"The Way You Make Me Feel" - A Problematic Vibe?

mj_frenzy

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Re: Can The Way You Make Me Feel be seen as 'rapey'?

I think the fact that the female character (Tatiana Thumbtzen) hugs him at the end of that video (but also on the cover of the single) puts to rest any theories that suggest the video is about (or promotes) rape.
 

MJTruth

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Re: Can The Way You Make Me Feel be seen as 'rapey'?

I think the fact that the female character (Tatiana Thumbtzen) hugs him at the end of that video (but also on the cover of the single) puts to rest any theories that suggest the video is about (or promotes) rape.

Yeah the video is of its time and clearly she wasn't offended by it but people like to be offended on other peoples behalf ?
 

83magic

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I take my time to make concise arguments to support my opinion, and I get ignored and dismissed as a sensitive snowflake (?!) don't even have the decency to respond to me directly..

I tried to give this place a chance, but it seems that free objective thought is not welcome here.

that's okay. I've been a fan since I was 3 years old. I watch and listen to michael everday. I don't need to be part of a community to enjoy him.

I would ask for my account to be deleted but that seems to be against policy...
 

terrell

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If anyone is getting mad at a video, he/she needs to get a life. It is just a video. Are these people upset with this video upset with rappers and gun violence in those video? I b et you they are not. What about talking dogs, cats, chickens, etc. I guess that is animal cruelity. People are going to take this action too far until it is going to get a backlash. People need to use some logic and stop overacting to everything and trying to find drama in everything.
 

terrell

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I take my time to make concise arguments to support my opinion, and I get ignored and dismissed as a sensitive snowflake (?!) don't even have the decency to respond to me directly..

I tried to give this place a chance, but it seems that free objective thought is not welcome here.

that's okay. I've been a fan since I was 3 years old. I watch and listen to michael everday. I don't need to be part of a community to enjoy him.

I would ask for my account to be deleted but that seems to be against policy...
Honey, stay on board. What you are experiencing, we all have experience (Heck I was given one warning back in 2004- and I join in 2004). People are passion in their views and you can just agree to disagree but do not let that run you from the board. Stay and enjoy. That is what debating and discussing issue are all about.
 

soulmum

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I take my time to make concise arguments to support my opinion, and I get ignored and dismissed as a sensitive snowflake (?!) don't even have the decency to respond to me directly..

I tried to give this place a chance, but it seems that free objective thought is not welcome here.

that's okay. I've been a fan since I was 3 years old. I watch and listen to michael everday. I don't need to be part of a community to enjoy him.

I would ask for my account to be deleted but that seems to be against policy...

'm sorry you took offense but I didn't reply directly to you because my comment was a generalisation. Please don't feel the need to leave - it's just discussion - some people may disagree with you but it doesn't make your statements invalid.
 

barbee0715

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@Michael's Essence: Don't leave. When I get home tonight from work I'll respond too. I have the perspective of a woman in their twenties who watched the video premiere back in 87.
Quite similar to yours.
 

ProductOfLoveliness

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I wanted to chime in too and say to Michael's Essence; please stay here, your posts are really good to read. Just be open to the fact that some people may disagree with you, but they don't mean it personally. It's only the internet, after all.

I was interested in the point that you say that Michael had such a 'wholesome' image before Bad...remember, this is the same guy that grabbed his crotch and thrusted his hips whilst he danced - even before Thriller was released. The whole 'sexual gesturing' thing was taking place way before 1987.

To stay on topic - no, I agree with most people on here. Take the video for what it is - lighthearted, fun and playful.
 

KOPV

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Can I see how people in 2018 would look back and feel a specific way about it? Sure!

But that's not the intent of the video, it does have heavy influence of men and women roles in that time.. if that is offensive to someone than ok...

My personal opinion, people should take it as it is and in some ways need to stop being overly sensitive to things.. it's just another example of our culture getting soft.. I am 100% equality for all people (sex, race, sexual preference etc.) But we cant put protective glasses on everyone and be this perfect PC world.

