Janet Jackson comes from one of the most famous families in the world — The Jacksons — and has essentially been famous her whole life. However, she rose to fame when she kick-started her career as an actress. In 1977, she played the role of Penny in the American sitcom Good Times.
On Instagram, the “What Have You Done for Me Lately” hitmaker shared a throwback image taken from the set of the show. The vintage photo shows Jackson at a very young age. The festive photograph contained a character dressed up in a Santa Claus outfit for a Christmas-themed episode. On the wall also appeared to be a huge candy cane. Jackson wore an orange-and-yellow, long-sleeved dress paired with knee-high orange socks. The “Love Will Never Do (Without You)” songstress scraped her dark hair off her face and tied it up with a yellow hair tie.
In the photo, she looked directly at the character dressed up as Santa. A young Jackson flashed her pearly whites and was photographed from the side.
In her caption, she wished her 3.9 million followers a merry Christmas and hashtagged the post with “GoodTimes.”
In the span of 20 hours, Jackson’s post racked up more than 96,000 likes and 1,800 comments, proving to be a hit with her fans.
“Super nostalgic,” one user wrote, adding a love heart emoji.
“OMG,” another shared passionately in capital letters.
The “Doesn’t Really Matter” chart-topper has always been open about her insecurities and struggles over the years and hasn’t always had it easy in the world of acting.
According to I Love Old School Music, it all began during her time on Good Times.
“My struggle with managing my weight goes back to my childhood; to when I played Penny on Good Times. The first day, I was in wardrobe and they bound my breasts because I was developing early. That told me then that I was not good enough the way I was. The second season they told me that I needed to lose weight,” Jackson said.
“Then Mike would call me names, as brothers tend to do, like Dunk and Slaughter Hog… He didn’t mean to hurt me, but those things [the Good Times pressure and sibling teasing] stuck with me,” she continued.
Jackson appeared in 48 episodes when she played the role of Penny, per IMDb. She started in 1977 and continued until 1979.
Since the show, Jackson remained an actress and starred in other American TV series — A New Kind of Family, Diff’rent Strokes, The Love Boat, and Fame.
In 1986, The “Nasty” entertainer released her legendary album, Control, which propelled her into a music icon. In a British interview on The O-Zone, which can be watched on YouTube, Jackson admitted that she hated being on Fame and asked to be let out of her contract. This helped influence the content on the record.