(left to right) Michael Jackson singing at home in 1972, on the set of the “Thriller” video in 1983, in a portrait taken in 1983 and performing in New York City on Sept. 10, 2001.
The news media has been buzzing (to put it mildly) about the unexpected June 25 death of Michael Jackson. Newsstands are overflowing with magazines featuring the King of Pop on the cover, including gossip magazines like Us Weekly and news glossies like Time. While it may be tempting to snatch up every cover as MJ memorabilia, there is one tribute cover that, for me, rises above them all: Entertainment Weekly.
Entertainment Weekly’s Michael Jackson tribute issue is an absolute must-have for any music fan. Four different covers are available, all depicting Jackson and, inevitably, his transformation throughout the years. The issue features pages of photos in a “His Life in Pictures” section, an in-depth look at MJ’s Jackson 5 and solo albums and an “ultimate playlist” of his songs (I was inspired to compile my own Michael Jackson playlist, myself). The issue also ranks his top 10 music videos, with 1979’s “Rock with You” coming out on top, and includes a touching essay written by Steven King about his memories of briefly working with Jackson on a never-released music video for “Ghosts,” which King described as the “scariest music video ever.”
The issue gets bonus points for having multiple covers. I love when multiple covers are released and I get to choose my favorite – in this case, the Thriller cover.
But EW is going to face some competition soon enough. Rolling Stone’s MJ tribute issue hits newsstands on July 10, and is sure to be a similarly memorable issue. It is currently available for preorder for $8.99. So keep your eyes peeled, but in the meantime, enjoy your issue of EW (you can order copies at EW.com).