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ANNALS OF CELEBRITY

A facial that just won't stop

November 30, 2003

As a fresh Michael Jackson spectacle unfolds, bringing with it the latest glimpse of his ever-evolving features, it's reignited a fascination with the "king of pop's" many faces.

One chronicle of the evolution is housed at anomalies-unlimited.com (anomalies-unlimited.com/Jackson.html), a Web site devoted to scientific and cultural oddities ranging from "alien writing" ("The problem with translating 'alien' writing is that we can only decode it using our Earthly intelligence") to "strange patterns from ice" and foot binding.

It's an admittedly caveat emptor environment, yet the photos that track Jackson's face seem amid it all to play as straightforward documentation. Things take a sadly fanciful turn when the images are placed next to those of other cultural icons, from Bette Davis to Ari from "Planet of the Apes." There's an unmistakable resemblance between, say, the chipped-to-a-point 1993 Jackson nose and that of Hanna-Barbera's Judy Jetson. The set of "separated-at-birth" comparisons continues, taking the singer through "the Batman period," "the Japanese Anime cartoon period" and the "Black Lagoon phase," during which the writer asks, "What's happened to our Michael?"

The site bills the page as "a photographic history of Michael Jackson's face with blithering, yet witty commentary" -- but no commentary's really necessary. The faces, like those on this page, say it all.

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