national

Michael Jackson found loyal, generous fans in Japan

23 Comments

Despite years of child molestation accusations and deep financial difficulties, Michael Jackson could always count on one nation for unquestioning fan loyalty and lucrative advertising deals — Japan.

His death in California on Thursday at age 50 shook the country. Many Japanese TV channels switched to special programming and a major Japanese online retailer was flooded with orders for Jackson's recordings. The top government spokesman and other ministers expressed their condolences.

"He was a superstar. It is an extremely tragic loss. But it is fantastic he was able to give so many dreams and so much hope to the people of the world," said Health Minister Yoichi Masuzoe.

Jackson chose Japan — the biggest pop music market in Asia — for his first public appearance after he was acquitted of molestation charges in 2005, a delicate period in his career when his marketability had started to tank elsewhere.

Appearing at a ceremony in Tokyo in 2006, Jackson choked up before fans screaming "I love you" as he accepted a Japan MTV "Legend Award." He later visited an orphanage on a trip largely untarnished by the bad press he had received back home.

Japan has long been famous for the royal treatment it gives visiting foreign musicians, and the courteous and deferential coverage it gives to American celebrities. Reports of Jackson's court proceedings didn't fascinate the Japanese as much as his high-spending late-night shopping spree at an electronics store and his visits to Tokyo Disneyland after the park had closed.

Steve McClure, the former Tokyo bureau chief for Billboard magazine, said Japanese fans are fiercely loyal, even with stars who have fallen from grace elsewhere, and that was likely an attraction for Jackson.

He often visited Japan and showed a lot of affection for his fans there; he often became tearful when met with emotional displays from cheering Japanese crowds.

© AP

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

23 Comments
Login to comment

Really, and he was aquitted because?? Oh yes he paid off the young boy. Found alot of affection in japan?? Hmm come on guys how many jokes can we get out of this article?? And just for the record I like his music but the whole alligation thing was as suspect as OJ...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

His problem was to be in the public eye. There were worse wackos wherever.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Even freaks can develop s following...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The top government spokesman and other ministers expressed their condolences.

Wow - Japan is in good hands with muppets running the show like those guys. Most likely just a desperate grab for popularity with the impending election. Keep working on the big issues affecting the public, guys.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Reports of Jackson’s court proceedings didn’t fascinate the Japanese

Because Japanese are more open minded and accepting of pedophilia...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wow - Japan is in good hands with muppets running the show like those guys. Most likely just a desperate grab for popularity with the impending election. Keep working on the big issues affecting the public, guys.

It's true though that Japanese people just looove the American celebrities. Its quite "normal" that a Health Minister made these commnents, as long as he is Japanese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He gave us some great music. Just remember, nobody is perfect.

Thanks Mike.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've seen interviews with many musicians especially past ones who say they enjoy Japan because once they like your music they are pretty much fans forever.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

so bbqtatsujin, I guess the kids he molested and robbed of their childhood innocence should just shut up and thank him for having number 1 singles? By the way, his music was crap pop drivel for masses of people who value fame over quality.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

so bbqtatsujin, I guess the kids he molested and robbed of their childhood innocence should just shut up and thank him for having number 1 singles? By the way, his music was crap pop drivel for masses of people who value fame over quality.

Couldn't have said it better myself.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You people are stupid he's dead and stop bring that dumb ass court case he was aquitted. he not mentaly stright he never touched or harmed any of those boys remeber he had no childhood so all this bulls**t about him and this stupid court case needs to stop MJ was a damn good pop artist probley one of the ebst we will ever have heard.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You will find many Americans to Canadains were NOT fans of MJ. True he had a lot of snap & go in him plus some of his songs will be used by others, but in reality not all us North Americans were ones to adore him.

He was like as part of the Jackson Five & like as a young man before he went out of his mind.

I am noticing this on many of the 'net boards & already there are a maze of jokes brought up about him or his strang outlook on life that he did not want to become an old person.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There will always be the silly debate about if he was guilty or not, but who cares. I'll only remember him because of all the great things he did in entertaining the world in his music and awesome dancing. No-one can dance like him. God bless you MJ.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Great musician, moonwalk was cool... but he was a Pedophile! and he bribed the victim. Call me old fashioned but a man who hurts children shouldn't be praised.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tsk tsk tsk, the same people who will defend George Bush for lying about WMD despite all obvious evidence will crucify Michael Jackson despite the official acquittal ? What sheer hypocrisy!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Smythe. "Many Americans to Candaians were not fans of MJ" seriously?? Really? is that really true in your world? I dont know what side of the country you live in currently but thats a load of bull crap. And I'm sure many of the net boards you visit are the end all be all of information. Well on the net boards I'VE been on people are talking about how upset they are and how they have to comfort their children because this news was upsetting to them.

And of course they make fun of MJ, not new people, hell many a comedian and musical artist have made fun of good ole mike and how he's trying to be white or his weird looking nose so I dont see how that sums into your theory about not many being fans. How the hell were his upcoming shows sold out and him not have many fans?

I'm sorry but reading through all these comments reminded me of why I quit coming here, I know many of you have no love for MJ but for the people who loved him dearly this is shameful and disrespectful. The man is dead. People at least show consideration for them and put into practice what your momma should have taught you when you were younger, "if you don't have anything nice to day, don't say anything at all" SMH....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

despite all obvious evidence will crucify Michael Jackson despite the official acquittal

His admission that he found it OK to share his bed with children really creeped me out ... kind of like smoke and fire.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

firebabe, suggest you stay on the "I am an idiot and forgive child molesters" websites instead of a discussion of news events website like this one.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My momma told me that all it takes for bad people to be triumphant is for good people to do nothing..........go ahead and love Mikey if you want.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Lol at the pedo lynch mob.

Michael Jazzy J was acquitted of all charges!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Despite MJ's acquittal, many people as demonstrated by the comments posted here will never believe he was innocent. Whether you like MJ or not, one thing you can't dispute is that his music made a very big impact on the entertainment scene. Let the man rest in peace.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Still sad Michael Jackson is dead... If Michael would get all this positive attention when he was still alive, I think he wouldn't feel sad... Anyways I will never forget him!!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Every second you think about him, you are wasting your time.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites