Preface:This whole (strange) post came about through a conversation I’d had with a friend, Philippa, about how I don’t actually listen to lyrics combined with my sister’s love/hate relationship with Britney’s musical offerings. When I set out to write this post I had it was planned to be a somewhat satirical aloof take on Britney Spears’ *cough* masterpiece *cough* “Circus”. What it turned in to was a rather surreal story of world domination that would have you thinking I was tripping on acid when in actual fact it turned out my sugar levels were low and to be honest I don’t actually remember writing half of what I did now reading it back. Regardless here it is, a lyrical analysis of Britney Spears’ “Circus” (whilst low on sugar).
Before we begin, for those of you that have no idea what song it is that I’m talking about feel free to jump over to YouTube and check it out. Once you’re done vomiting come back and continue reading… Oh and don’t worry I’m not about to go through the whole song, it’s surprisingly not that insightful!!! I know, hard to believe!
There's only two types of people in the world
The ones that entertain and the ones that observe
Well baby, I'm a put-on-a-show kind of girl
Don't like the backseat, gotta be first
This is actually quite deep for Britney. She’s successfully divided the world’s 6.7 billion strong population into a distinct cross section clearly garnered from years of research with organizations such as the United Nations and Screen Actors Guild. Now that the world has been completely split in to two equally diverse categories it will calm down so that those that “observe” can watch those that “entertain” and we’ll all live in happy bliss. The only problem I can see in her theory of world peace is that just as she states “gotta be first” I fear a great deal of those living in the now secular society of “ones that entertain” will also feel the same way and quite quickly a civil feud may erupt, the next thing you know there’s hair, silicone & Prada bloodied and strewn across the streets of this new world. It’s actually quite apocalyptic for little old Brit’s.
I'm a like the ringleader, I call the shots
(Call the shots)
I'm like a firecracker I make it hot
When I put on a show
There’s not quite as much hidden in the next verse. Following on from the division of the world Britney has declared “Spears-Law” and emerged from the uprising as the new lord of “Princess-Land” as she’s named the US, which now holds the remaining population of “entertainers” post civil war. Britney rules over Princess-Land with fear tactics, promising that any of those who dare rise in opposition will feel the “firecracker” of justice and burn as she “make(s) it hot” for those that disobey. The rest of the world will watch in pale terror “When [she] puts on a show”
I feel the adrenaline moving through my veins
Spotlight on me and I'm ready to break
I'm like a performer, the dancefloor is my stage
Better be ready, hope that you feel the same
The pressures of ruling Princess-Land are beginning to take toll on poor Britney. Her rule is in jeopardy and with each adrenaline fueled strike she takes to topple the constant attempts to remove her as Queen she’s left alone, constantly in the spotlight of the new nation, “ready to break” under the pressure. Britney is no quitter though, she’s “like a performer”, not an *actual* performer by any means, that would require talent, and the stage is set for a final showdown between her 1984 drone-like followers and her once fellow entertainers, now plebeian subjects, to decide the fate of Princess-Land.
All eyes on me in the center of the ring just like a circus
When I crack that whip, everybody gon' trip just like a circus
Don't stand there watching me, follow me, show me what you can do
Everybody let go, we can make a dancefloor just like a circus
Leading up to the “Final War”, Britney and her cabinet begin a strategic marketing campaign to grab more attention & enlist the people to her and her cause. The “circus” is the unruly terrorist like attacks being employed by her enemy in Princess-Land against her, she stamps her authority over them and her subjects with a crack of “that whip” bringing everyone in to line once again, “Don’t stand there watching me, follow me”, enlisting them to take arms and fight for their ruler, “show me what you can do”.
There's only two types of guys out there
Ones that can hang with me and ones that are scared
So baby, I hope that you came prepared
I run a tight ship so beware
Britney’s efforts at enlisting the people have failed, they’ve turned against her and have been swept up by the underground movement spearheaded by Paris’ dog Tinker-bell, the now smartest living person in all of Princess-Land. Those closest to Britney are given the ultimatum to either come with her in a final stand or die, “There’s only two type of guys out there”. Oddly enough her original move and catalyst for all of this was dividing the world into two, she seems to not have learnt anything, once again dividing her remaining male followers, essentially handing down their death sentence either way.
[Repeated verses & chorus]
Now living underground in a burnt out Krispy Kreme store that fell through the ground in to the sewer system caused, ironically, by one of Britney’s bombings in the early days of the uprising, she begins to slip into a psychotic state still believing she is ruling what she had then labelled “Princess-Land” but is now the United States of Chihuahua with human life eradicated by Supreme Chancellor Tinker-Bell.
Let me see what you can do
I'm runnin' this like-like-like a circus
Yeah, like a what? Like-like-like a circus
Having not eaten for over a week and the decaying bodies of her loyal few rotting around her Britney spends her remaining hours of life rocking; chanting that she’s still running the world albeit a “circus”, her mind completely gone and her childhood stuttering returned “like-like-like”. Her life begins to wain and the song’s continued, seemingly never-ending, verse repetition signifies her dying moments in the cold shell of the Krispy Kreme bunker grave she dug for herself. From the highest of highs to lowest of lows her Circus of rule comes to a sad end and Chancellor Tinker-Bell restores the nation to pre Princess-Land glory.
All hail Tinker-Bell!