With the passing of Michael Jackson this week, the world has lost the greatest musical entertainer of the last quarter century. If you were a child in the 80’s and didn’t own a copy of Thriller, you were either deaf, your parents were broke or you got busted trying to steal a copy from the record store and got placed in juvenile hall. Stealing music was a lot harder back then when it was big, bulky records and not MP3 files, kids.
While Jackson revolutionized the music industry in the early 80’s, he also provided inspiration to one infamous, ex-WWF wrestler. In honor of Michael’s passing, here’s a lighthearted repost of an induction I wrote a few years ago about Michael Saxon, the world’s greatest wrestling Michael Jackson impersonator. R.I.P. to Michael Jackson, the King Of Pop.
The King Of Pop.
The mere mention of the name brings different meanings to various people. To some he is a musical pioneer, beloved for his revolutionary contributions to the world of music, as well as being the father of the modern-day music video. To others, he is the butt of every albino and pedophile joke known to man, and the life source for every talkshow monologue from now until the year 2027. However, forget about all those platinum albums, multiple Grammy awards, and all that knee-slappin’ molestation humor. In my mind, I will always remember Jacko for one reason and one reason only. He inspired one of the most infamous jobbers of all time. That’s right kiddies, hop out of those Neverland Valley Ranch beds you’re sharing, and crank up that old worn-out copy of Thriller you have, because today we’re paying tribute to The King Of Job himself – Michael Saxon.
In the summer of 1985, Vince McMahon’s mainstream promotion of the WWF was in fullswing. The Rock N’ Wrestling angle had been a huge cross-promotional hit with MTV, and numerous musicians had shown up on WWF events. Throughout the 80’s, everyone from Liberace to Cyndi Lauper to Ozzy Osbourne all made appearances. Don’t ask me why they showed up, but they did. Perhaps the British Bulldogs really needed the support of a drunk, coked out Ozzy to bring the tag belts home at WrestleMania 2. Who knows?
But for all the stars Vinnie had show up, he was never able to get THE pop star of the 80’s, Mr. Michael Jackson. Honestly though, I think he could care less about MJ showing up. Because in August of 1985, right before Vinnie Mac’s very eyes, enhancement talent as he knew it was about to get “Bad.” Literally.
Hailing from Atlantic City, New Jersey, Michael Saxon definitely looked like he was gonna add some funk to the WWF All Star Wrestling tapings. Who was this flashy newcomer walking down the aisle, people wondered? He definitely spared no expense on his MJ imitation ring jacket, that’s for sure. That’s right, Saxon had on that hideous blue sequinned one that Jackson wore to the 1984 Grammys. Yes, the one from the infamous night an emotionally and ethically torn MJ brought both barely legal Brooke Shields and a dwarf who looked like he was five years old, Emmanuel “Webster” Lewis, as his dates for the evening.
Regardless of who was wearing the jacket – either Jackson or Saxon – it immediately made that person look like the General in charge of some sort of butt-pirate brigade.
Once in the ring, that’s when things took a disappointing turn for the worse. Dressed like he was, you expected Saxon to dance and groove like his idol. No dice. The closest thing to dancing we would get was Michael spastically shaking his head back and forth.
Honestly, I don’t know if he was attempting to shake his thang, or if it was a last ditch effort to remove excess Jeri-Curl juice from his hair before his match started. When Saxon finally stopped getting jiggy and removed his jacket, things went from bad to worse.
Yep, it appeared ol’ MS hadn’t been paying too much attention to the “Man In The Mirror,” cause he was packing over 240 lbs on a 5’10” frame. In fact, with his nappy hairdo, thick mustache, and big gut, Saxon looked less like Michael Jackson and more like a supersized “Superfreak” Rick James.
When it came time to wrestling, Saxon hit the ground faster than a helicopter launched, Ethiopia bound bag of Jackson supported “USA For Africa” rice and corn meal. And when Saxon went down, he stayed down. Arguably, I’m not sure if I have ever seen a wrestler get beat down so such without getting a single move in. And in the rare occasion he was on the offensive side, well, he would muck things up to the point of just being plain offensive. In June of 1986, after a year of WWF defeats, and in a move that Jackson’s record sales would imitate a decade later, Michael Saxon completely vanished.
He’s been gone for 18 years now, and it still seems hard to fathom. A wrestler that impersonated Michael Jackson!?! Who was he? Where did he disappear to? There is no information on the internet whatsoever about him. He was so mysterious and unknown, half the time the WWF called him “Michael Saxton.” In retrospect, the Elvis impersonating Honky Tonk Man bombed big time as a face. With a heel turn, he became one of the biggest stars of the 80’s. What if Saxon had done the same? Perhaps he could’ve been the greatest Intercontinental champ of all time. And if you wanted to mirror the controversial Jacko of the 90’s, the sex-filled Attitude era would’ve been perfect. Led by Vince Russo, Saxon could’ve spent the better part of the weekly Raw trying to entice Max Mini and Dink into bed with warm milk and cookies. I’m telling you, the WWF/WWE were sitting on a goldmine, they just didn’t realize it.
Michael Saxon – definitely bad. But to me, he is the most thrilling jobber of all-time. Long live the King….Of Job.