The Nobodies – Marilyn Manson

“The Nobodies” is a song by American rock band Marilyn Manson. It is the third and final single from their fourth studio album, Holy Wood (In the Shadow of the...

The Nobodies” is a song by American rock band Marilyn Manson. It is the third and final single from their fourth studio album, Holy Wood (In the Shadow of the Valley of Death), released in 2001.

Like several of the songs in the album, this was inspired by the Columbine shootings, for which mass media attempted to blame Manson’s influence despite all evidence to the contrary: after the shootings the media widely reported that listening to Manson’s music drove the boys, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, to kill, though in fact they didn’t appear to be fans of the band. An interview with him about the Columbine shootings was featured in the 2002 Michael Moore documentary Bowling for Columbine. When Moore asked what he would say to the students at Columbine, Manson replied, “I wouldn’t say a single word. I would listen to what they have to say and that’s what no one did.

Even if the song was inspired by that tragic event and addressed to the two shooters (We are the nobodies/Wanna be somebodies/When we’re dead/They’ll know just who we are) the meaning covers a wider topic, which is encompassed in this verse:

Some children died the other day
We fed machines and then we prayed
Puked up and down in morbid faith
You should have seen the ratings that day

Like a lot of his lyrics, this song deals with Manson’s perception that the media tend to martyr and deify those who die within the public eye, for their own interests. When the “nobodies” die by the hand of other “nobodies“, the media circus starts: they don’t actually care about the victims, (“some children died the other day“, Manson says in the song) they just want the gory details. And it seems to work because ratings are always high in these occasions.

Today I’m dirty
And I want to be pretty
Tomorrow, I know I’m just dirt
Today I’m dirty
And I want to be pretty
Tomorrow, I know I’m just dirt

We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are
We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are

Yesterday I was dirty
Wanted to be pretty
I know now that I’m forever dirt
Yesterday I was dirty
Wanted to be pretty
I know now that I’m forever dirt

We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are
We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are

Some children died the other day
We fed machines and then we prayed
Puked up and down in morbid faith
You should have seen the ratings that day
Some children died the other day
We fed machines and then we prayed
Puked up and down in morbid faith
You should have seen the ratings that day

We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are
We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are
We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are
We are the nobodies
Wanna be somebodies
When we’re dead
They’ll know just who we are

 

 

 

 

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Sounds from the Bucket
Marco Principia

Born in Rome, his beloved city. Graduated with honors in Political Science and International Relations at Università degli Studi “Roma Tre”. Expert of current affairs and United Nations. Recently attended a course in Humanitarian Emergency at INTERSOS. Currently employed at CIES – ONLUS in the Coordination and Organization Office for Interpreting and Translation Service for Territorial Commissions for the Recognition of International Protection.
Huge fan of A.S. Roma.

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