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Sans Agendum
01-22-2013, 08:21 PM
Manson in the his early career fancied himself the reflection of the society that raised him. That he would not be who he was without the village that brought him up. So he claimed in defiance to criticism that "I am You. I am your shit! You should be ashamed of what you have eaten!"

He offered biting social critiques in his music and his interviews involved as many memorable quotes as there were interviews.

I am You. And yet this was a philosophy he took on as an experiment more than something he really had experienced. He was a young man in his late 20's, obsessively reading over Aleister Crowley, Anton Lavey and Neitsche, more in heartfelt rebellion than in life experience. He had a lot to draw on and emulate to play the part of an Antichrist. The road out from this would be trying. Not only that, it would seem the 'Long Hard Road Out of Hell' would not be a successful one.

Manson has been living a famous life for a long time. He is no longer a starving artist. He has been well cared for and cushioned for a long time. He is now the celebrity being that he always feared and rejected as any sort of logical existence, even though he actively sought it out, it has changed him.

He no longer has the image of a reflection of society. He now wears the apathetic recklessness of the elite. Pampered, well fed and uncaring towards the direction of anyone's lives. He has become the uncaring and oblivious form of uncaring abandon that he merely played the part of during his youth.

He can no longer speak for normal people if he wanted to. So he's inhuman now like he always feared he would become. He's become his own shadow character in Marilyn Manson. He doesn't care anymore and just wants to live a hedonistic lifestyle.

If you look over the story in the triptych, it is eery in how it tells the story of a man who left a life of an outcast to infiltrate the society of the elite, only to in the end become everything he once hated while living on the other side, and then looking at Manson's recent history. He rose to fame, tried to fit in (even tried to marry) and has been accepted into so many levels of Hollywood, yet the message in his music and the voice in his interviews has changed dramatically. Like a self fulfilling prophecy in a way.

So do you think maybe Manson in his youth set down a path to become something that he hadn't yet become and that all of this has been plotted towards an end that simply sees him taking advantage of a past he no longer even relates to?

The Empirical Guy
01-23-2013, 01:12 AM
Yes, I've been saying this for years.

thatrussianman
01-23-2013, 03:27 AM
Hey Empirical Guy, I just found out we share(ed) a mutual interest.

Hint: For the Emperor

Cringeon
01-23-2013, 07:07 AM
I think MM followed the story mapped out in the Triptych up through MA/HW. That was the height of popularity with MTV, arena tours, action figures, etc. From that point on, to me it seemed from GAOG almost making fun of everything about the character of MM and pop culture through THEOL where he was burning the commercial status down - he now seems to be at a place that reminds me more of where he was when he started the band. Of course with time, his ideas that he wants to share change - you can only share your view points of the world with it falling on deaf ears before you decide to talk about something else. People forget, Portrait and ACSS contain lyrics not written by some rock star out to change the world, these were still lyrics (poems) written by a pretty quiet guy who just wanted to create art, being inspired by what music, books and film he took in. That's where he seems to be now, MM has definitely decided not to go for a live large status but instead finding comfort in the basic essentials that allow him to create the kind of art he feels in the moment and share it with those who care to hear/see - and take care of his family. Having gone through the real life story of MM, he seems to be at a place now where the bloated rockstar the label propped up was sacrificed knowing it would always be this hollow shell of what he always wanted to do. His art now is still a reflection of society, not in the direct commentary way but as the personal story of a man who's only passion is to be an artist and how that was propelled into something larger that did allow him to share a larger artistic message but could only be sustained for so long in a world that does not care about art.

