Le Fantôme de l’Opéra

Day 20) T is for Translated: Choose a book that was Translated from one language to English

PhantomoftheOpera

The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux

Yes, I know I said I wouldn’t talk about this book. However, as I was trying to think of books I like that were originally in another language, I couldn’t think of anything but this book and Jules Verne’s novels.

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I already reviewed two Verne books, so with nothing else coming to mind, I decided to review The Phantom of the Opera.

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Gaston Leroux studied to be a lawyer, but when his father died, he found himself a millionaire. He immediately quit school and went on a big spending/gambling spree losing everything.

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Afterwards, he began to work for a newspaper, doubling as a court reporter and a drama critic. As he toured the opera, ballets, plays, etc.; and heard different stories about what went on in the theaters, it gave him an idea.

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With that he published The Phantom of the Opera as a serial from 1909-1910, being translated and published in English in 1911. The story is told from the viewpoint of an interviewer as he researches his subject and tries to tell the history of this Phantom.

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Growing up I just loved this book so much. I used to check out the children’s version again and again; graduating to the unabridged when I grew older.

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So here I am going to do a slightly different post, I am going to focus on one character: the Phantom.

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I just love him:

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Erik is a wanderer. After being hurt by so many he no longer considers him as having an nationality or family.

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His pain originates from when he was a child and his own parents were too disgusted to see his “true form.”

“When my own father never saw me and when my mother, so as not to see me, made me a present of my first mask.” (pg. 130)

Aw, man.

Aw, man.

He is so often used to being considered as death, that he has even prepared him room as such. All in black and even sleeps in a coffin. How sad is that? Poor guy!

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But even in that ugliness and sadness there is beauty. He is a musical genius with a voice like no other.

“He heard a very captivating voice…Raoul had never heard anything more absolutely and heroically sweet, more gloriously insidious, more delicate, more powerful, in short, more irresistibly triumphant…nothing could describe the passion with which the voice sang…” (pg. 98)

Erik is very intelligent and has done many things before coming to the opera house and meeting Christine.

“You must not think, Raoul, that he [Erik] is simply a man who amuses himself by living underground. He does things that no man could do; he knows things which nobody in the world knows.” (pg. 135)

I mean he built THAT opera house and created numerous trap doors, spring sets, his own secret underground home. And that’s not the only thing he has created. He built palaces for Sultans and Kings; but always being betrayed by them as they want him dead so that they alone can posses his genius.

right in the feels broken heart

One day the Phantom comes upon Christine and decides to help assist her to become a fantastic singer.

“From that time onward, the voice and I became great friends.” (pg. 116)

They spend years together as the Phantom puts his all into teaching her and helping her. Then one day Christine spots Raoul and tells the phantom all about seeing him. And the voice disappears. Christine is anxious and scared. She knows she is nothing without him, she will shrivel up into a has-been.

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The next day the Phantom comes and tells her he has to leave her.

“The voice was there, spoke to me with great sadness and told me plainly that, if I must bestow my heart on earth, there was nothing for the voice to do but go back to heaven.” (pg. 117)

You see, no threats. No harsh words. The Phantom would have simply backed off if she loved another. He would be heartbroken, but that would be the end of it. Except…

“I swore to the voice that you were no more than a brother to me nor ever would be and that my heart was incapable of any earthly love.” (pg. 117)

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You see that!!!! You see that!!! She purposely leads on the Phantom because she just wants to use him. She doesn’t love him, she doesn’t care for him, as she has stated before:

“[to Raoul] And that, dear, first revealed to me that I loved you.” (pg. 117)

you're evil

She knew, but she had a good thing and didn’t want to see it disappear. Now she tells Raoul that she “lied only because she thought she had no chance with Raoul.” But is that even the truth? She already admitted to playing the Phantom, she’s probably playing Raoul too. He’s rich and interested, and now she’s going to play the little helpless victim to catch him.

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So you know what, I never feel sorry for her. She created this whole mess as she only cared about herself and not what her false declarations did to people. She almost kills hundreds because of her selfishness. I feel bad for the Phantom. Poor guy, who is completely crushed by her. He picked the wrong woman.

