In case you missed it, Spike TV is no more, as the channel has now been re-christened Paramount Network, effective last night. The network ushered in this new era with a special episode of Lip Sync Battle, which featured a live, hour-long tribute to Michael Jackson (who would have turned 60 years old later this year) from some high-profile performers.
The special featured Taraji P. Henson dancing along to “Beat It,” complete with red and black leather attire and a bevy of background dancers. Elsewhere in the episode, Neil Patrick Harris donned all white for a performance of “Smooth Criminal,” Hailee Steinfeld got wet for “The Way You Make Me Feel,” and Laverne Cox used some rising platforms for her “Dirty Diana” display.
In a pre-show interview, Henson relished the opportunity to perform live:
“I chose this song because I feel like it’s one of his most popular songs. It’s just a good chance for me to be on a platform to pretend I’m Michael Jackson. Instead of in the shower or in my mirror, I get to do it in front of actual humans. […] I want to show the world that I know how to moon walk.”
Watch the clips from the Michael Jackson tribute above.