Maybe it's because he is older, and I am older - but I feel I relate much more to the type of artist he is now and the kind of things he expresses than when I was a kid taking in the concepts of ACSS-MA which no matter how I spin it where things a kid in middle school doesn't truly grasp until going through life.

blue angel
01-23-2013, 10:24 AM
I agree and now as he is "there", he doesn't even have to try hard at anything, as he used to do before in his work. He looks around, and as he sees that everyone is "working" and putting out their creative stuff in music and film, it's all just so empty and fun, he can now "just get by" like the rest and live the good life in charm.
But, who can blame him. It's all so obsolete and the whole biz is a bore.

shrubberyhorizon
01-23-2013, 12:50 PM
The problem you seem to have is a folly. You don't need to live your life to the standards you set when you were younger, your beliefs will change. He has served as a mirror, he has given to the world at a lot of expense. He continues now as something different. He has no obligation to continually serve this dull world. What is wrong with concentrating on your own happiness? He creates what he wants to create and he continues to add to people's lives. Where is your problem?

shrubberyhorizon
01-23-2013, 12:55 PM
In interviews and music I see a happy man who has embodied his art and has now seen the irrationality of the world. This is wonderful. This is very inspiring to many who see it. Manson has shown and been many things; an exceptional quality. If you don't like what he gives now, then you can still enjoy the past incarnations.

S.D.
01-23-2013, 01:01 PM
All we really know about Marilyn Manson, or 'Brian Warner' before that character was created, is what we've been told by the man himself. Outside of a few corroborative statements from people - positive and negative - whatever image he has it's largely self-perpetuated. I don't think any artist has it as bad as they make out when starting their career, and by the same token, only creepy, sycophantic types in Hollywood make out that they've got it really good. Manson's never been a 'starving artist' in his life, and he knows that, so it's not like some past version of himself would disapprove of how he lives now, he's always been this way.
With that in mind, I think sometimes people take his characterisations too seriously. Certainly Antichrist Superstar was designed to have an effect, and he embodied that totalitarian figure perfectly. However, as was slightly more obvious on Mechanical Animals, it was just a character. Antichrist...'s purpose was to show America (and its religious population) what a fractured, consumerist life they were leading, and by his own admission "annoy" them with it. Alternately, it did what Portrait Of An American Family couldn't, which was to vocalise Manson's own feelings, and concerns about himself.
Self-fulfilling prophecies, numerology, black magic, iconography and biblical figures were a way to realise that vision, but I don't think it was Manson making a genuine prediction about his own future. The whole thing with the album was "We have predicted the past", it's an ironic stance that says whatever the artist does, they will naturally become things they've criticised, so instead of looking at them, look at yourself.

In my favourite interview he's ever conducted, Manson discussed Wild In The Streets, and said "One day I will be destroyed by my own standards".
That's hyperbolic, sure, but I think Manson was shrewd enough to have meant it from the position of provocateur. There's always someone who'll be offended by something, but Manson knows that things he said and did initially in his career don't reflect the world as we know it today. In order to not step on his own toes, now he speaks about the things he wants to in his art, whether that's lyrically, or in a painting, or how he represents himself visually.
'The Antichrist' needed to look like just that, an Antichrist. It wasn't supposed to be imposing to anyone other than people stupid enough to believe it was true. To everyone else, Marilyn Manson was simply an articulate, funny, well-read rock star who made cracking records. Little has changed, he just doesn't need to antagonise anyone now.

His life, at present, doesn't really mirror any specific part of his past canon, besides the fact that he continues to be Marilyn Manson. That's what I thought No Reflection was supposed to be about.

shrubberyhorizon
01-23-2013, 01:17 PM
How you take it depends on how interesting you want to make life. Sure, you can say they were just "characters" but as they come from imagination this is equal to the rational side on the brain and just as important and real. The characters are manifestations of parts of what make us human. They really exist, if Manson percieved himself as these "characters" or was seen as them for one second then he was them. We are looking at ourselves always. Manson was kind enough to express this to the broader public. It is nothing simple, it is very dramatic. The impact is dramatic if you realise it or not. But it is not at all serious.

S.D.
01-23-2013, 02:40 PM
Sure, you can say they were just "characters" but as they come from imagination this is equal to the rational side on the brain and just as important and real. The characters are manifestations of parts of what make us human. They really exist, if Manson percieved himself as these "characters" or was seen as them for one second then he was them.
Perhaps I wasn't as clear about that as I would have liked.

They were facets of his personality, as valid as anything else he says or does to express himself, but that's rather the point, they were still part of the wider 'Marilyn Manson' ethos.
Wormboy, Omega, Adam Kadmon; they're fictions within the broader fact that is Manson himself. A good example would be when one tells an anecdote, you make it as exciting as possible, you inflect the events within it to give amusement, or pleasure to whoever is listening. That's what those characters were in relation to Manson's story.

