Inside the Hits (Volume One)

Editor’s Board — Final

[Footage File LisbH sec. 5]

HARVEY: I mean, they actually wrote their own songs, but Mickie would only put those on B-sides. All of the A-sides were covers of other bands’ music. And I mean, sometimes it was old, old music. Peter used to complain about it. But when Mickie brought them this song… there was no complaining.

[Footage File MostM sec. 21]

MICKIE: I mean, it’s just haunting. You can’t even hear the song without thinking about it for days afterward. And even if you do stop thinking about it after a week or two, it comes back when you least expect it. It’s terrifying.

[Footage: vid File LeckD sec. 4, tuning guitar; aud File LeckD sec. 6]

LEK: I never heard the lyrics before I put together the solo. It would have been too much for me to bear, I think. Those lyrics… you — (chokes slightly) — I’m sorry. Those lyrics are bloody terrifying.

[Footage: File LisbH sec. 9]

HARVEY: I still don’t know where Mickie got the song. At first, I thought he wrote it and he was just trying to pass it off as a cover because of what it might have said about his own psyche. But people have told me that it wasn’t his song, and that it actually had quite a history behind it. Still, though — the fact that he brought it to us at all says a fair bit about his psyche, dunnit?

[Footage: File MostM sec. 32]

MICKIE: No, I didn’t write it. I pity the man who did, really. I mean, yes, I cut the original.
INTERVEWER: Cut it how?
MICKIE: Well, it had verses. The bits I used were chorus. But the verses of the original… I think the songwriter put them in because he thought it would tone down the horror of the original. It didn’t, and in fact, it just gave you a brief respite before the reality of the narrator’s psychological state was brought up again. I trimmed it.
INTERVIEWER: Why?
MICKIE: Let me tell you a story. I was driving one day, and I passed by the scene of an accident. It was a very bad one, and there were no survivors. I could see the bodies by the side of the road, and those memories are… burned into my mind. You see? But then later, on that very same drive, I came upon the scene of another terrible accident. More bodies. More blood.
INTERVIEWER: (long pause) …I’m sorry, I’m not sure that I follow. How does that have to do with you trimming the original verses?
MICKIE: When I tell the story of that day, if you’re listening, I’ll tell you exactly what I saw. I’ll tell you the positions of the bodies. What parts were mangled. What parts were missing. I can tell you anything you want to know about that day. And d’you know what part nobody ever asks about is? …Nobody ever, ever, ever asks about the drive in between the crashes.

[Footage: File NoonP sec. 11]

PETER: I saw the lyrics, and at first… well, to be honest, at first, I didn’t pay any attention to them. I was young, the band was becoming famous, and I never thought Harvey — our manager, Harvey — would ever let our producer, Mickie, give us a song with so much weight to it. But when I actually sat down and read them… it’s easy to understand how it affected so many people. I mean, it went to number one.

[Footage: File LeckD sec. 10]

LEK: Right off the bat, y’know, you think the narrator is deeply disturbed. He as much as admits to having a personality disorder in which his identity has been compromised. But then, you learn that he’s in a relationship. You worry for the safety of the woman. And you learn that she’s vulnerable, and you almost panic for her safety with this madman. But then comes the twist.

[Footage: File NoonP sec. 43]

PETER: She’s not vulnerable after all… and in fact, she may be the reason he’s mad, right? She’s a serial offender, with more than half a dozen past victims. It’s even scarier that you don’t know for sure what happened to them, exactly. I mean, obviously at least one of them is dead.

[Footage: File LeckD sec. 10]

LEK: And you find out exactly what all her victims had in common… and it ties in directly with the identity issue the narrator has. Except now, you don’t even know if it’s an identity issue, exactly. Maybe he’s partially right — about his name, anyway. But maybe he doesn’t think he’s royalty. Maybe he’s just been so warped by this predatory woman that he’s in a relationship with that he’s not able to see his inevitable fate coming…. It gives me chills.

[Footage: File NoonP sec. 43]

PETER: And then, it stabs you right through the ears. He knows his fate. He knows he’s trapped. And he’s not able to communicate this to whomever the next victim might be, directly — she clearly has too much control over him. So instead, the lyrics simply cycle back through, until you realize that you, the listener, may be the next victim. If she can get a hold of your own grasp on your identity, you might be the ninth one she takes on.

[Footage: File LeckD sec. 10]

LEK: And you realize that it’s too late. You’re every bit as trapped as the narrator.

[Footage: File Lisb.H sec. 1]

HARVEY: Frankly, sometimes I’m surprised they ever let us put it on the air.

[Footage: vid. File HermH sec. 119, concert: concertgoers screaming and crying; aud File HermH sec. 118, concert: song]

“I’m Henry the Eighth, I am.
Henry the Eighth I am, I am.
I got married to the widow next door;
She’s been married seven times before,
And every one was a Henry! (Henry!)
Never had a Willie or a Sam! (No Sam!)
I’m her eighth old man, I’m Henry:
Henry the Eighth, I am.
(Second verse — same as the first!)
I’m Henry the Eighth, I am.
Henry the Eighth, I am, I am…”

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