Jackson, having taken his longest break yet from making music, came back with an album that stuck with the musical template of Thriller but with a more, hip-hop, heavy rock attitude.
"I'm Bad", he snarled, somewhere between LL Cool J and Axl Rose on a song that was originally meant to be a duet with Prince.
The 26-year-old - who headlined Glastonbury Festival in July - is the year's most streamed artist on Spotify with a reported 47m monthly listeners.
The singer expressed his gratitude to fans with a message he posted on social media, saying: “Thank you very much for making Perfect Christmas number one.
This is an actual dream come true and I'm very proud and happy.
Monster hit, Ben, on paper is pure schmaltz but Jackson's wrenching yet delicate delivery transforms it into a genuinely moving moment of Broadway pop.
He also tackles, if somewhat timidly, the Marvin Gaye conscious-soul school with People Make the World Go Round, while keeping his bosses placated with some increasingly tired sounding Motown-by-numbers. Key sound: Movie Showtunes Clutching an acoustic guitar in his tank top and looking glumly introspective, Jackson was clearly seeking a deeper sound than Motown could provide but on this, his most unsuccessful record, not finding it.