Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now)

Album: Hits (1984)
Charted: 2 1
  • How can I just let you walk away,
    Just let you leave without a trace?
    When I stand here taking every breath with you, ooh ooh
    You're the only one who really knew me at all

    How can you just walk away from me
    When all I can do is watch you leave?
    'Cause we've shared the laughter and the pain
    And even shared the tears
    You're the only one who really knew me at all

    So take a look at me now
    Well there's just an empty space
    And there's nothing left here to remind me
    Just the memory of your face
    Ooh, Take a look at me now
    Well there's just an empty space
    And you coming back to me is against the odds
    And that's what I've got to face,

    I wish I could just make you turn around
    Turn around and see me cry
    There's so much I need to say to you
    So many reasons why
    You're the only one who really knew me at all

    So take a look at me now
    Well there's just an empty space
    And there's nothing left here to remind me
    Just the memory of your face

    Now Take a look at me now
    'Cause that's just an empty space
    But to wait for you is all I can do
    And that's what I've got to face

    Take a good look at me now
    'Cause I'll still be standing here
    And you coming back to me is against all odds
    It's the chance I've got to take
    Take a look at me now Writer/s: Phillip David Charles Collins
    Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, CONCORD MUSIC PUBLISHING LLC
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 24

  • Howard from St. Louis Park, Mn Along with Sussudio, Against All Odds is one of my all-time favorite Phil Collins songs. He wrote the song after he went through a divorce and to me, it's a song who has experienced a loss in their lives can identify with. Whether it's a divorce or death, Collins puts his feelings into the song and the line "Take a look at me now" best describes the image of heartbreak and loss. Personally, it's a song I can relate to since on January 9, 2019, my longtime girlfriend Julia passed away from bile duct cancer and though some parts don't relate to the tragedy, the line "there's just an empty space" is the description of a hole in my life after her passing. An 80s classic.
  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenThe song "You Know What I Mean" (mentioned above) was released on Frida (ABBA) Lyngstad's terrific solo album "Something's Going On," which Collins produced and played drums on. He also sang a duet with her on the final track ("Here We'll Stay"). Frida did a great job on "You Know What I Mean."
  • Siahara Shyne Carter from United StatesThat's why his voice sounds familiar, This was also his song! I knew it. ;)
  • Andrea from Australia OMG!!! Such a sad sad song I feel guilty for loving it so much. It always makes me cry. Knowing this man has lost the love of his life is so sad but Phil Collins sings it with such emotion, and I ALWAYS end up crying
  • Markantney from BiloxeMay 18,

    How Great is this song? It almost saved that dumb movie when it's played at the end:):). Great, Great,..song.
  • Eduardo Hdz. from MexicoThe perfect track to hold on to when you lost someone; not only a lover, could be your mother, your brother, your friend or even your dog. This song makes you feel like taking a chance to beat the odds and reach to that person at least on an emotional level. Thank you for making us believe Phil.?

    What I love about the lyric is how realistic and straight it is. There's no easy and cliché phrases. Instead of saying: "I love you", he says: "You're the only one who really knew me at all". Much deeper meaning, doesn't it? I never thought of the "empty space" as what he feels inside, I think he refers to actually the empty space you see around a person who is alone. "And you coming back to me is against the odds, and that's what I've got to face", see? No corny lines involved again. Probably my favorite part of the track is the second verse. The backing vocals are amazing. I'm hooked on the phrase: "There's so much I need to say to you", it's fantastic; just think about it, how many things we keep inside when we lost someone? how many things come to mind just after that person is gone? Many, many things we have to keep to ourselves trying not to be hurt constantly by them. "But to wait for you is all I can do and that's what I've got to face", yeah, there's nothing we can do but have faith in a possibility to be together again. "Take a good look at me now, 'cause I'll still be standing here". A realistic touch again, 'cause no matter who left us, we still have to live on, and that's the hardest part. We'll still be here, missing someone, but here, alive. "And you coming back to me is against all odds, it's the chance I've got to take", kinda happy ending for the song, you just need to feel the hope that somehow it all can be like it was when he/she was here.
  • Shandroise De Laeken from Davao City, PhilippinesI agree much with the comments of everyone here who said why this song is superbly brilliant. This is Phil Collins' greatest song in my opinion. I don't think the covers of this will ever match his original. Even when I was younger and didn't understand what this song meant, I can already feel that there is something deep inside him where he pulls out the emotions he expresses in his voice throughout this song. When I finally understood the meaning of this song, the more I appreciated it, and I always do. This is one very genuinely heartfelt singing. Knowing now what made him write this makes me pity him. His first wife hurt him a lot. She inspired him to write many songs. Didn't she feel anything when she heard his songs for her overplayed in the radio?

