The best way to remember Michael Jackson is to exploit his death.

Death is a time for sadness. Unless you're one of Michael Jackson's far less talented and beloved brothers, in which case it's time to milk the moment for all it's worth. The Jackson 5's 40th anniversary reunion tour, which was to be an A&E docu-series, obviously won't be happening now that the superstar brother is dead, so the Jackson family is instead moving forward with an A&E show that will show the world just how fucked up it is (over the loss of MJ).

Not that such use and abuse of the dearly departed is anything new. Whenever there is celebrity and tragedy, somebody will be there to gain money and exposure from it. Check out some of the most memorable exploitations of dead celebrities by the people who supposedly loved them.


Exploiter: Sean "Puff Daddy P Diddy" Combs
Exploitee: Christopher "The Notorious B.I.G." Wallace

The Exploitation: It turned out there was life after death, only it was Puff squeezing every ounce of celebrity he could out of Biggie's memory with tribute songs until he'd successfully transformed himself from dancing hype man into the main attraction. Sadly, Diddy's celebrity still isn't ready to die.



Exploiter: Courtney Love
Exploitee: Kurt Cobain
The Exploitation: It's hard to pinpoint the widow's peak of cashing in on her husband, who committed suicide in 1994, but we're gonna go out on a limb and say that the Nirvana singer, who despised the corporate selling-out of rock, wouldn't have been too pleased to see her license his lyrics, sketches, and signature for limited edition Converse sneakers. In fact, we think he probably would have up-Chuck Taylored.



Exploiter: Yoko Ono
Exploitee: John Lennon
The Exploitation: The performance artist widow has made hundreds of millions of dollars off Lennon, who was slain in 1980, with questionable art-meets-commerce moves (and we don't mean licensing his songs to Nike and JCPenney for commercials or even slapping his signature on Ben & Jerry's Imagine Whirled Peace ice cream). No, Ono's on some real blood money shit: She put a picture of his blood-stained glasses on the cover of her 1981 album Season of Glass; she also reportedly sold replicas of the bloodstained glasses and shirt he was wearing when he was shot; in 2009, she exhibited the blood-stained paper bag his belongings were returned to her in, as well as a photo of the bloody glasses, at New York's Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame, where people could pay to see "Lennon: The NYC Years." Bloody exploitative if you ask us.



Exploiter: Lil Eazy-E
Exploitee: Eazy-E
The Exploitation: Despite endlessly name-dropping his famous father, who died of AIDS in 1995, Lil Eazy hasn't been able to follow in his footsteps (or even put out his debut album, The Prince of Compton). Not that we could blame him for throwing the family name around when Game was repping Compton with Eazy-E tatted on his forearm and a butterfly on his face.



Exploiter: Afeni Shakur
Exploitee: Tupac "2pac" Shakur
The Exploitation: Nobody loves a man like his mother, especially when he's a prolific icon who left behind an extensive catalogue of unreleased money-makin' material. Since Pac's murder in 1996, his mom has sold millions of records and launched the Makaveli Branded clothing line. On the bright side, she put posthumous proceeds into the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation charity. On the other hand, she's to blame for rumors that Pac is alive and thuggin' somewhere south of the border.



Exploiter: INXS
Exploitee: Michael Hutchence
The Exploitation: After Hutchence's accidental 1997 death by autoerotic asphyxiation, the band dicked around, resurfacing with Rock Star: INXS, a 2004-'05 reality TV show in which 15 contestants douche bags competed to replace him. We're sure dying by his own hand (get it? he was masturbating) was considerably less embarrassing for Hutch.



Exploiter: T L C
Exploitee: Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes
The Exploitation: Like the boys of INXS, surviving TLC group members Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins and Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas coped with the loss of their friend in a 2002 car accident by hosting R U the Girl, a 2005 reality television show in which singers competed to record and perform a single with them. The winner did not get to replace Left Eye or wear her favorite condom eye patch, however, because you gotta show some respect for the dead.