Bullet

Album: The Misfits (1986)
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Songfacts®:

  • This song is a perverted commentary on the assassination of US president John F. Kennedy:

    President's bullet ridden body in the street
    Ride Johnny ride
    Kennedy's shattered head hits concrete
    Ride Johnny ride


    The lyrics are mainly about masturbation and sex with Kennedy's wife ("Jackie-O"). >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Mason - Round Rock, TX
  • While the Misfits are widely known for their somewhat campy and over-the-top brand of horror punk, their second single, "Bullet," reveals a darkness to the band outside of the usual monsters and boogeymen. The song, released as a four-track single accompanied by "We Are 138" with "Attitude" and "Hollywood Babylon" on the flip side, puts a perverse spin on the death of an American icon, John F. Kennedy. Going into rather gruesome detail about the shooting of Kennedy in the midst of his motorcade, the song then diverges into a fantasy about his fresh widow, Jacqueline Kennedy.

    In the song, the Misfits refer to her as Jackie O., a nickname she acquired in the media after marrying shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis in 1968, and use lyrics that were especially explicit for the time as they describe their wishes for her.

    Not surprisingly, the Misfits had a hard time finding a label to release the album, and ended up releasing it on frontman Glenn Danzig's own label, Plan 9 records. Despite the lyrics that were cutting-edge for their time, "Bullet" quickly became a cult favorite, and has been hailed by some as an apt allegory for the kind of hero worship the United States has for its political leaders, and the roles women play behind the scenes.

Comments: 5

  • Bryan from Los Angeles, CaThis song is calling out Kennedy's widow as a whore who married Aristotle Onassis simply for his money. It's got nothing to do with the assassination.
  • Dougi from Massachusetts, MaThe second half of the song, begining with the line "Arise Jackie-O", is a reference to her name after she married Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis. "Jackie-O" as would be affectionately referred to by the press until her death in '94.
    "It's about Jackie being "raped" by the system."?
    No, It's about her accepting the proposal of another wealthy and powerful man to protect her. And it's Danzigs interpretation of what that relationship must have been like. "My cum be your life source and the only way to get it is to suck or f--k or be poor and devoid..."
  • Elliot from Ny, NyTo say that this song is just a "perverted commentary on the assassination of US president John F. Kennedy" is incredibly closed minded. It's obviously about the supposed assassination conspiracy by Texas Conservatives to get Lyndon B Johnson into office.("Texas is the reason") The end of the song (the part with sex)is a metaphor. Something you would recognize if you passed 7th grade English. Its about Jackie being "raped" by the system. The system that has stolen her husband and is now going to use and abuse her.
  • Bmg from Detroit, MiGlenn Danzig clearly loves Marlyn Monroe, his first solo record is about her in addition to the band being named after her last film. According to the lyrics of that record, "Who Killed Marilyn?", he believes she was murdered by the Kennedy clan. This is something he cannot forgive, for Marilyn was the icon of the mysterious and beguiling yet tragically misunderstood. So he isn't one of the people disillusioned by JFK's assassination, and in classic punk fashion, he sure is glad that you are. But at the same time, he wants to see the Kennedy's suffer. So in playing with this iconic American moment Glenn equates the famous Zapruder film image of the back of JFK's flying off, looking like it's exploding, with his own climax, to be delivered by Jackie-O. Shocking now, but imagine on its release in 1978! A revenge fantasy.
  • Dylan from Olmsted Falls, United StatesMessed up, but good song:)
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