can you hear me? are you near me?
can we pretend to leave and then
we'll meet again
when both our cars collide
Hi, rock star crush object, hiiiiii. This was a good look for you.
Yessssss, all the Dave Vanian gifs. Bring them to me.
Yet another Dave Vanian gif
Why yes, I almost always reblog gifs of Mr. Vanian looking particularly vampiric. This should not surprise you.
My Chemical Romance - Welcome to the Black Parade
I’m just a man / I’m not a hero
We are going to talk about theatricality a lot this week, but first I want to talk about sincerity. The two are not mutually exclusive, and My Chemical Romance is living proof of that.
My Chem’s entire body of work is steeped in narrative. Two of their biggest albums involved the entire band as characters, and yet Gerard said once that he never, ever felt like he was acting. You can see it in him. The way he moves, the way he emotes, the crazy voices, the outfits, the different personas he puts on and sheds like snakeskin - all of it is tied together by this blinding bright devotion to the meaning behind it all. These characters, this banter, it’s more than just a means to an end; it is both, somehow. Sometimes, to make someone feel what you feel, you exaggerate - you bend the truth - you say you were going a hundred miles an hour because that’s what it felt like, that was the truth of it, your truth, because even if you were really only going sixty, you have to make them understand. When My Chemical Romance gets up on that stage as The Black Parade, they are the Black Parade. They carry with them the weight of death. They were never grocery-cart boys, sullen and freezing in New Jersey. They were never sad about girls. They have always been here, under the falling ash, starved to death in a land of plenty. The Black Parade is literally death incarnate. And one October night in Mexico, My Chemical Romance killed them.
They played the album after that, of course. They didn’t just cut out the heart of their body of work to that date. But The Black Parade, through both the writing and the tour, was My Chemical Romance’s darkest timeline, if you will. They climbed down into the depths of their own secret, shriveled hearts and carved out an album, and they became other people to play it. To make it feel the way it needed to feel - the way it felt to them. The Black Parade died in Mexico City, and My Chemical Romance emerged on stage moments afterward, victorious. They played the album after that, but never all at once. Never the whole way through. My Chemical Romance was the Black Parade, but the Black Parade was something different - something more and less than My Chemical Romance, something transmuted and rarefied and necessary. It wasn’t acting; it was never acting. It was always only the truth.
My Chemical Romance - I’m Not Okay
You like D&D, Audrey Hepburn, Fangoria, Harry Houdini, and croquet. You can’t swim, you can’t dance, and you don’t know karate. Face it. You’re never gonna make it.
(We’re doing this first. I would say “getting it out of the way” but that is a disservice and also wrong, but it is sort of the knee-jerk My Chem word-association-game answer song, so we’re doing this first.)
It is important to name your demons. It is important to put a face on anything you intend to fight.
When My Chem broke up I was on vacation, in DC. I spent a lot of that weekend crying privately, and a lot of it drinking and crying publicly, and several of my friends thought it would be really funny and fun to scream-sing “I’m Not Okay” to me all weekend. This is the song, for a lot of people, that embodies what they don’t like about My Chemical Romance. You know these people. They sing it in a whine, or they pretend they don’t know the words. Don’t be fooled. They know the words, and they hate it, and they hate this song because it was (is) so goddamn important.
Everyone fucking loves it, is the thing. This is why everyone hates “I’m Not Okay.” Because the first time you heard it something inside your heart flipped over, squeezed tight, started beating harder and brighter and louder. Because it made you admit it. I’m not okay. I’m not okay, and it’s not bowed, it’s not beaten, it’s a scream. It’s defiant. I’m not o-fucking-kay and there is no apology. This is a thing I will come back to a lot over the week, but My Chemical Romance is really, really good at making you feel good about being sad, and not in a weird, damaging way that glamorizes it or entrenches it or anything like that. It’s cathartic. It is an exorcism. Name your demons. I’m not okay.
My Chemical Romance has always been about drama - there has always been this element of camp, of ~performance~ in a sense that goes beyond just physically performing, in everything they do. Remember, this is a band that literally built themselves on a foundation of saving the world, and I will talk more about that later, but “I’m Not Okay” was a battle cry. Their first single in the mainstream world, and look at this video. “I don’t wanna make it,” Gerard says. “I just wanna-” Guitar. When they were filming, they had planned for him to say “I just wanna rock,” but at the last minute they cut it out. They left it open, left it bare. I just wanna. I can’t tell you how important that is to me, I just wanna. A lot of being depressed, for me, was not wanting things - not wanting anything, regardless of what it was. “I’m Not Okay” gave me I’m not okay but it also gave me I just wanna, it let me leave that sentence unfinished. Sometimes you don’t need to want a thing. Sometimes you don’t know what you want. Sometimes it is enough to be alive, to want in its barest, broadest sense, and to recognize that you are fucked up right now and maybe it’s permanent and maybe it’s not but it is yours and you own it and you can scream it from the rooftops anytime you want. My Chemical Romance will love you for it.
And you have no idea what you’re up against
Because I’ve seen what they look like
Becoming perfect as if sterling silver chainsaws went cascading
And as always innocent like roller coaster fatality
Like ghosts in the snow…
This was a good look for him.
I recently repainted my Gerard to be more of the ‘Revenge’ era style. I think I’m much happier with him now :) Also enhanced his mods.
Gee’s a modded AiL Glen
Inspired by former MCR frontman Gerard Way
Faceup & mods by me (Lachlana)
OH MY GOODNESS, LOOK AT THIS DOLL! YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND, I NEED A VERSION OF THIS DOLL TO KEEP THE MINI-JILLI DOLL COMPANY. NEED.
(Listen, you can hear the RealHusband and the StuntHusband rolling their eyes.)
Dave Vanian - The Damned - At the Hammersmith Palais, 11.09.1983 (Photo by Mick Mercer)
Dear Mick Mercer, thank you for all the history of the goth scene that you’ve preserved.