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Lady Gaga “Bloody Mary” Song Meaning Explained

Lady Gaga released the album Born This Way in 2011, and one of the popular singles from that album is Bloody Mary, but do you know the meaning behind the track? If you want the Lady Gaga Bloody Mary song meaning explained, then read on to learn all about it! 

The Origins 

Bloody Mary was the second single from the album Born This Way by Lady Gaga. The inspiration for this song was Mary Magdalene, and it was an important topic for her because she grew up Catholic and had to pray to both Jesus and God when she was young. She had felt it was easier to pray to a woman, so she chose to begin praying to Mother Mary and Mary Magdalene. 

SMP Entertainment, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

As she got older and became a famous pop star, she started to pray to her for strength. She also talked about how she felt brave and empowered writing Born This Way because of how in the biblical times women were often stoned for acting inappropriately or not behaving in the way the Bible believed women should behave. She talked about how the lyrics of Bloody Mary were written from the perspective of Mary Magdalene herself.

Lady Gaga wasn’t the only one who wrote and produced the track as she received assistance from Paul Blair, Clinton Sparks, and Fernando Garibay who are all credited on the song too. This track has elements of trace, synth-pop, and electropop, which are similar to other songs she released on this album. 

The Music Video 

In the music video, Bloody Mary follows the theme of Mary Magdalene and switches between dark demonic tones with red lighting to create the vibe of a more sweet time when it’s daylight and full of love and positivity.

LADY GAGA - BLOODY MARY [MUSIC VIDEO]

She dances in the video in a way that’s both upbeat and charming and then goes into more twisted dance moves. You can see that she is also dressed up similar to how Mary Magdalene would have been dressed during biblical times, so her theme is on point throughout the video. 

Chart Performance

When Bloody Mary was released in 2011, it reached number one on the Lebanon Top 20 Airplay chart, but this song sadly did not chart outside of Lebanon at that time. 

However, it was used in a TikTok video in November 2022 sped up for the dance that Wednesday Addams performed in the Netflix show Wednesday. Originally, she was dancing to Goo Goo Muck by The Cramps, but once the TikTok video showed off the dance with Bloody Mary behind it, the track gained in streams. It soon was released as a single in Italy and France, and then to American radio. 

Bloody Mary hit the Billboard Hot 100 chart at number 68 but quickly rose to 41 after 12 weeks on the chart. It also landed on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart and reached number 23, while on the Mainstream Top 40 chart, the song made it to number 10.

On the Adult Top 40 chart, it reached number three. It took a TikTok video 12 years later after its release for this song to land on the Billboard charts where it has now sold more than 92,000 copies digitally. 

The Lyrics 

The lyrics in the song focus on Mary Magdalene, and it moves between demonic and dark to sweet and light. You can see the empowerment and thought that she would focus on love and positivity instead of darkness and evil when she writes “I won’t crucify the things you do, I won’t cry for you” and then when she says “…see (See), When you’re gone I’ll still be Bloody Mary.” 

In these lyrics, you can see that Lady Gaga was of the belief that Mary Magdalene was a rockstar and that even though she faced this incredible pain, she was able to pick up the pieces and keep living and doing good. Drying the tears away and focusing more on helping others and continuing to live how Jesus would want her to. The demonic and then sweet singing is a contrast between the horrible things that happened versus Mary Magdalene choosing love instead of revenge. 

So…What’s It About? 

Bloody Mary is similar to the other songs that were released on Born This Way, meaning it’s religious, and specifically, this song is about Mary Magdalene. Lady Gaga believed that not only was she human but also a divine spirit and was such a strong person when Jesus died for the sins of us all. That being said, she also thought that she shows emotion and is relatable because she gets upset that she needed to let him go and likely cried when that happened. 

In Bloody Mary, Lady Gaga looks at things from the perspective of Mary Magdalene and puts herself in that position when Jesus was crucified. She referred to her as a real rockstar girlfriend, meaning she stood strong and kept on teaching and spreading love while all of these bad things were happening right in front of her. Even though she was dealing with grief, Mary Magdalene was able to dance through it all and wipe the tears away to focus on the good. 

Media Reception 

The media reception was generally speaking positive for Bloody Mary with a lot of reviews saying it was spooky yet the production value of the song was impressive. It is thought to be one of the best tracks on Born This Way, with Dan Martin from NME saying that it was graceful and classy. Neil McCormick from The Telegraph said that it was elegant and a very sweet love song. 

Lady Gaga was praised for her vocal performance in the song with her voice sometimes seeming to melt, and it was referred to as a track you could easily dance to. Not everyone was a fan of the song though, including Jody Rosen from Rolling Stone who said that the atmosphere of the track was gothic and that it was lyrically written like a horrible high school poem.

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