Twymmf is a great video.. dont like it, dont watch it
 
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Sounding Heartbeats

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I have an interesting and borderline self-contradictory position on this topic.

First of all, let me clarify that I am an extremely new MJ fan. I never heard his music growing up, except for ABC in a PBS Kids promo and a badly botched version of Bad in a children's play. I first really heard him a few years ago. He soon became my favorite music artist, but it's only this year that I actually started looking into him more deeply - learning about him, watching videos and performances, etc. (Sadly, I used to be afraid to learn more about him because of the bad things I had heard, but I'm so glad I overcame that and learned the truth about who he was.)

Also, let me say as an aside that, while I may have extremely different opinions from you, Michael's Essence, I still enjoy your posts very much! You offer a very interesting perspective that I appreciate. I hope you don't leave. :(

The Way You Make Me Feel is one of my favorite MJ songs. In fact, if I absolutely had to choose one song from him to declare my favorite, there's a good chance that would be it. It actually has something of a deep meaning for me, because something about the song just seems to capture such a pure sense of taking delight in another individual. You could argue that the lyrics are kind of shallow, but the emotion conveyed by the song, to me personally, is almost the essence of pure, simple love. It's hard to explain, and I'm sure to some it will seem silly. But to me, this feeling of encapsulating love that this song gives me is so strong that I've occasionally associated this song with God Himself. That might seem absurd, and maybe it is. But for whatever reason, that's just the vibe this song gives me, even if the specific lyrics shouldn't generate such a response.

I also think I'll mention that the Bad era is without question my favorite MJ era (though I love 'em all, of course). It has "edginess", but I think the edginess is paired with MJ still fundamentally being a "good boy" in the end. The Bad short film is entirely about standing up for what's right, after all. And I love that combination.

But as for the video itself...well, that's where things get a little more complicated for me. I totally love this video in most ways, but yet, I totally can see where the idea of it seeming like it looks like stalking or harassing come from. That's not to say that I completely agree with this assessment, but I can't honestly say I completely disagree with it either. I can see that this interpretation was NOT the intent of the video in any way, and the video certainly can be interpreted in the playful, innocent way that was intended, and it can be argued that that interpretation makes more sense, but, to put it simply, I see how this video can be taken the wrong way.

The point is, I can see where this video is questionable. NOT outright wrong, but can be interpreted in an unfortunate way a little too easily for my liking. It can also be interpreted in a completely innocent, playful way, which I'm sure was the intent, but the point is, I can't say the other interpretation is unreasonable - in fact, it's unfortunately pretty easy to see.

My ultimate assessment of the video is actually rather positive. It's one of those cases in which it's actually worth it to look past (which is not the same as refusing to acknowledge, or approving of) what is "questionable". If I choose to interpret everything in the video in the most innocent light, I see a lovely, simple story of a man eagerly pursuing the object of his affection, and not against her will at all. The intended story, which mostly comes through, is simply one of Michael considering this woman to be very much worth pursuing and doing so, and of her receiving his affection positively, in the midst of some playful "tug-of-war". There are some missteps that get in the way of that and can cause a bad interpretation, but I think it can be seen that that's not the real intention of the video, if that makes sense. Though I must be clear that I can't blame people for not being able to look past that.

In fact, okay, more melodramatic spiritual stuff, but to me, the video along with the song can be taken to encapsulate in general the idea of pursuing something eagerly because of how deeply worthwhile it is to you, and to me, this can, again, even be applied to God Himself. Once I was sitting in church, a little frustrated thinking about my attempts to pursue God. But then, this song and video came to mind as a symbol of what that should be like. Michael loves the girl deeply and takes delight in her, and so he delights to pursue her. And the girl, in turn, delights to be pursued. Perhaps both God and His follower can play either role in the story, of the pursuer and the pursue-ee. It can also symbolize a diligent pursuit of something extremely loved and worthwhile in general, in other contexts.