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Then the Phantom carries her off underground into his home.

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Now I admit, his carrying her off wasn’t the right thing to do. He should have asked her instead of just carrying her like that. But what does he do next? He confesses that he isn’t an angel or teacher but that he is the Phantom of the Opera, its architect, etc.

“He [Erik] feels me with horror and I do not hate him. How can I hate him Raoul? Think of Erik at my feet…he accuses himself, he curses himself, he implores my forgiveness!…He loves me! He lays at my feet an immense and tragic love…He has carried me off for love!” (pg. 125)

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He treats her wonderfully. He respects her as a thing of beauty and doesn’t harm her or touch her. And when she is upset and wants to leave?

“And, when I stood up, Raoul, and told him that I could only despise him if he did not, then and there, give me my liberty…he offered it…” (pg. 125)

See he isn’t a crazy killer or psychotic (yet). He loves her and respects her wishes. She’s the viper, she’s evil as she chooses to stay there even though she doesn’t love him, she just wants to use him.

“For he sang. And I listened…and stayed!” (pg. 125)

She falls asleep and then wakes up in a whole different room, properly freaked. BUT then spots a note left to her by the Phantom.

“My dear Christine, you need have no concern as to your fate. You have no better nor more respectful friend in the world than myself.” (pg. 126)

He just let her alone, as he sees her as the kindest and most divine woman; respecting her. He also purchases tons of things for her in order to make the place truly home.

How sweet!

How sweet!

But Christine is not happy. She wants out. She is angry with the Phantom, even though he has given her everything! All she wants is to see his face as “no honest man would wear a mask.” But that is the one place Erik won’t give.

No thank youhowaboutno

Then Erik mentions how most of her time with him will be musical practice. She is angry as he wants her to stay five days, then he will let her go again as she will either love him (hope) or pity him. But Christine is now upset that he won’t let her go now, but hey he offered you before.

She cannot make up her mind.

She cannot make up her mind.

The real issue Christine has with the Phantom is his skull-like face. This is what breaks her and makes her horrified and disgusted. She can’t leave well enough alone, and asks him to play for her, plotting her deception. When he is too worked up in the music she snatches the mask off.

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Now she thinks he is disgusting, and here is where he makes his first incredibly bad decision.

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He tells Christine that he can’t let her go. He knows that she sees him only as a monster, and if returned to the surface would tell others of the “monster”, causing them to be riled up, create a mob, and set out to kill him.

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Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!

Christine, the little actress she is, starts playing to the areas he has been insecure. She tells him that he is genius, his music causes her to forget his looks. She even burns his mask to symbolize that she is “above” such things. In reality she is playing him  from every angle, earning his trust so that he is willing to believe she actually loves him and won’t harm him. Letting her go.

you're evil

Christine acts as if he is a true monster, but the Phantom has a compassionate heart. She asks if she can pretend to “be engaged”, playacting, with Raoul and the Phantom agrees.

“He said, ‘I trust you, Christine. M. de Chagny [Raoul] is in love with you and going abroad. Before he goes, I want him to be as happy as I am.” (pg. 134)

How can someone be unfeeling when they consider what their arch rival’s feelings?

How sweet!

How sweet!

Eventually, the Phantom figures out the truth, that this was all a set up and steals Christine away; that final act of betrayal being the straw that broke the camels back.

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I mean he really believed that someone had fallen in love with him.

“It is my wish…my wish to let her go; and she will come again…for she loves me!…All this will end in marriage…” (pg. 206)

He thinks his dream and true love is in his grasp!

“…Now I want to live like everybody else. I want a wife like everybody else and to take her out on Sundays. I have invented a mask that makes me look like anybody…All I have ever wanted was to be loved for myself…” (214)

The thing I really hate about the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical is how the changed the relationship between Christine and the Phantom with her thinking if him as her father and making Raoul less of the pansy he was. But most of all they make the Phantom a total psychi and murderer. He doesn’t really kill people in the book, unless it is for self-preservation. We only witness three: two were out trying to get him, and the third he accidentally kills Raoul’s brother, who when searching for him falls into a trap. The Phantom really regrets having killed him. And he also does bring the chandelier down, which injures and kills. How many, we don’t know.

