Brow Beat

“Weird Al” Yankovic Won’t Perform Michael Jackson Parodies (for Now)

Curly-haired "Weird Al" Yankovic in close-up.
“Weird Al” Yankovic on Oct. 16, 2018, in Los Angeles.
Rich Polk/Getty Images

“Weird Al” Yankovic left two Michael Jackson parody songs off the set list for his current tour, Strings Attached, and now the humorist says that Leaving Neverland—the documentary in which two men accuse Jackson of molesting them as children—influenced the decision. Yankovic explained his reasoning to Billboard, though he did not rule out the possibility of performing “Eat It” (based on Jackson’s “Beat It”) and “Fat” (based on “Bad”) again in the future:

“I don’t know if that’s going to be permanent or not,” Yankovic tells Billboard, “but we just felt that with what’s happened recently with the HBO documentaries, we didn’t want anybody to feel uncomfortable. I felt I had enough fan favorites in the show that I could get away with it. I haven’t gotten a lot of pushback; There have been some people who have expressed disappointment, but we decided to err on the side of not offending people.”

“Trapped in the Drive-Thru,” Yankovic’s parody of R. Kelly’s “Trapped in the Closet,” also does not appear on the Strings Attached set list. In fact, Yankovic has apparently not performed the song on tour since 2011.