Radio 66, side B, track 5: “Black Cat” by Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson - Black CatOh, Janet Jackson, oh my god, I looooooove this song!  The only reason this only got recorded once off the radio is because I bought the cassingle of this and listened to it millions of times.  The main reason I was so enthralled with this song, other than the fact that it absolutely rocks and kicks ass all at the same time, is that this song burst on to the radio right while I was in the middle of a big old comic book creative streak.

You see, Janet Jackson, one of my dreams as a kid (and let’s face it, as an adult) was to make my living as a comic book writer.  I wrote stories all through elementary and high school, starting with “The Bubbles’ Big Adventures” (a surprisingly dark tale about magical soap bubbles who come to life), and after I discovered Marvel comics, shifting my focus to making superhero stories.  They were (and let’s face it, still are) fairly derivative.  But I loved writing ’em.  And one of my superheroes was named Alleycat.  He was like a cross between Batman and Wolverine and Manimal (“Manimal” was one of my favorite TV shows of all time as a kid).  His super power was that he could change into any animal that he wanted to, but his favorite was a black panther (strangely enough, that was also MY favorite animal!).

Obviously, Alleycat and my other superhero creations were going to become as popular as my beloved Spider-Man, so obviously, there were going to be movie adaptations of them.  Movie adaptations that were going to be even better than the Batman and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle movies!  And when this song showed up, I knew what the theme song of the Alleycat movie was going to be.  You have no idea how excited I was to think about going to the Alleycat movie and hearing this song playing over the opening credits.

It may come as a surprise to you, Janet Jackson, but my dreams of becoming a comic book superstar never came to fruition.  Although I do still get to make comics with my friends, and that’s not bad at all.  And even though Alleycat didn’t become the iconic character I assumed he’d become, thank you for helping me believe that he could.

lyrics to “Black Cat”

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