And I know what some might say, that it's strange that I would admit this video can be seen as problematic and then turn around and maintain that it can also be an analogy for our relationship with God Himself. But first of all, like I said, you have to look at the intent behind the video and the emotions it is trying to convey. Much like the song itself uses lyrics that could be considered shallow and simplistic, but yet conveys love so well to me that it takes on a deeper meaning, the video may not in a superficial sense do all the right things, but somehow the actual intention and meaning is still conveyed well. And second of all, when it comes to parables, including the ones Jesus used, the earthly thing being used as an analogy need not be perfectly good and yet can still be used to demonstrate God in some way, through the power of how well-crafted analogies work.

tl;dr I love the video, and I think its true intention is good, but I can see how it can come across as problematic, and I wish the video had been done in such a way to make those interpretations less feasible. Ultimately, my opinions seem kind of like a mess because I can see both sides. I want to be firmly on the "it's not problematic" side, but I can't, because I do see how this video can be interpreted negatively; even though I don't believe that interpretation, for better or for worse, I can certainly see where it comes from. To be clear, this video can easily be interpreted in the intended, totally innocent way. I'm just saying that I can see where the "less innocent" interpretation comes from, and it's unfortunately not unreasonable.

Someday, maybe I will be able to straighten out my opinions more and they won't seem like a total self-contradiction, and can be expressed more concisely. But for now, this is what I have.
 

dam2040

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The world is far too soft if The Way You Make Me Feel is seen as a problematic video.
 

ShipOfFools

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No. Just...no.

It's not a video that glorifies rape culture. At least, I've never seen it that way.

Maybe it wouldn't be made today, but in the 1980's, there were a lot of videos that featured that kind of dynamic between a man and a woman. They just didn't have the audience that Michael Jackson had.
 

KOPV

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the newer title of the thread sits with me a lot better.. the 'rapist' vibe was too strong of a statement while I could see how some overly sensitive people could find it 'problematic'..
 

Loni1082

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Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

Well, I came across the video because I am also a fan of prince and this youtuber talks about Prince and on occasion he will talk about Michael as well. In this video he talks about how "The way you make me feel" gives off sexual harassment vibes in a nutshell. I don't agree. Obviously to me I feel as though she is playing hard to get in the video and this youtuber is reading to far in between the lines and over-analyzing the video. Anyways, I implore you NOT to leave any negative comments on this youtubers page bashing him because everyone of entitled to their own opinions no matter how right or wrong their opinions may be and we have to respect that. Lets discuss this. What do you think?

 

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

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analogue

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

These days just saying that a women looks pretty is deemed as ''Sexual harrasmen'' to some people.
 
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Nite Line

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

Clearly the girl in the video wanted Michael but she was playing hard to get. She wanted Michael to impress her, which he did obviously. It's not she was afraid of him and trying to get away from him. She wanted him and was clearly enjoying herself, watching MJ sing and dance to win her heart.

These days if a man looks at a woman, it's labelled sexual harassment. That's modern day feminism for you in a nutshell.
 

dam2040

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

The chase is playful and fun. People need to stop being such ****ing snowflakes.
 

Annita

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

There was allready a thread of it. Maybe mods can add it to this.

And the Video is just fun.
 

deluxillo

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

Feminism these days lol
 

Piek

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I think it is a legitimate discussion – and it's not about blaming Michael. This video is a product of its time and show a male fantasy that was ok in those days. It basically says: if you persist, she will give in and fall in love with you. It not about a girl who clearly wanted Michael all along – it's a male fantasy about a guy being impossible to resist. The video is created by a male director, a male choreographer, a male performer. And hey, nobody bothered in those days.

You could even argue that the guy in the video fails by impressing her by chasing her – it's only when he stops chasing her around and focuses on something he's really good at – dancing – she gets interested. That's when she appears and wants to hug him. And may be that's what the old man in the beginning means when he tells Michael to 'just be yourself'.