    This is also soo great to sing in the house when alone so that no one can hear whenever your voice cracks in the emotionally screamed last lines! I also love the quiet ending, the pleading... "Take a look at me now~" This song is truly awesome!! Classic!!
    (08-11-2015)
  • Terry from Grafon, WiThis song is heartbreaking. How many of us have been there? You get hurt, and you just want them to turn around and see you cry, see what they've done to you. But somehow, you rise above the ashes and you want them to take a look at you now. It's truly powerful.
  • Camille from Toronto, OhThe way this song is written easily lends itself to a visual picture of what the words are saying. Most of us have walked in this person's shoes, asking, begging for that other person to "take a look at me now." Great song.
  • Megan from Stevenson, AlThis is my all time favorite song of Phil Collins. He's an amazing artist! I love the way he screams the lyrics at the end. :) Mmmmm....
  • Jim from Long Beach, CaGreat song. Reminds me about the time I was seeing two girls at the same time,just like the female character in the movie. what did I know I was 20 and thought I knew it all(typical right?..LOL!!)..Anyways this song always brings me back to that time....Just saw the movie the other night, It wasn't as good as i liked it back then..go figure..
  • Brian from Boston, MaThe thing I remember most about this song is that it was nominated for an academy award and it lost to a Stevie Wonder song I think it was I just called to say I love you.Are you kidding me? no seriously are you kidding me?
  • Aimee from Renton, WaThis song was originally titled "How Can You Just Sit There?" and was from the sessions for his debut album Face Value (1981).

    Barry Manilow has also covered this song.
  • Jeff from Casa Grande, AzWhen Phil says, "take a look at me," he says afterwards one of two lines. He talks alot about there being nothing but an empty space. But, once, at the end, he says "I'll still be standing here."
    What a statement for "hope." He can't let go. What a statement of "devotion." His feelings aren't going anywhere. My god, I can feel the desperation in his words and voice and music. His cry for help. Magnanimous! Spot on drums. Copacetic piano playing. A unique capturing of a broken heart. But, of all that, the single line he repeats is incredibly powerful; and that is "you're the only one who really knew me at all." He's lost a friend. And, there's nothing he can do to stop her from going away. Except to wait . . . One of the Greatest songs of all time.
  • Aubrey from Pittsburgh, PaThe Postal Service also does a cover of this song on the Wicker Park Soundtrack.
  • Sara from Silver Spring, MdActually the reason Phil Collins didn't perform at the Oscars was because the writers and producers (including Gregory Peck) had never heard of him. They allowed Christopher Cross to perform "Arthur's Theme" though...
  • Sara from Silver Spring, MdI don't think that rule is true. Christopher Cross sang "Arthur's Theme" (Best That You Can Do) at the Oscars. Two years later Peter Cetera sang it.
  • Sara from Silver Spring, MdNot only did Ann Reinking sing Against All Odds but Debbie Allen did Footloose! I just wanted to let you know. Actually the reason he didn't sing it was because the producers (including Gregory Peck) and writer Larry Gelbart never heard of him.
  • Kate from Wakefield, MaI'm not much of a Phil Collins fan, but I love this song. It's quite lovely, but sad too.
  • Vaibhav from Shahjahanpurthis is one of my all time favourites. specially the starting music of the song is the real delight and of course who can forget the unmatchable singing of collins.
  • Jason from Dublin, Irelandi know too many people criticise and unfortunately for them hate phil collins but this song proves phil collins is one of the greatest singers and songwriters of all time and i believe this song is considered by many as a classic and will always be considered so. how many of his haters they can say they created a classic piece of art?
  • Garrett from Nashville, TnThe best/worst part of the Oscar fiasco was that they kept showing Phil Collins in the audience, who was visibly wincing at the way Reinking was demolishing his song.
    Good TV.
  • David from Los Angeles, CaNominated for Best Song at the 1984 Academy Awards. Phil Collins was not permitted to sing it at the awards ceremony because at the time, the Academy rules required that the award show performers had to work in the movies. Ann Reinking sang the song and performed the accompanying dance. She's a perfectly good dancer, but her singing was so awful it caused a huge uproar and the rule was eventually changed. Thus, in 1993, Bruce Springsteen sang "Philadelphia" at the awards show and won the Oscar that night.
  • Andy from Arlington, VaThis song is great. The movie, not so much.
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