Wormboy and the Antichrist Superstar were still Marilyn Manson, he simply evoked the tale he'd eventually retell during his autobiography to better translate the wider themes of the record itself. Mechanical Animals, conversely, was him telling a story before it had happened. Being exposed to the entertainment industry would undeniably 'destroy' some of the Antichrist Superstar mystery, as people learned more about Manson and his personality, sense of humour, and overall agenda as an artist. So Mechanical Animals was a calculated gesture, becoming what critics would have said about him before they had the chance to say it. Don't forget that Antichrist Superstar is of course, the story of someone becoming a 'Superstar'. Omega was the perfect translation of that to pastiche of what stardom actually represents.
Ostensibly, it was all still Manson. Just as Adam Kadmon was a boy leading a revolution that would envelop him, so did Manson's mission of trying to make people think, as he was wrongfully embroiled in the wider societal issues that contributed to Columbine. The Triptych is a masterful exercise in self-mythology, it's what Manson's been good at since day one.

shrubberyhorizon
01-23-2013, 03:38 PM
Ah, yes I agree with you. This is the very 'masculine' and rational side of the story. However, don't forget that Manson brought both masculine and feminine qualities to his artwork and his life. I always think of Manson as an alchemist (of course many do). Looking too factually, I have found, can completely destroy the art the same way it destroys the world. We can't forget the Moon in this story. Although I'm sure you already know this SD: the most intelligent user of this forum, surely.

Sans Agendum
01-23-2013, 04:06 PM
I think MM followed the story mapped out in the Triptych up through MA/HW. That was the height of popularity with MTV, arena tours, action figures, etc. From that point on, to me it seemed from GAOG almost making fun of everything about the character of MM and pop culture through THEOL where he was burning the commercial status down - he now seems to be at a place that reminds me more of where he was when he started the band. Of course with time, his ideas that he wants to share change - you can only share your view points of the world with it falling on deaf ears before you decide to talk about something else. People forget, Portrait and ACSS contain lyrics not written by some rock star out to change the world, these were still lyrics (poems) written by a pretty quiet guy who just wanted to create art, being inspired by what music, books and film he took in. That's where he seems to be now, MM has definitely decided not to go for a live large status but instead finding comfort in the basic essentials that allow him to create the kind of art he feels in the moment and share it with those who care to hear/see - and take care of his family. Having gone through the real life story of MM, he seems to be at a place now where the bloated rockstar the label propped up was sacrificed knowing it would always be this hollow shell of what he always wanted to do. His art now is still a reflection of society, not in the direct commentary way but as the personal story of a man who's only passion is to be an artist and how that was propelled into something larger that did allow him to share a larger artistic message but could only be sustained for so long in a world that does not care about art.

Maybe it's because he is older, and I am older - but I feel I relate much more to the type of artist he is now and the kind of things he expresses than when I was a kid taking in the concepts of ACSS-MA which no matter how I spin it where things a kid in middle school doesn't truly grasp until going through life.
I would like to believe this but everything in his interviews, music and shows says otherwise. There's nothing going on right now but self directed mysticism and glamor. He's not reflecting society anymore in the form of satire because he's become another genuine patron of it. The kind of person the younger Manson would ridicule and warn us about. This is all over the lyrics of every album. Becoming something he hates. Not wanting this. Do you think that he asked for this? Obviously the guy went through a psychological change, I think around before EMDM came out and has given in to actually becoming what he used to only sing about.

