After shocking the world in November when he dangled son Prince Michael II over a balcony in Berlin, Michael Jackson was in need of some serious damage control.
But considering the uproar caused by a documentary that aired Monday in Britain and airs Thursday in the United States, the singer's reputation won't be getting better anytime soon.
"Living With Michael Jackson," which will be shown as part of a special "20/20" on ABC, is a 90-minute film by British journalist Martin Bashir, who followed the star for eight months and was with him at the time of the infamous baby-dangling incident (see "Michael Jackson Calls Baby-Dangling Incident 'A Terrible Mistake'")
In the documentary, Jackson reveals that Prince Michael II, whom he calls "Blanket," was born to a surrogate mother he has never met. It also shows Jackson explaining his love for children, saying that his interest in them is not sexual and that he has slept in bed with many children, including actors Macaulay Culkin, Kieran Culkin and their sisters. Jackson also said that his love for youngsters is so deep that he would "jump off a balcony immediately" if someone announced that all the world's children were dead.
Not to be outdone, NBC will air its own Michael Jackson "Dateline" special on February 17. "Michael Jackson Unmasked" will take a look at the singer's life and career, and will examine how Jackson has altered his looks throughout the years, particularly through plastic surgery.
Real estate magnate Donald Trump, Jackson biographer J. Randy Taraborelli, former publicist Lee Solters and video director Bob Giraldi ("Beat It," "Say Say Say") make appearances.
The "20/20" special airs Thursday on ABC at 8 p.m., and the "Dateline" special airs February 17 on NBC at 10 p.m.