Michael Jackson patented a gadget to perform dance magic

As we mourn the loss of spectacular dancer, frenetic and staccato singer, and professional weirdo Michael Jackson, the gadget world reminisces about a patent Jackson filed in 1993. Remember that supernatural, gravity-defying 45-degree lean Jackson performed with his troupe of dancers on "Smooth Criminal"? Jackson used wires and harnesses in the 1988 music video, but that wasn't possible when he performed the trick live in 1992.

He did it with special shoes that quickly slid into pegs that rise out of the floor at just the right moment. Also helping the effect were rigid anklets that worked like ski boots, supporting Jackson and his entourage of dancers as they leaned forward at that magic angle. Notice the guy on the right having a bit of trouble extricating himself from the paraphernalia in this live concert video:

Via BB Gadgets