Cringeon
01-23-2013, 05:06 PM
I would like to believe this but everything in his interviews, music and shows says otherwise. There's nothing going on right now but self directed mysticism and glamor. He's not reflecting society anymore in the form of satire because he's become another genuine patron of it. The kind of person the younger Manson would ridicule and warn us about. This is all over the lyrics of every album. Becoming something he hates. Not wanting this. Do you think that he asked for this? Obviously the guy went through a psychological change, I think around before EMDM came out and has given in to actually becoming what he used to only sing about.I don't see the connection to anything MM "warned" about. Step back from being a MM fan and just look at him in the grand scheme of popular music. Sure, the guy is iconic but he's hardly the type of artist who is chasing headlines, MTV, Rolling Stone, Red Carpets, etc. If you told a younger MM that he would be able to sustain a career in music long enough that he can have the security to make the kind of art he wanted on his time, as an independent artist without having to go through any sort of censorship - doesn't seem like something anyone would ever take issue with. We probably view MM's message differently - for me it was just about being uncompromising in whatever you do and that's where it seems he is now. I find the whole message about being the product of America as just a statement for those times and not something he should be bound to. It's like he and Twiggy have shared, as long as they can do well enough to just make music together that's all they want to aim for. Sure, MM has hooked up with friends in film/TV more but I don't think it's anything more than a change in the industries of how there isn't this whole process of getting "rock stars" involved in projects. It's friends working with friends, which is something I like. I agree there was a change with what MM started saying, but it's not because of a change in his POV, but like I said how long do you let it fall on deaf ears. He knew he couldn't change the world, just make his statement as an artist. That is done, and now his statement is just to create art be it in whatever medium just to be able to create.

S.D.
01-23-2013, 05:09 PM
Ah, yes I agree with you. This is the very 'masculine' and rational side of the story. However, don't forget that Manson brought both masculine and feminine qualities to his artwork and his life. I always think of Manson as an alchemist (of course many do). Looking too factually, I have found, can completely destroy the art the same way it destroys the world. We can't forget the Moon in this story. Although I'm sure you already know this SD: the most intelligent user of this forum, surely.

That's very kind of you to say, thank you. The way I view it, you don't have to forego the allegorical joy of what Manson does by approaching his work with a clear head. If anything, it's the opposite. The fan who claims Manson's visual and thematic elements are meaningless, or separate to enjoyment of the music is as much a fool as the fan who thinks you're going to open a portal to Wonderland by playing the records backwards. You have to find a happy medium, which as you've suggested, is the very nature of 'Marilyn Manson'.

'Life Imitating Art' is a common phrase to use, and presumably why the topic author chose to appropriate it, but so far as I can see Manson's Golden Age mantras of "This isn't a show, this is my fucking life", and "I'm not an artist I'm a fucking work of art" are how it all works. Art imitates life, not the other way around. As new experiences and events cross his path, he writes about them. The audience either empathises with that or they don't. The thing to remember with 'I AM YOU' and Manson's critique of America, or the world at large, is that even from his present-day art loft with a collection of clandestine, weirdo friends, his sources for criticising anything are the same as they've always been. He reads, watches, and observes through a lens what the rest of humanity is doing, without ever having to be too involved in it.


There's nothing going on right now but self directed mysticism and glamor. He's not reflecting society anymore in the form of satire because he's become another genuine patron of it.
The last page of this topic has been focusing on the notion that all Manson's ever really been geared towards is self-directed mysticism and glamour. What else is it people expect him to say, or rather, how unclear are the messages he's championed for the past two decades that people can't use that to benefit their own lives?
This is what it really boils down to, fans always 'expect' something from Marilyn Manson, like he's always got to be critiquing things to be valid. The buttons have already been pushed, you can't get more succinct than the concepts on Antichrist Superstar, or Holy Wood. Even in the past few years, he'll use songs like We're From America to say "Pro-lifers oppose abortion so that we have more able-bodied young soldiers available to go abroad and die", or "Protest is meaningless when soapboxed via a picket sign slogan" on Blank And White. In the world of Wikileaks, the 'War On Terror', school shootings that are an expected normality rather than a national tragedy, there's not much more critical analysis this guy could muster up that would usurp anything he's already said. If I were that person, and following decades of my agit-prop entertainment, things had just gotten worse, then fuck it, I'd be filming meathooks in a woman's back, drinking Absinthe and writing 'Fuck You' on my face.

The hedonistic, childish, absurd Marilyn Manson is nothing new, it's just not always been at the forefront of what he's about.