Far more interesting though, is that Michael changed the performance over time. Look at this perfomance during the History tour:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqypgDzLMls&frags=pl,wn
Clearly, the two already feel passionate about eachother, she is actually teasing him quite a bit, actually Michael seems disappointed by her at one point, and there are laughs during the whole thing. Michael was sensitive to the times, and made subtle changes.

We shouldn't be overly sensitive to these things – people feel insulted of victimised way too fast these days – but it's good to realise that times are changing. Michael did, obviously.
 

BadTour87

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

Pretty rich of Prince fans, who idolise an artist with many mentions of rape in songs, released or not, to try and make an MJ video seem evil and problematic.
 

SmoothCriminal1995

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

Stuff like this makes me despair at the current state of our world
I really like this guy and his reviews but he is reaching here to the point being beyond ridiculous
 
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myosotis

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

Sad seeing this video 'headline' all over Twitter and on FB in the week before MJ's 60th birthday.

IMHO, To the public, this looks really bad coming from an MJ fan site :(

Before I came here to see the thread, I thought it was probably something from Wade or his friends... as he usually turns up to spoil MJ's big days.
 

stephenvalek

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

I wrote a post about this,on another fan forum,some years ago.
At the time,and whilst the world outside the fan base,was laughing at Michael's soft voice and questioning his sexuality,came this film.
In reply to those pointing and wondering,came Michaels pursuit of a girl,overly sexually suggestive and a red blooded male,devoid of shyness.
It may be seen as somewhat "predatory"at times,but this is Michael Jackson,and this was his statement,that was more a shock at the transformation of character,than anything else.
Nobodies expecting him to do what he's doing..
"LOOK AT ME,IM NOT THE BOY BUT A MAN"

Nothing leaves a "bad taste",as there is no unease felt.
Even his own sister is in the group of girls,so why would it be taken so seriously?

People should stop trying to fit today's overly sensitive attitude into what was different at that time..
I wonder if they have a view on Lionel Ritchie's "Hello",where he appears to be stalking a disabled person!
No,I don't think they will,because only Michael Jackson will get the ill intended scrutiny
 
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BadTour87

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

It's irritating to see some people like "I never thought about it before, but re-watching it now I see how problematic this music video is".

They only think that because this idea has been put into their head.
 

Loni1082

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

Well, to add to my first post. I'm a heterosexual female and I do not see it the way this youtuber see's this video as a form a harassment. I know what it is to play hard to get... I've done it plenty of times in my younger days (I'm 35 now). So, I don't agree with what he is seeing in this video. Prince has many songs that are overly sexual. In Purple Rain he physically abused his love interest in the movie. However I'm a fan of both artists and I don't see their artistic work in a malicious way.
 

Starlight777

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Re: Michael Jackson and Sexual Harassment in The Way You Make Me Feel Video?

There's no sexual harassment on the video. In fact, the girl can be seen pulling Michael closer and pretending she is going to kiss him only to push him away. All Michael does is go after her but he doesn't touch her.

If people cant see the difference between flirting and playing hard to get and actual sexual harassment then there's something wrong with those people. Sorry.
 

StaceyMJ

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I've merged this over with the original thread that was in this section. Thanks all, continue...
 

ShipOfFools

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If you really, really want to view a problematic vibe, look at Marilyn Manson's newest music video. He's simulating rape using machine guns.

Michael's music video pales in comparison. If you look at all the music that has come out over the past 20 years, stuff like Slipknot and Nine Inch Nails, you can't argue that TWYMMF is a terrible music video.

And it really was a product of the times. All the movies of the times supported the theory that, if a guy persisted enough, he would get the girl, even if she didn't like him. There's even a scene in Revenge of the Nerds, which is much more problematic than Michael's video could ever be. Add in Steve Urkel in Family Matters, who badgered Laura for years before she went out with him...and she ended up marrying him.
 
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