fever!
Jun 27th, 2009, 03:40 PM
Oh man does this video bring back memories! I remember when I first saw this. I was with my mom and my brothers at a neighbor's house across the street one night. I miraculously commandeered the remote control which given that I was only 5 at the time was a big rarity. After flipping through the channels for the fun of it, I stopped dead in my tracks at the sight of Michael Jackson on MTV. This was at a time when I was still riding high on his other two songs Billie Jean and Beat It. I couldn't pass up the chance to see what was MJ gonna do next. He certainly didn't disappoint. It was thriller, my first time viewing it and when he turned into that werewolf man I was terrified I couldn't even move and strangely couldn't help but be fascinated at what I was watching. From there the music kicked in and I was hooked. Thriller became my number one MJ song next to Smooth Criminal and after that experience I was hooked on Halloween for life. I loved the song so much that I had my parents play it over and over again in the car while they drove us around trick or treating at various neighborhoods. Good times I tells ya. Michael Jackson will be missed for sure. His whole life was one awesome and sometimes bizzare performance. Here's hoping that you are up there somewhere moonwalking on the clouds as only you can. RIP MJ.
Forum Virgin
Jun 27th, 2009, 10:33 PM
holy crap! i remember watching this when i was 8. amazing! the choreography is so great that (no joke) when i went to air force basic training, our training instructor was teaching us how to march and he used thriller as a reference on how to coordinate with your fellow dancers, or in our case, marchers. and if the military uses thriller as a reference, it shows how good mj was. this video and other right after it show that you can make a video to complement a good song, unlike today, where you have rappers making videos about bling bling and throwing cash and cars and hos around. in other words, it seems that videos are only for image purposes and the music has been relegated to a secondary role, which doesnt help the fact that today's music sucks ass. and yes, mtv sucks. even its sibling vh1, which i had in such high esteem, is just horrible. as for mj, his personal lifestyle might have been questionable, what with the pedophile accusations, the surgeries, hanging out with a chimp, and all, but there's no question, the man was a great performet. rip!!!
Is it fun yet?
Jun 28th, 2009, 04:07 AM
I miss Michael. Although he will make a way creepier zombie now.
Forum Virgin
Jun 28th, 2009, 07:35 AM
As much as I love Thriller and MJ, there's only one video worthy of being MTV's most played, and it's Sledgehammer. That having been said, Peter Gabriel can't dance anywhere near as well as Michael lol
OH GOD
Jun 28th, 2009, 09:18 AM
he can now
Forum Virgin
Jun 30th, 2009, 05:30 PM
I have saved small children everwhere...
☆☆☆☆☆
Jun 30th, 2009, 06:44 PM
I have heard many MJ jokes, but that deserves a ban for being the weakest.
OH GOD
Jul 1st, 2009, 02:38 AM
ehh if it was in the main forums i'd think about it but idc about the article threads

i'm more annoyed by the misspelling of the name "michael", tbh
"It's all so appalling."
Jul 6th, 2009, 08:43 PM
wow! you truly are a funny man! and, yes, Thriller was f***ing awesome!
after enough bourbon ...
Jul 8th, 2009, 01:55 AM
MJ's music may not have done it for me, but his music videos were things of art and beauty. Thriller was and is still the yardstick against which all others are measured.
Ultimate Buzzkill
Aug 1st, 2009, 06:45 PM
There's a group of people here in New Orleans who dressed up as zombies last Hallowe'en, set up a boombox on Frenchmen St., and re-enacted the zombie dance scene from Thriller.

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