For a long, long time, Sonic the Hedgehog fans have had their own conspiracy theory on par with any JFK assassination plot: Many believe that Michael Jackson secretly recorded some of the music for Sonic 3.
This isn't as crazy as it sounds—in 2005, one of the Sonic 3 composers, Brad Buxer, told a French magazine that Jackson had initially helped write some tracks, but that he wasn't sure if any of them had been used. Sega has always said that it did not work with Jackson, so it seemed like this would always be an unconfirmed rumor.
That all changed thanks to a massive Huffington Post feature published Monday that documented the history of the theory—and provided some proof:
"Six men—Brad Buxer, Bobby Brooks, Doug Grigsby III, Darryl Ross, Geoff Grace and Cirocco Jones—are listed as songwriters in Sonic 3's endgame scroll. Buxer, Grigsby and Jones tell The Huffington Post that Jackson worked with them on a soundtrack for Sonic 3—and that the music they created with Jackson ended up in the final product."
According to that story, Jackson, a huge Sega fan, visited the company's top-secret facility in Palo Alto, California, where the game was being developed. According to the executive coordinator of the team creating Sonic 3, that's when they asked Jackson if he would write music for the game.
It's unclear why Jackson's name was scrubbed from the game—some sources quoted in the story say that Sega didn't want to be involved with the pop star after he was accused of molesting children; others say that Jackson was unhappy with the sound quality and didn't want to be associated with the game.
For Sonic fans, this is big, big news, and relatively conclusive. Now they can move onto something new, like fighting about the color of Sonic the Hedgehog's arms.