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The album itself is a solid collection and debuted at No. 1 in the U.K., but true MJ fans, the few of us who are left, bought this record back in 1995 when H.I.S.tory was released. Although most of the tracks on the album are irrefutable classics, Number Ones is now essentially a cruel sidenote to the latest drama in Jackson's life. Between O.J. flashbacks, as I watched Jackson's black Lincoln Navigator cruising down the Las Vegas strip, I couldn't help but wonder if this was all part of The Man's elaborate scheme to reclaim the sacred Beatles catalog (which Jackson owns), or perhaps it's payback for sleeping with Elvis' little girl.
So far, my boy Michael Musto of the Village Voice has summed it up best: "His excesses bond us against a collective enemy - he's much more popular to attack than Iraq - while fueling our desperate desire for the charges to be true. No, we're not rooting for anyone to have been molested, but we want Jackson to be the repository of all our fears so we can agree on something, send him away, and bring on the sunshine." •
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