III DANGEROUS Jackson: The Moonwalker as Sun King

Michael Jackson Dangerous Cover Mark Ryden 1991

Michael Jackson went down in history as the Moonwalker with the symbol of the moon, just to become simultaneously the Sun King by using the symbol oft he sun.

In 1991, Jackson released his DANGEROUS album and the man who danced on the moon as the Moonwalker established himself as the Sun King:

„Similar to paintings of Napoleon or Louis XIV, I want this to feel like a monumental portrait of the King.“

Mark Ryden, the painter of the DANGEROUS Cover

Napoleon ( 1769 – 1821) had a passion for calculated publicity. In 1804, the man crowned himself on his own initiative because he decided it was a good thing to do. The Frenchman, however, probably lacked the creative imagination needed for such a grandiose ceremony and Napoleon copied the pompous script of his coronation from one of his predecessor: Louis XIV.

The French King Louis XIV (1638-1715) was particularly skilled at glowing public relations. The man surrounded himself with the symbol of the sun and had himself called „Sun King“.

Michael Jackson, the Moonwalker about the Sun King and the symbol of the sun: „Great!“

Michael Jackson Dangerous Cover Symbole Moonwalker Sonnenkönig.

Obviously, Louis XIV understood theater better than Napoleon. Louis used Greek gods and selected symbols to build his image. By doing so, Louis became immortal as the Sun King and gained himself the respect from Michael Jackson, who in turn immortalized himself as the Moonwalker.
The Sun King danced with the sun, the Moonwalker danced with the moon.

But since 1986 at the latest, Jackson surrounded himself with the sun like Louis XIV. And with his role of „Captain EO“, Michael Jackson became the Sun King in his own special way (EO refers to the Greek goddess Eo, symbolizing dawn. Dawn is followed by sunrise).
Then in 1991, Jackson presented himself as the sun on his DANGEROUS cover.

In 2011, a book called „48 Laws of Power“ was auctioned. In the book you can find marketing strategies from the Sun King Louis XIV and tips on how to use symbols to play with power. Under Louis‘ instructions on how to choose the sun, the Moonwalker had noted the following:

like me and Military – great on arm Band
Do This
Find an Image“

Michael Jackson 1

The tips from the Sun King Louis in the paragraph marked by Jackson are as follows: 2

„You can play with images like these, weaving visual clues into an eccompassing gestalt (…) Establish a trademark like these to set yourself apart. Then take the game further: Find an image or symbol from the past that will neatly fit your situation, and put it on your shoulders like a cape. It will make you seem larger than life. Because of the light it shines on the other stars which make up a kind of court around it, because of the just and equal distribution of its rays to all alike, because of the good it brings to all places, producing life, joy and action, because of its constancy from which it never varies, I chose the sun as the most magnificent image to represent a great leader.“

Louis XIV 3

The Sun King Louis is said to have been an artist. And also a dancer. Louis loved the theater and controlled it. Napoleon copied the Sun King and his symbols, but did Napoleon actually understand theater?
Michael Jackson, in his art, created images like Louis and Napoleon. And he also understood the theater.

Michael Jackson Dangerous Cover Symbol Sun Sonne König Sonnenkönig. In Rememberg the Time Jackson mit dem Symbol der Sonne auf Shirt und rechtes Bild die Sonnenflügel auf DANGEROUS.

