[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Michaeljacksonthrilleralbum_6245.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:Best-selling album in the world. There's probably a copy of it nearby your house!]]

->''"No mere mortal can resist... the e-vil of the Thrillerrrr!"''
-->-- '''Creator/VincentPrice'''

'''''Thriller''''' (1982) by Music/MichaelJackson is the best-selling music album in history. It sold over 65 domestically and 110 million copies world wide. Seven of the nine tracks on the album were released as singles, with each one reaching the Top 10 on the ''Billboard'' Hot 100. Three of the singles, "Billie Jean", "Beat It" and "Thriller" were accompanied by music videos that elevated the record to its iconic status. Although Jackson was already world famous since the 1970s and music videos already existed as a promotional tool both he and the medium became a dominating force in the music industry. "The King of Pop" broke down racial barriers via his MTV appearances, won eight Grammys and even met President RonaldReagan at the White House.

Since 2009 the album has been included in the Library of Congress' NationalRecordingRegistry of culturally significant recordings. The iconic music video in which Jackson dances with zombies was included in the National Film Preservation Board's National Film Registry of "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant films".

Also for a nice bit of [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming Heartwarming]], not long after Jackson's death was announced in that same year, many fans around the world honored him by performing the dance number.

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!!! "No mere mortal can resist the evil of a trope":

* AllJustADream: The music video was a nightmare of his girlfriend...[[OrWasItADream or was it?]]
* ChangedForTheVideo: The video version has all the choruses moved to the end of the song instead of between verses, with Creator/VincentPrice's [[AWildRapperAppears rap]] coming before the choruses. The bridge is also omitted.
* CreepyCemetery
* TheDeadCanDance: There are slow zombies, fast zombies, and then there are ''[[OurZombiesAreDifferent funk zombies]]''.
* EverythingsDeaderWithZombies
* EvilLaugh: Vincent Price does a great one at the end.
* FaceRevealingTurn: One of the most famous instances of this trope.
* GirlsAreReallyScaredOfHorrorMovies
* GlowingEyesOfDoom: Michael's eyes in the infamous twist ending.
* InJoke: A movie character says, "See you next Wednesday." That's the title of a fictitious film that crops up in several movies by the video's director, Creator/JohnLandis.
* MichaelJacksonsThrillerParody: Trope Namer.
* MST3KMantra: Invoked when Michael and the girl walk out of the movie theater:
-->'''MICHAEL''': "It's only a movie!"
* NestedStoryReveal: [[spoiler: [[TheEndOrIsIt Or is it?]]]]
* NoNameGiven: Ola Ray's character is credited only as "Michael's girl."
* OurWerewolvesAreDifferent: Michael looks more like a cat than a wolf.
* PassThePopcorn: Turns out the opening sequence is a movie, and Michael Jackson is enjoying some while watching.
* ShapeshiftingLover: You'd think a guy suffering from chronic lycanthropy would cancel any dates that coincide with a full moon...
* ShowWithinAShow: Michael and his girl watch a horror movie.
* TalkyBookends: Popularized the concept.
* TheresNoBInMovie: The film that Michael and the girl are watching, and the lyrics mention "the thing with 40 eyes."
* ZombieApocalypse
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!!! "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Tropes)":

* AndStarring: Creator/VincentPrice on "Thriller" and [[Music/PaulMcCartney Paul [=McCartney=]]] on "The Girl Is Mine".
* BadassPacifist: Michael in "Beat It" who sings and dances gang members into avoiding a fight.
* ContinuityNod:
** The line "''Billie Jean is always talking''" in "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'".
** Jackson and Music/PaulMcCartney share a duet during ''The Girl Is Mine''. Both singers sang earlier together on the single ''Say Say Say'' on Macca's album ''Tug Of War'' (1982).
* DarkerAndEdgier: Compared to Jackson's previous joyful dance output the three Top 10 hit singles of the album were all paranoid songs about escaping from stuff in the dark ("Thriller"), street gangs ("Beat It!") and a woman claiming that he fathered her child ("Billie Jean").
* DuelsDecideEverything: Subverted in "Beat It!"
* EducationalSong: "Beat It!"
* ElectronicSpeechImpediment: Squeaky voices near the end of "P.Y.T (Pretty Young Thing)".
* EpicRocking: "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" and "Billie Jean" sure are epic in scale.
* GenreRoulette: Pop, soul and R&B. ''"Beat It!"'' has an electric guitar solo by [[Music/VanHalen Eddie Van Halen]], which pulled in countless rock fans.
* GrowOldWithMe: "''And even when we're old and grey/ you'll always be the lady in my life''" - "The Lady in My Life".
* HairTriggerTemper: ''"The fire's in their eyes/ and their words are really clear"'' in ''"Beat It"''.
* LetsDuet: ''"The Girl Is Mine"''
* LyricalDissonance: ''"Billie Jean"'', a super catchy dance number about a girl claiming that Jackson is the father of her child.
* LyricalTic: ''"A-hi-hi-hiiii"''
* MinimalisticCoverArt: Just a picture of Jackson sitting up on the floor.
* MommasBoy: In "Billie Jean":
-->''And mother always told me\\
be careful who you love\\
and be careful what you do\\
'cause the lie becomes the truth.''
* ObsessionSong: "Billie Jean"
* PepTalkSong: From "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'":
-->''So keep your head up high and scream out to the world\\
I know I am someone\\
And let the truth unfurl\\
No-one can hurt me now\\
Because you know what's true\\
Yes, I believe in me\\
So you believe in you''
* ThePowerOfLove: ''Baby Me Mine'', ''The Girl Is Mine'', ''Human Nature'', ''P.Y.T.'', ''The Lady In My Life''.
* ProperlyParanoid: "Thriller", "Billie Jean" and "Beat It".
* QuarrelingSong: ''The Girl Is Mine''.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: Jackson was indeed stalked by a woman claiming that Jackson was [[ArtisticLicenseBiology the father of one of her twins]]. This was the inspiration for "Billie Jean".
* RecordProducer: Music/QuincyJones.
* SanitySlippageSong: "Billie Jean"
* SelfBackingVocalist
* ShoutOut:
** Music/WeirdAlYankovic spoofed ''Beat It'' and his music video as ''Eat It''.
** Music/{{Eminem}} referenced the music video for ''Billie Jean'' by imitating Jackson dancing on the light reflecting steps in his music video for ''Just Lose It''.
* SpecialGuest: Music/PaulMcCartney in ''The Girl is Mine'' and [[Music/VanHalen Eddie Van Halen]] during "Beat It".
* SpiritualSuccessor: "Thriller" would receive one in "Threatened", also featuring Vincent Price.
** ''Music/{{Bad}}'' seems to be almost the opposite message of "Beat It".
** "Ghosts" feels like an effort to surpass "Thriller".
* SpokenWordInMusic: Vincent Price in the song "Thriller".
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