A Better Messiah
01-23-2013, 10:49 PM
And then what self-fulfilling prophecy would we say Born Villain portrays? I think it's clear to say that The High End of Low is about the washed-up rockstar facade. (That's the impression I got anyways, from the live performance acts such as the stage crew holding up the lyrics for him to read from and the video cameras.) Eat Me, Drink Me was about the Gothic figure (vampirism, blood, mutilation, etc.) Perhaps BV is all in the title, but would that be anything new for him?

The Empirical Guy
01-24-2013, 06:05 AM
Hey Empirical Guy, I just found out we share(ed) a mutual interest.

Hint: For the Emperor

If that's the way you feel, then we share no real interests at all. You can keep your rotting corpse-god to yourself ;) But yes, PM me if you want to chat about that.


I think MM followed the story mapped out in the Triptych up through MA/HW. That was the height of popularity with MTV, arena tours, action figures, etc. From that point on, to me it seemed from GAOG almost making fun of everything about the character of MM and pop culture through THEOL where he was burning the commercial status down - he now seems to be at a place that reminds me more of where he was when he started the band. Of course with time, his ideas that he wants to share change - you can only share your view points of the world with it falling on deaf ears before you decide to talk about something else. People forget, Portrait and ACSS contain lyrics not written by some rock star out to change the world, these were still lyrics (poems) written by a pretty quiet guy who just wanted to create art, being inspired by what music, books and film he took in. That's where he seems to be now, MM has definitely decided not to go for a live large status but instead finding comfort in the basic essentials that allow him to create the kind of art he feels in the moment and share it with those who care to hear/see - and take care of his family. Having gone through the real life story of MM, he seems to be at a place now where the bloated rockstar the label propped up was sacrificed knowing it would always be this hollow shell of what he always wanted to do. His art now is still a reflection of society, not in the direct commentary way but as the personal story of a man who's only passion is to be an artist and how that was propelled into something larger that did allow him to share a larger artistic message but could only be sustained for so long in a world that does not care about art.

Maybe it's because he is older, and I am older - but I feel I relate much more to the type of artist he is now and the kind of things he expresses than when I was a kid taking in the concepts of ACSS-MA which no matter how I spin it where things a kid in middle school doesn't truly grasp until going through life.

That's it exactly, I think a lot of people look at the ACSS era and think he was representing that final piece of the Triptych story, but the irony is he was living it in reverse order to how he released it. Although it falls at the end of the 'story', it was written by an idealistic young man who thought he could set out to destroy or, at least, change the America he resented. He then became the "big rock and roll star" he had sung about in Lunchbox, but this may not be represented through the obvious era of MA. As you mentioned with GAOG, it was almost a parody of everything up until that point - while maybe not as obvious as the Omega persona, for those paying attention it was, in some ways, a far stronger attack on himself and celebrity status. Then in recent years it's as though he's worked to destroy all that, to revert to someone making art for art's sake - he had to "Kill the king" of his big time celebrity status, get off the major label, and now he's back to making his art with no real thought other than pleasing himself, albeit with more life experience than the first time round. The Triptych is, after all, cyclical.

Having said all that, I'm sure none of this was planned out on Manson's part. It's just a case of things turned out that way after he 'predicted' it. Self-fulfilling prophecy, Pogo's time machine, etc.

Sans Agendum
01-24-2013, 07:57 PM
I am a bit a spiritualist so I don't share the idea that someone is 'just a rock n roll dude' and I don't think Manson thinks so either. You can go ahead and pass off a lot of what he says as simple provocateur styling if you want but you'd be speaking more from your own personal perspective of observation just as much as the person who still perceives and accepts the notion that there is more going on behind the veil than we realize.

I see Manson's story as a great many lessons to be learned from in just how much personal disaster one can accumulate while gazing into the abyss and taking such a huge amount of negative attention towards one's self. How dehumanizing the accumulation of knowledge and wisdom can be. How it can be dangerous to take on a persona at the risk of actually becoming possessed by it to where you do not know who you are anymore. Out trying to find something new. Digging too deep. Now it's too late.


And then what self-fulfilling prophecy would we say Born Villain portrays? I think it's clear to say that The High End of Low is about the washed-up rockstar facade. (That's the impression I got anyways, from the live performance acts such as the stage crew holding up the lyrics for him to read from and the video cameras.) Eat Me, Drink Me was about the Gothic figure (vampirism, blood, mutilation, etc.) Perhaps BV is all in the title, but would that be anything new for him?

