‘Janet’ Doc: David Bowie Offered Teenage Michael Jackson Drugs

There have been a number of revelations to surface over the weekend after the release of the new Janet Jackson co-produced two-part docu-series, Janet.

The series premiered on Friday (Jan. 28) and continued on Saturday via A&E and Lifetime.

But perhaps the biggest bit of news is the report that David Bowie offered a teenage Michael Jackson, and his brother Randy Jackson, drugs.

According to the documentary, after the family band, The Jackson 5, gained stardom, the family moved from its original home in Gary, Indiana to the more affluent and central to the entertainment industry, Encino, California. There, the band members were invited to various parties and even hosted their own.

At the parties, the Jacksons, including patriarch Joe Jackson, would invite celebrities to join the festivities, including Ziggy Stardust himself, David Bowie.

According to Randy, who spoke about the events in Janet on camera, Bowie offered him and Michael some illicit substances. Michael and Randy, however, who were both teenagers, declined.

“Michael and I are sitting in one of the other rooms away from the party,” Randy said in the doc. “So Bowie walks in and… he offered us some of what he was doing to get high… We just looked at each other. We were like, ‘No.’ We didn’t know what it was, but it was like, ‘Nah, no thank you.’”

But that’s not all that raised eyebrows in the new documentary.

Elsewhere in the work, Janet said she has forgiven pop star Justin Timberlake for his role in the infamous “Wardrobe Malfunction” at the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show in which Timberlake on purpose or by accident (will we ever know?) tore off a piece of Janet’s top, exposing her breast.

The event nearly ruined her career, caused a great deal of trauma, and launched a thousand ships of anger on both sides of the Janet aisle. Yet, taking the high road, Janet said she’s forgiven him (though thousands on Twitter noted they have not).

This despite the fact that, as writer Jemele Hill notes, it wasn’t so much Timberlake as CBS CEO Les Moonves. Hill wrote on Twitter, “Justin Timberlake is an easy target, but never forget it was former CBS CEO Les Moonves who single-handedly tried to ruin Janet Jackson’s career #JanetJacksonDoc

Elsewhere, Janet also talks about how Michael, with whom she was very close, used to criticize her about her weight.

Janet says her famous brother Michael used to harass her about her weight. While this is what older siblings often do, Janet said it was particularly hurtful. Michael would call her “pig, horse, slaughter hog” during childhood.

“When you have somebody say you’re too heavy, it affects you,” Janet said.

And in a recent interview, Janet talked body positivity.

The ladies today, Janet says, are “comfortable in their skin, in their size, in being full-figured and I love that, as opposed to back in the day. You had to always be thin and always look a certain way. And now it’s all accepted and it is all beautiful and I absolutely love that.”

Janet specifically cited Lizzo, the 33-year-old fabulous full-figured and ubiquitous pop star who tore up the charts with her 2019 album, Cuz I Love You. (Lizzo recently called Janet the Queen of Pop.)

Remembering her signature looks and style, Janet says she didn’t play up more feminine traits. Perhaps because they seemed fraught to her at the time.

“I was never a girly girl. I was always a tomboy,” Janet said. “So it was always about pants, suits, even as an early teenager. I remember when my brothers got their star on the Walk of Fame and other awards they got, and I look back on pictures and I always had on a suit with a tie, a bow tie, or suspenders. Always loving black and never wanting to expose any part of my body, I felt most comfortable to cover it up to here.”

Janet also touched on the infamous album cover for her LP Janet, in which she posed topless with only hands covering her chest (the hands of her then-husband Rene Elizondo). The singer noted that was a difficult moment for her.

“Embracing me,” Janet said to the outlet, “and trying to learn to love me for me, my body, all of that. Trying to feel comfortable in embracing that. Throwing myself in the lion’s den. Just going for it, wanting to do something different.

“It took a lot of work, a lot of work. It was something very tough, very difficult,” she added. “But I’m glad I walked through it. I’m really glad I got in. It was a way of accepting and loving, accepting yourself and your body.”

Unlike many people in her position, Janet said she does not do plastic surgery to look young these days.

“Everyone would always want to stay young and this and that but it’s inevitable. I mean, we’re all going to get there,” she explained. “There’s another road. It’s a little bit of zhuzh. I don’t know when my day is coming, but at some point, it’s going to come and I can choose which path I want to take. I do hope I age gracefully. It’s either a little bit of zhuzh or gracefully.”


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