I like a good pop song as much as the next guy, but sometimes I can’t help but wonder what was going through the artists heads when I hear such ludicrous, overtly melodramatic lyrics. Recently, I had the opportunity (or misfortune) of realizing how insane Bruno Mars comes off in his newest single. It got me thinking about all of the songs we hear that just aren’t thought through very well. And so I bring you five of my favorite over-the-top love songs along with a thorough lecture on the impracticality of each song. It’s time to get literal.
Grenade, Bruno Mars
Bruno Mars is one intense guy. In this song, he tells a girl that he’s so in love that he would “catch a grenade” for her. That’s not all he’d do. He’d also take a bullet straight through his brain, throw his hand on a blade, and jump in front of a train for her. Despite this delusional devotion, the woman he was dating wants nothing to do with him. In fact, she hates him so much that she actually ripped the brakes out of his car.
Here we arrive at the flawed thought process of Mr. Mars. In between verses about catching explosives for this woman, Bruno calls her “bad” and tells her to say “hey” to Satan for him when she gets back home. (Note: There is no evidence to support his statement that she lives in Hell.)
If a girl is so mean that she rips the brakes out of your car and people regularly throw grenades at her, maybe it’s time to find a new girlfriend to “die for.”
I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles), The Proclaimers
The Proclaimers live up to their name in this song, claiming they (or one of them) would walk “500 miles” and then “500 more,” just to be “known as the men who walked 1000 miles” and then passed out on some girl’s door. I’m not sure what walking 1000 miles proves to this woman, but I certainly hope they didn’t do it when they released the song in 1988. If you were to walk a thousand miles, which is halfway across the entire United States, it would take months, a lot of money, and a myriad of supplies. The planning needed would be extensive and the journey would last nearly 200 days if you stopped to eat and sleep. Assuming you aren’t rich (and The Proclaimers weren’t), your unexplained absence from work for half a year would probably get you fired and I can’t imagine your girlfriend would be happy that you left her alone for months just to prove a point that you would walk aimlessly for 1000 miles simply to show how dedicated you are to her.
The Proclaimers make a lot more outlandish claims throughout the song and eventually just start making “da da daah” noises when they run out of ludicrous statements that show their devotion. Perhaps if The Proclaimers weren’t so busy finding new ways to please their women, they would have found the time to write another hit song.
(I Just) Died In Your Arms, Cutting Crew
Cutting Crew’s Nick Van Eede has found a way to cheat death. In this song, he dies all over the place, but always in somebody’s arms. In the first verse he reads a girl’s diary as “broken hearts lie all around” him. He’s pretty ashamed about what he’s doing (it’s not nice to read someone else’s diary) and closes the curtains. Apparently, the shock of reading what this girl wrote makes him fall into her arms (she’s there?). Then she says something and that kills him.
However, it doesn’t stop there. By some form of witchery, Van Eede rises from the dead to do it all again. When he learns that his girl is “loving by proxy” with “no give and all take” he falls into her arms again, dies, and this time blames it on a kiss. Later, we learn he’s back again and just had a long hot night, but now the moment is gone. Then he’s in her arms and dies yet again.
So, piecing this together, we have a guy who had a mission. He found a girl that would sleep with him, but then fell in love with her and died in her arms when he found out that she didn’t love him. Hmm.
The Man Who Can’t Be Moved, The Script
Those with broken hearts may want to avoid listening to The Script. In this hit, a man is dumped by a girl so he “travels back to the corner” where he first saw her, with a sleeping bag, some words on cardboard, and her picture in his hand. Like a begger, he desperately asks everyone who passes by if they’ve seen his ex-girlfriend around. Yep, he just sits there and waits – -not a great plan. If he was smart (he’s not), he would ask The Rolling Stones. At least Mick Jagger will walk around New York to find out if anybody’s seen his baby. Hell, he’ll even “call her a thousand times.” The Script make no such calls.
Instead of contacting her, this guy plans on sitting on that corner for so long that he’ll become famous as “the man who can’t be moved.” He hopes that one day she’ll wake up and miss him, come back to the place where they first met (where he’s now living), and they’ll both live happily ever after. Wow…
We can only hope she shows up on one of the days when he showers in the bird bath across the street.
As Long As You Love Me, Backstreet Boys
The Backstreet Boys are willing to date anyone as long as she or he loves them. They don’t care who you are, where you’re from, or what you did, as long as you love them. (Roy Orbison made a similarly grand promise.) What if she’s an axe murderer who can’t stop the killing? What if she looks like Justin Bieber? There are a lot of very plausible scenarios where a few questions could save the Backstreet Boys a lot of problems. However, I can’t say that they haven’t lived up to the song. One of the group’s members did date Paris Hilton. It would take a vow of dedication to talk to that every day.
If You’re Into It, Flight of the Conchords
Tired of impractical lyrics? Well, the Flight of the Conchords have written the most do-able song I’ve ever heard. This extended scene shows Bret writing a tune about how he’d do things like climb the highest mountain, swim the deepest ocean, solve the hardest puzzle, race the fastest animal, and eat the biggest meal for a girl named Coco. However, Jermaine quickly helps him revise the song into something far more honest.
The list goes on…
I think you get the point, but if you want to check out a few more ridiculous, and somewhat disturbing, love songs, check out the following.
- Truly Madly Deeply, Savage Garden (see also: Savage Garden’s entire catalog)
- Two Steps Behind, Def Leppard
- Right Here Waiting, Richard Marx
- Every Breath You Take, The Police
- I Swear, All-4-One
- I Would Do Anything For Love, Meat Loaf
- Said I Loved You…But I Lied, Michael Bolton