Phantom of the Opera chandelier

He then gives Christina an option. She can choose Raoul and the Opera house will be blown up (as Erik has hidden dynamite under the floor when he built it) or she can choose him and save everyone. I have to admit that forcing her to choose marrying him was not right or what she should do, but people who have been betrayed often do not think logically but just want to heart the person who hurt them.

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But in the end he let’s Christine go, because she finally gave him the one thing he has most wanted: companionship and love:

“I tell you I kissed her just like that, on her forehead…and she did not draw back her forehead from my lips! (pg. 247)

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Poor Erik!

“Poor, unhappy Erik! Shall we pity him? Shall we curse him? He asked only to be “some one,” like everybody else. But he was too ugly! And he had to hide his genius or use it to play tricks with, when, with an ordinary face, he would have been one of the most distinguished of mankind! He had a heart that could have held the empire of the world; and, in the end, he had to content himself with a cellar. Ah, yes, we must pity the opera ghost.” (pg. 259)

Leave me alone so I can cry over the death of my fictional characters

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 I think what resonates the most with this story is how relatable the Phantom was. Who of us hasn’t at one time hated how we looked?

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Had our heart broken:

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Been betrayed by someone we thought cared about us?

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Or felt we hadn’t received the recognition we deserved?

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What else can I say?

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Why yes I do!

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Starting in 2015, I decided to dress up “Jane Austen” in Halloween costumes. Check her out as the Bride of Frankenstein.

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Stupid Not to Read Jane Austen Quote

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To start the 30 Day Challenge from the beginning, go to It Was a Pleasure to Burn: Fahrenheit 451

For the previous post, go to Each Illustration is a Little Story. If You Watch Them, In a Few Minutes They Tell You a Tale: The Illustrated Man

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For more on The Phantom of the Opera, go to How to Meet the Perfect Guy

For more on Gaston Leroux, go to Fantom of the Opera

For more Jane Austen quotes, go to Midnight in Austenland

For more Silverstein, go to The End by Silverstein

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Today’s carol is The First White Christmas from the claymation, The First Christmas:The Story of the First Christmas Snow.

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I couldn’t find any info on the song, but they play it in the opening and ending credits. I always thought it was cute, and it tends to get stuck in my head.

I couldn’t find a video unfortunately, or a good link to watch the film (as they took down the best one).

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For more on The First Christmas:The Story of the First Christmas Snow, go to 25 More Films of Christmas

For more Christmas Carols, go to She Struck Him as a Fixer-Upper, a Block of Clay Ready for Pygmalion’s Chisel: The Overnight Socialite

Summertime

Well Happy First Day of Summer! I’m sure for many of you out there you are very happy about “seeing the sun again”.

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However, we’ve had the sun and over 100 degree weather already.

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So even though we’ve already been “celebrating”:

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I thought what better way to mark today than with a song?

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Na-Na-Na- My Chemical Romance

Summertime by My Chemical Romance

So this song doesn’t really have anything to do with the Summer, but I just couldn’t help posting it today as the symmetry was so nice.

So this song comes off the Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys album. Like every album that MCR makes this one follows a story rather than being a collection of songs. In this one, the year is 2019, a post-apocalyptic California based on/referencing a lot of films (like Blade Runner, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, Mad Max, The Karate Kid, Dredd/Judge Dredd, Star Wars etc.)

Each band member has an alter-ego Gerard Way being Party Poison”, Ray Toro is Jet Star, Frank Iero is Fun Ghoul, and Mikey Way is Kobra Kid. All of which look really hot in their rebel wear/masks. There is just something to be said for vigilantes who wear masks. 🙂

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Anyways, this song is a love song.

Love Passion

Or at least this is how I interpret the song. To me the song is about these people growing up and living in this horrible world; doing their best to get by but scared that the next day they will give in and give up the fight; or even worse turn into the people they are fighting: “terrified of what I’d be
as a kid from what I’ve seen”.