Michael Jackson was a master of uniting opposites in his own public persona. He did not allow himself to be put into a certain category. And in this way he managed to be associated with the symbol of the moon and at the same time choose the sun „as the most magnificent image to represent a great leader“ and therefore became the Sun King too.

l.: Jackson 1991 as egytpian god of the sun in REMEMBER THE TIME
r.: Jackson 1991 as the personified sun
on his DANGEROUS Cover

Michael Jackson Moonwalker als Sonnenkönig Remember The Time Arno Bani 1999_www.partofhistory.de

l.: Michael Jackson as Sun King in ancient Egypt1991 in REMEMBER THE TIME source
r.: The Moonwalker carrying a robe symbolizing the sparkling stars of the firmament. 1999 photographed by Ano Bani

Louis had a passion for Apollo, the Greek god of the sun. The french King had his palace in Versailles designed in such a way that in sunlight it looked as if it had been made out of gold. In addition to his political office, he was also a King of the arts and thus had something in common with „MJ“, who is hidden in the golden dog as the King on the DANGEROUS cover.
This dog, representing the sun and „MJ“ the King of Pop, is sitting opposite to the moon on DANGEROUS.

„The sun as the the most magnificent image to represent a great leader.“

Michael Jackson Dangerous Symbol Sonne. rechts: Remember The Time mit goldenem Shirt und Flügel auf der Brust, rechts: in goldenem Anzug als Anführer einer "Armee" von Tänzern. Live.

l.: Jackson danced the sun in REMEMBER THE TIME 1991 source
and as a leader to open his HIStory concerts starting from 1996 source

The Moonwalker, who as the leader Captain EO brings „light and beauty“ like a Sun King

Michael Jackson Moonwalker Sun King Captain Eo Symbol aRt Filmplakat

Not only in 1991 on the DANGEROUS cover, but already in 1986 Jackson choosed the image of the sun and represented another great leader: Captain EO. source The name „EO“ is derived from Eos, the Greek goddess of dawn. And dawn is followed by sunrise.

„Captain Eo … entrusted with the responsibilty of bringing … light and beauty.“

Michael Jackson 4

Captain EO. Eos = Greek for „dawn“

Jackson’s film directed by George Lucas has been Disney attraction in 4 D since 1986. A science fiction space adventure about the young Captain EO on a mission to save a world from evil. EO, who „brings light and beauty“ fulfills his mission, battles with dark forces (the night) and celebrates a „triumphant victory of good over evil“.
Under the leadership of Captain Eo, light triumphed over darkness.
The sun triumphed in its battle over the night.
But the „dawn“ of Captain EO is only a fragment of all the symbols of the sun and the light with which the Moonwalker had surrounded himself throughout his career.

After the dawn of 1986, the sun is standing at the firmament in 1991

Michael Jackson Dangerous Cover Symbole Moonwalker Sonnenkönig. Captain EO Filmposter links, rechts goldene Flügel unter Jackson auf DAngerous.

l.: 1986 dawn appears on the horizon on the movie poster for „Captain EO“ source
r.: In 1991 the sun is up high in the sky on DANGEROUS.

In 1986, Michael Jackson symbolized „dawn“ as Captain EO.
In 1991, Michael Jackson, the Moonwalker, embodied the sun in its full glory on his DANGEROUS cover and the King of Pop becomes, so to speak, the Sun King.

l.: Presentation Louis XIV, Versailles
r.: Presentation Michael Jackson, Dangerous

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  1. Greene, Robert, THE 48 LAWS OF POWER, Auktionshaus Bonhams. 1998, A Joost Elfers Production. The book was in Jackson’s possession, and the handwritten notes on the Sun King’s image were written by him. In 2011 the book was sold at an auction. A Penguin Book, https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/19036/lot/262/
  2. Greene, Robert, THE 48 LAWS OF POWER, Auktionshaus Bonhams. 1998, A Joost Elfers Production
  3. Greene, Robert, THE 48 LAWS OF POWER, Auktionshaus Bonhams. 1998, A Joost Elfers Production
  4. Jackson, Michael, Moonwalk, 1988, „Captain EO is about transformation and the way music can help to change the world. George came up with the name Captain EO. (Eo is Greek for „dawn.“) The story ist about a young guy who goes on a mission to this miserable planet run by an evil queen. He is entrusted with the responsibility of bringing the inhabitants light and beauty. It’s a great celebration of good over evil.“ , Wilhelm Heyne Verlag, München

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