I feel that after Holywood, from GAOG onward, we're dealing with Manson going through the process of living out the triptych. He was pretty damn big with GAOG. Got married and was in his prime. After that he pretty much seemed to have lost himself by his own admittance. He said he didn't know what he wanted to do or be with EMDM. He also lost two ideal love interests. He fell from grace officially with The High End of Low.

Now I feel with ACSS Manson was more satirical and spoke from things he was more reading about in Neitchze and Lavey and studying up on free mason stuff and conspiracy theories. It was more of an experiment and he followed through with playing the part of the bad guy. I'm saying I now get the feeling that Manson has more personally BECOME the mindset he was only SPEAKING from previously. He's not the biblical 'Antichrist' or anything, but he certainly has hardened emotionally as of late and become more ready to embrace being the character that the public labeled him as.

Not a demon who screams at you from behind smeared mascara, but a true con-man who will smile to your face, befriend you and then betray you. His recent 'friends' have not had such glowing reports of the guy.

AssetReign
01-24-2013, 08:27 PM
When friends is in quotes that usually indicates the ppl aren't truly your friends. I will say if you're loyal to him, he's loyal to you and vice versa.

Sans Agendum
01-24-2013, 08:30 PM
When friends is in quotes that usually indicates the ppl aren't truly your friends. I will say if you're loyal to him, he's loyal to you and vice versa.

That would be why I did it. Here's your prize.

AssetReign
01-24-2013, 08:32 PM
That would be why I did it. Here's your prize.

How can you "betray" ppl who aren't truly your friends?
I don't need a "prize." Your sneering condescension is always prize enough. :)

Sans Agendum
01-24-2013, 08:36 PM
Delete

Sans Agendum
01-24-2013, 08:39 PM
How can you "betray" ppl who aren't truly your friends?
I don't need a "prize." Your sneering condescension is always prize enough. :)

Sorry. I'm not used to people being genuinely interested in my opinion and sometimes expect them to understand what I'm saying at first beat.

How civil have things seemed between, say Shia or Rob Zombie at last glance?

I'm simply saying that the Manson we deal with today is the one merely written of in the past. In his book, Long Hard Road Out of Hell, he even described Marilyn Manson as someone who could become your best friend, gain your complete confidence and then stab you in the back for his own gain.

I believe Manson has truly reached a point where he feels he can justify to himself, even the most selfish behavior.

AssetReign
01-24-2013, 08:45 PM
Shia and Zombie aren't good examples of his friends. If you're a true & loyal friend to him he's a true & loyal friend to you.

Sans Agendum
01-24-2013, 10:00 PM
Shia and Zombie aren't good examples of his friends. If you're a true & loyal friend to him he's a true & loyal friend to you.

Right. Ones who have been with him for the long haul. Like Pogo.

Try not to be so defensive and you'll see I have a point.

AssetReign
01-24-2013, 10:16 PM
Right. Ones who have been with him for the long haul. Like Pogo.

Try not to be so defensive and you'll see I have a point.

Defensive? okay moving on from this convo because I thought you were being serious until you brought up Shia, Zombie, and Pogo.

Sans Agendum
01-24-2013, 10:19 PM
Defensive? okay moving on from this convo because I thought you were being serious until you brought up Shia, Zombie, and Pogo.

I can't name anyone else in the industry with anything so nasty to say about Trent Reznor or Pogo or Daisy, yet they all seem to have the same opinion of Manson...

And where do you form your opinion of these people from outside of their relation to Manson? If it wasn't for their beefs with him could you truly draw an intelligent criticism? From what I've seen so far I severely fucking doubt it.

I'm done arguing. I stated my piece. You stated yours. If you have more to say, send me a private message.

necrospasms
01-25-2013, 06:08 AM
'The Antichrist' needed to look like just that, an Antichrist. It wasn't supposed to be imposing to anyone other than people stupid enough to believe it was true. To everyone else, Marilyn Manson was simply an articulate, funny, well-read rock star who made cracking records. Little has changed, he just doesn't need to antagonise anyone now.




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