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But then they meet their match, and even though the world may be crumbling, love makes everything better. With them they can be happy, even in a world that is bleaker than bleak: “turn my headphones up real loud I don’t think I need them now ’cause you stopped the noise.”

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I really enjoyed the sweetness of the melody and the lyrics. To me it is how even when we are at our darkest moments, we can be lifted out by just one thing. One more fantastic number by MCR.

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When the lights go out
Will you take me with you
And carry all this broken bone
Through six years down in crowded rooms
And highways I call home?
Something I can’t know ’til now.
‘Til you pick me off the ground
With a brick in hand, your lip-gloss smile,
Your scraped-up knees.

And if you stay I would even wait all night
Or until my heart explodes.
How long?
‘Til we find our way in the dark and out of harm
You can run away with me anytime you want

Terrified of what I’d be
As a kid from what I’ve seen
Every single day when people try
And put the pieces back together
Just to smash them down
Turn my headphones up real loud
I don’t think I need them now
‘Cause you stopped the noise.

And if you stay I would even wait all night
Or until my heart explodes.
How long?
‘Til we find our way in the dark and out of harm
You can run away with me anytime you want

Well, anytime you want
Well, anytime you want

Don’t walk away [3x]

‘Cause if you stay I would even wait all night
Or until my heart explodes.
How long?
Until we find our way in the dark and out of harm.
You can run away with me
You can write it on your arm
You can run away with me anytime you want

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For more from the Danger Days album, go to Na-Na-Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)

For more My Chemical Romance, go to I’m So FANcy!

For more of my favorite songs, go to Crocodile Rock

For more on Tiffanie Debartolo, go to Fanning All Over the Place

For more holiday posts, go to Dinner at Dad’s

Remember, Remember The 5th of November

V for vendetta V remember the 5th of november

So today is Guy Fawkes Day and you know what that means…

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So this something I actually have to thank my ex-boyfriend for. He may have been a cheating scumbag that at times I really want to punch in the face (or kick in the junk)

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But he did introduce me to some great musicV for Vendetta, and The Sandman Chronicles.

As it is the 5th of November, it is time to honor it and V. V is amazing. First of all he’s played by Hugo Weaving.

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I know, what an amazing actor!!! He has some serious fighter skills!

This was my first date with my ex and all I could do was swoon over him. V, that is not my ex.

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Besides being an epic fighter, he’s a man with a message and something to fight for.

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Now do I agree with everything he does? No. He never should have cut Evey’s hair. A girl’s hair is more than hair, it is a part of their identity, a mark of their femininity. What he did was just wrong there.

See Hook agrees with me.

See Hook agrees with me.

But you can’t help but be swayed by him. He is so eloquent!

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In fact, I became so enthralled that I actually wrote a song about the film from V to Evey. I composed it as I was biking to school and was unable to write it down. Sadly, by the time I got to class I couldn’t remember much. This is about all I can recall:

“I cut off all your hair,

But I swear to you I care

Because I’ve got a vendetta to win your heart

(Win your heart) (Win your heart)”

Silly huh? But what’s a fangirl to do?

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So today I have a proposition for you all. Now none of you under obligation:

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So last year my friend Benita, who is also a huge fan, and I were discussing the film. She suggested that we should tag walls with Vs on November 5th to honor him. I thought that was a great idea, but didn’t want to get in trouble for vandalism. I thought we should do it in chalk, as it washes off, but that’s when I came up with a better idea!

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But I thought what could make this 5th of November really special would be if we would post this picture on our facebook walls.

Remember_remember the 5th of NOvember V for Vendetta

And then on 5 of our friends’ walls asking them to do the same. If we all work together we can cover the world!!! Think about it!

V-for-Vendetta-2005-movie-quote Idea live forever

And never forget:

V for vendetta V remember the 5th of november

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For more on dystopian futures, go to In Their Proper Place

For more on hot masked men, go to I’m Batman!

For more on Hugo Weaving, go to Beast or Man

For more films based on books, go to What Have We Done to Each Other?

For more on Lylod Alexander, go to A Hidden Wonder

For more of my favorite quotes, go to There’s Nothing Out There. Nothing in the Mist

I’m Batman!

