If you have an original copy of PopCap’s Plants vs. Zombies, tuck it away safely with the rest of your Michael Jackson memorabilia because the game’s iconic red leather-wearing, white glove-sporting zombie has been removed following a complaint from the late singer’s estate.
“The Estate of Michael Jackson objected to our use of the ‘dancing zombie’ in PLANTS vs. ZOMBIES based on its view that the zombie too closely resembled Michael Jackson,” a PopCap Games representative informed MTV Multiplayer. “After receiving this objection, PopCap made a business decision to retire the original ‘dancing zombie’ and replace it with a different ‘dancing zombie’ character for future builds of PLANTS vs. ZOMBIES on all platforms. The phase-out and replacement process is underway.”
The Thriller-inspired Dancing Zombie appeared only during night levels, where he would use his slick dance moves to summon a horde of sinisterly synchronized Back-up Dancer Zombies. Though Plants vs. Zombies‘ homage to Jackson’s 14-minute masterpiece didn’t raise any objections while the singer was still alive, released as it was a couple of months before his death, PopCap has decided to preempt a lawsuit. The latest update to the game replaces the controversial character with a disco themed zombie. And up in heaven, Michael sheds a single tear.