'Black or White': Jackson delivers eye-popping video

November 15, 1991|By J. D. Considine | J. D. Considine,Sun Pop Music Critic

Michael Jackson has never been one for half-measures, but even by his extravagant standards, the ''Black or White'' video -- which premiered on MTV, BET and the Fox network last night -- is amazing.

Looking like a million bucks (and costing four million), the 11-minute clip is a state-of-the-art stunner -- so spectacular, in fact, that you might not even notice there's a song attached. That may not be the effect he had in mind. But with so much to watch, who had time to listen?

First, there was McCauley Culkin, blasting his TV dad (''Cheers'' star George Wendt) out of the living room with a single guitar chord. Then we saw Michael shaking his groove thing alongside African Bushmen, Balinese temple dancers and Russian Cossacks (he is the world).

And don't forget the bit where the face of a Asian man dissolved into that of a young black woman, which turned into a freckle-faced redhead, and on and on in an astonishing display of human similarity.

True, the a cappella dance routine was a waste of time (though Jackson's zipping his fly after all those crotch-grabs was a hoot), and the "Simpsons" cameo was predictable and pointless, but what the heck.

Michael did want us to get his money's worth, didn't he?

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