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Now I’m not pulling an Alfred, I really am Batman. Why do you ask? Why I think I’m Batman? I don’t think, I know. How?

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So yeah…

Dean Winchester Batman

Yep, it’s true. And I’m going to stand for justice!

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Comment below as to who you are!

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For more on Batman, go to A Twist on Wrecking Ball

For more quizzes, go to Unbound

For more on Supernatural, go to You Can’t Have Just One!

Na-Na-Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)

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Yep this is me. Every time there is a song I love, I sing EVERYTHING. This is especially true in

Na-Na-Na- My Chemical Romance

Yep, another My Chemical Romance post!

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So this song is off their album Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, and like all MCR albums, follows a story rather than just being individual songs. It took over a year to create the album, and the band wrote over 36 songs, not of all they kept. This story is set in the year 2019, a post-apocalyptic California.  There are a few willing to stand up to the tyrants, these rebel forces called Killjoys, of which MCR is a part of. The music videos and songs reference a lot of films, such as Blade Runner, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, Mad Max, The Karate Kid, Dredd/Judge Dredd etc.

Each band member has an alter-ego Gerard Way being Party Poison”, Ray Toro is Jet Star, Frank Iero is Fun Ghoul, and Mikey Way is Kobra Kid. All of which look really hot in their rebel wear/masks. There is just something to be said for vigilantes who wear masks. 🙂

mCR

The guide for the Killjoys is a pirate radio DJ named Dr. Death Defying who is voiced by Steve Montano.  The music video of ‘”Na Na Na” shows the Killjoys’ daily lives until Korse (the evil corporation) defeats them and captures The Girl, in which a later song they have to go rescue her back. 

Now the lyrics and video are just AMAZING! The music just gets you pumped!

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I think it is one of their best works yet.

The future is bulletproof
The aftermath is secondary
It’s time to do it now and do it loud
Killjoys, make some noise

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Drugs, gimme drugs, gimme drugs
I don’t need it but I’ll sell what you got
Take the cash and I’ll keep it
Eight legs to the wall, hit the gas, kill ’em all
And we crawl, and we crawl, and we crawl
You be my detonator

Love, gimme love, gimme love
I don’t need it but I’ll take what I want from your heart
And I’ll keep it in a bag, in a box
Put an X on the floor
Gimme more, gimme more, gimme more
Shut up and sing it with me

From mall security
To every enemy
We’re on your property
Standing in V-formation
Let’s blow an artery
Eat plastic surgery
Keep your apology
Give us more detonation

(More, gimme more, gimme more)
Oh, let me tell you ’bout the sad man
Shut up and let me see your jazz hands
Remember when you were a madman
Thought you was Batman

Dean Winchester Batman

And hit the party with a gas can
Kiss me you animal

You run the company
F*** like a Kennedy
I think we’d rather be
Burning your information
Let’s blow an artery
Eat plastic surgery
Keep your apology
Give us more detonation

And right here, right now
All the way in Battery City
The little children raised their open filthy palms
Like tiny daggers up to heaven
And all the juvie halls
And the Ritalin rats ask angels
Made from neon and fucking garbage
Scream out “What will save us?”
And the sky opened up

Everybody wants to change the world
Everybody wants to change the world
But no one, no one wants to die
Wanna try, wanna try, wanna try, wanna try, wanna try now
I’ll be your detonator

Make no apology
It’s death or victory
On my authority
Crash and burn
Young and loaded
Drop like a bulletshell
Dress like a sleeper cell
I’d rather go to hell
Than be in purgatory
Cut my hair
Gag and bore me
Pull this pin
Let this world explode

MCR

MCR

And guess what?

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Can’t Wait!

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For more on My Chemical Romance, go to I Don’t Love You

For more of my favorite songs, go to Red Rubber Ball

For more on rebellions, go to Viva La Révolution

For more on Supernatural, go to It’s Time

For more on Batman, go to A Twist on Wrecking Ball

For more on Dean Winchestergo to Carry On My Wayward Son

For more on Dredd (2012), go to Part VII: It Was Said One Night