Photo Credit: Stefania D'Alessandro/Getty Images
Last night on In the Spotlight with Robin Roberts, Janet Jackson appeared in her first interview since her brother Michael Jackson's death. She and Roberts chat inside Janet's opulent, Malibu home, and gaze out over its balcony at the magnificent ocean view. (The roiling Pacific, she says, hushes her to sleep at night, like a personal lullaby.) Between the honeymoon-suite-like surroundings and her perfectly (and surgically) sculpted face, a viewer can't help but feel a bit disconnected from Janet.
It doesn't help that Roberts begins with some ridiculous questions. (Exhibit A: "How is your heart?") But Janet is poised. She reveals that the Jackson family was aware of Michael's addiction to prescription drugs, and had arranged a number of interventions to help him. Asked how Michael responded, Janet sighs. "He understood that it was out of love," she says. "I thought he was in denial."
What she didn't know was the extent of the drug use -- or the type. Michael's personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray was administering Propofol (brand name, Diprivan), a hospital-strength anesthetic, to help Michael sleep. "That's serious," she says. "That's heavy... That was a shocker to me."
When the subject turns to Murray, Janet flashes with anger. "Do you think he should be practicing?" asks Roberts. (Another brilliant question.) "Not at all," Jackson said. "So this could happen to someone else? Another family?"
Unfortunately, that's where Janet's revelations end. Roberts inquired about Michael's children -- Prince Michael I, 12, Paris Michael Katherine, 11 and Prince Michael II, 7, (aka Blanket), who are being raised by Janet and Michael's mother, Katherine Jackson, at the family's Encino, CA compound. "They don't really like to be photographed still," says Janet. "But they're able to deal with it." According to one recent media report, the children have begun to call Janet "Mama," but it isn't addressed in this interview.
The rest of the hour is old news: Janet's weight fluctuations, her previous marriages and recent break-up with Jermaine Dupri, and a growing up as a Jackson. Will she appear in a much-discussed Jackson reality TV show? No mention of it. We'll have to wait for the next time she steps 'in the spotlight.'