Fact Check

Michael's Jackson's Nose

Did Michael Jackson's prosthetic nose fell off during a recent TV special ?

Published Dec 1, 2001

Claim:   Michael Jackson prosthetic nose fell off during a recent TV special.

Status:   Multiple — see below.

Example:   [Collected on the Internet, 2001]

The rumor is that Michael Jackson's prosthetic nose fell off during his 30th anniversary tv show and because he had editing rights, he had it edited out.

Variations:   Depending on whom you hear the rumor from, the replacement nose is held in place with clips, stitches, or magnets.

Origins:   How does Michael Jackson pick his nose? From a catalogue, say the wags.

The singer's numerous plastic surgeries coupled with the marked physical transformation he had undergone over the years gave rise to this particular rumor. Of all the surgeries endured, none have resulted in more striking a change

than the work done on his nose. It is said Michael Jackson underwent rhinoplasty six times, on each occasion reducing and reshaping that facial feature drastically. Those who look upon plastic surgery with disapproval find vindication for their stance in the whisper that Jacko's nose finally gave up the ghost and fell off. This is, after all, a tale of retribution for having tampered with Nature once too often.

Some describe Jackson's final proboscis in less than flattering terms. "His nose is the size of one of those baby corns you find in salads," said one reporter for The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in 2001. Others echoed that pronouncement, likening it to something run through a pencil sharpener. Though beauty lies in the eye of the beholder, thus opinion will vary widely on whether his nose was handsome or particularly suited him, none can deny that particular specimen looked far more fragile than the norm. This perception of fragility bolstered the plausibility of the notion that it wouldn't have taken much to make it fall off.

Although 2001 expressions of the gossip present the purported event as something recent (often tying it to the "Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Celebration" which aired on CBS on November 13, 2001), this same story was circulating years earlier.

[Collected via e-mail, 1996]

Anyone heard anything about Michael Jackson's nose? It's been worked on so much it has lost its structural integrity, and now he has to wear a prosthetic nose because all he has left is a little knob. Some newspaper in Taiwan reported that it fell off during one of his concerts there on his current tour... and some radio DJ here said it also fell off when he was shooting a video and some water hit his nose directly.

That bit of scuttlebutt was possibly an expansion of an earlier, milder rumor:

[Wellington Evening Post, 1995]

More buzz about Michael Jackson. Or rather, what's going on with the star's face these days. Insiders report the singer's nose is "in trouble" and needs to be repaired as soon as possible. It seems Jackson's newest implant at the tip of his nose has become unstable and is causing the star serious breathing problems.

On 25 June 2009, Michael Jackson died of cardiac arrest at a hospital in Los Angeles. Afterwards, rumors again circulated that he had a prosthetic nose which had gone missing after his death, revealing "a small, dark hole surrounded by bits of cartilage."

When it came to trying to figure out what to make of Michael Jackson's various facial surgeries, rumor often substituted for

Michael Jackson

hard fact because there was no credible information to be had. The singer's secrecy about his beautifications and his odd behavior overall compounded the situation, making wild assertions appear more attractive than ever. For example, he showed up for a November 2001 interview with TV Guide with his nose swathed in gray bandages. "It is analgesic tape," he said. "For allergies."

There were whispers that he somehow injured his nose in early September 2001 while rehearsing, necessitating his seeking medical attention for it. Once again, this is difficult to confirm, but if an actual injury had occurred, it would begin to explain the resurgence of the "Jacko's nose fell off" rumor in the fall of 2001.

Barbara "nose news is good news" Mikkelson

Last updated:   24 July 2009

  Sources Sources:

    Liddy, Tom.   "Jacko's Fake Nose 'Missing.'"

    New York Post.   24 July 2009.

    Murphy, Mary and Jennifer Graham.   "The Man in the Mirror."

    TV Guide.   29 November 2001.

    Trieschmann, Werner.   "Some Things Are Beyond the Kemosabe's Grasp."

    The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.   14 September 2001   (p. W2).

    The [Wellington] Evening Post.   "That's Hollywood."

    24 July 1995   (Entertainment, p. 14).

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