It looked like Michael. It moonwalked like Michael. But it definitely wasn't Michael!
Sunday night "The Gloved One" was resurrected to perform his posthumous hit "Slave to the Rhythm" at the Billboard Music Awards. A hologram version of Michael Jackson danced and lip-synced as live dancers moved around him. The King of Pop received a standing ovation.
Jackson isn't the only hologram in the arena right now. On Lady Gaga's current ArtRave: The Artpop Ball tour, Hatsune Miku opens the show. Hatsune is a hologram of a green-haired, anime-styled teenager who can change her outfits with the wave of her arm and a shower of glitter. The virtual idol plays "live" with a band and backup dancers to sold out crowds in Japan.
But beyond pop stars and rockers, fashion houses have come to embrace the burgeoning hologram trend. Earlier this year, Guess debuted an undeniably impressive fashion show in Barcelona with hologram models stomping down a projected catwalk wearing the brand's signature denim.
In 2011, Burberry debuted a fashion show in Beijing with a runway show filled with 3D and live models. As the trenchcoat-ed glamazons walked into their hologram rivals, the holograms would dissolve into puddles.