Say, "Show me the dead stars, All of them sing"
Celebritarian.com was the first step and public display of the concept of Manson's Celebritarianism. It very ambiguously viewed as a hidden Manson site but there were a number of parallels which would allude to it as being Manson's. For example, the pistol used in the opening movie sequence is identical to one of the pistols used on Manson's gun crucifix on the cover of Holy Wood the novel; there are a number of thematic references in the questionnaire including references to Kennedy; and although launched in circa the release of Holy Wood the web counter's starting year is 1996, the same year as the release of Antichrist Svperstar, year one of the Triptych of Antichrist Svperstar, Mechanical Animals and Holy Wood (In The Shadow Of The Valley Of Death). However the first public and emphatic clue to Manson's ties to Celebritarian.com was revealed during his highly controversial return to Denver in 2001, his first performance in Colorado since Columbine. Inspired by numerous death and bomb threats, Manson promised this performance to be his most violent while balancing his show with selected readings from the Bible which told of murder, death, sex and pestilence. It was during this Bible reading that Manson quoted from PSALM 137:9, which is the message received after submittal of the questionnaire from Celebritarian.com.
|JAMES DEAN||LEE HARVEY OSWALD||POPE JOHN PAUL II||ALEISTER CROWLEY|
The site was hinted at in the lyrics to Holy Wood in the song The Fall Of Adam in which the term was used which Manson coined. And what brought specific attention towards it was in the liner notes which reads "Celebritarian ™ used by permission". It was later revealed that Manson himself coined and trademarked both the terms 'Celebritarian' and 'Celebritarianism'.
|PRINCESS DIANA||V.I. LENIN||ELVIS PRESLEY||MAHATMA GANDHI|
This concept echoed the performance during the prior year in the first half of the Guns, God & Government tour where Manson performed the song Valentine's Day (See Valentine's Day on The NACHTKABARETT) kneeling at an altar which held bald sculptures of his head on either end, whilst hanging from both sides of the stage where tapestry bearing the likenesses of many of the same celebrities who have become as much if not more revered in death than in life. Such it is when in death one can make the headlines of the papers but in life is forgotten, used up and discarded.
|ADOLF HITLER||FRANK SINATRA||JACKIE KENNEDY||JOHN LENNON|
Within the opening movie the faces of the dead stars that are seen were also shown on the large screen behind Manson during the live performance of The Death Song on the Ozzfest portion of the Guns, God & Government tour; the likes of which are seen lining this article, taken directly from the Guns, God & Government tour DVD.
|ABRAHAM LINCOLN||MARTIN LUTHER KING|
Celebritarianism and many of the conceptual elements within Holy Wood were hinted at particularly in the song 'Posthuman' on Manson's previous album, 'Mechanical Animals'. It painted lyrical visuals of the composite reality Manson satirized where violence is the religion of the masses and the patron saints are dead stars. Where dying on camera makes one a star. It's the idea and reality that in death we're remembered much more profoundly than we were in life. And if famous and are killed in the spotlight it acts as a Christ-like immortalization, just as in the case of JFK and John Lennon. This is the meaning behind Celebritarian / Celebritarianism, that our religion is based on death; echoed by the precepts and rituals of Christianity (Manson's number one indictment as the purveyor of this morbid fascination) where we drink the blood in the form of wine and whose body we feed upon in the form of a communion wafer; the devouring of celebrity as set by precedent of the first celebrity, Jesus Christ.
The word itself, Celebritarian and Celebritarianism at base can accurately be defined by the literal play on words, much like vegetarian, the worship and subsequent devouring of celebrities which if anything has exponentially increased in recent years via satellite tv, the internet and the "CELEBREALITY" phenomenon courtesy of VH1.
Behold the Lamb Of God which taketh away the sins of the world.St. John 1:29
The left is first image added to the MarilynManson.com sister site TheLambOfGod.com in the Summer of 2000 prior to the release of Holy Wood. It is a depiction of Christ as the Lamb of God, painted by Jan Van Eyck in 1432, standing atop an altar and bleeding from a chest wound into a chalice to be consumed by his disciples during Communion. For complete background information on the site and its purpose, see: The Lamb Of God .com on The NACHTKABARETT, but at base the site was launched as an esoteric gateway, revealing in obscure images the several pillars which Holy Wood embodied. The crux of which centered dually on rebirth / transformation along with death and martyrdom.
The New Testament refers to Christ as The Lamb Of God, the sacrificial offering which God sent down to Earth to take away the sins of the world. It illustrates the most prominent theme within Holy Wood of celebrity and martyrdom, and most specifically celebrity through death and martyrdom as represented through Christ, JFK, John Lennon and many others. This being the theme that Holy Wood consistently revolves around illustrating the morbid fascination inherently felt from our primordial state to mankind today. Hence the lamb bleeding into the grail. To reiterate, the blood of Christ which is drunk and whose body is then eaten as a communion wafer; the devouring of celebrity and in the context of religion demonstrated by the first celebrity, Jesus Christ.
This particular image is a detail of the centerpiece of the painting 'Adoration Of The Lamb' by the 15th century Northern Renaissance painter Jan Van Eyck, which in itself is the lower-center panel of the much larger polyptych, The Ghent Alterpiece. The inscription on the alter reads, ECCE AGNUS DEI, QUI TOLLIT PEC(CA)TA MV(N)DI, or the Latin translation of St. John quoted above.
METAL EDGE: How do you see Kennedy as a Christ figure?
MARILYN MANSON: First of all, my theory that I've really been thinking about since I had so much interaction with Christianity after doing 'Antichrist Svperstar', is that Christ was the blue-print for celebrity. He was the first celebrity, or rock star if you want to look at it that way, and he became this image of sexuality and suffering. He's literally marketed - a crucifix is no different than a concert shirt in some ways. I think for America, in my lifetime, John F. Kennedy kind of took the place of that in some ways. He became lifted up as this icon and this Christ figure. I started to, in my weird drugged version of Hollywood, dream up a world where these dead stars are really saints. Jackie O[nassis] is kind of like Mary Immaculate. That's what I was thinking when I was writing the album, and I hinted that in a lot of song like 'Posthuman'.
The story was something that I had in my head, and that's where the songs came from. As the songs came to life the story kind of grew also. It's all really a metaphor for my own life, but the story, without giving away too much, takes place in an alternate dystopia of Hollywood where everything is taken to the extreme. It's sort of Andy Warhol's worst nightmare, combined with Scientology and communism. If you imagined everything was as far as anyone can take it, the way the movie stars are treated. There are a lot of references to the way that I see John F. Kennedy as a modern day Christ and how religion kind of sprouts from that. It's really a strange story, but in the end it's a parable about fame and love and what matters to you the most, but I can't say it's got a happy ending. The video for 'Coma White' is adapted from my script, so it will be a bit of a teaser, a hint at what people can expect... Though I'm sure they won't understand it or make it any clearer.Metal Edge, July 1999 'Marilyn Manson - Revelations of an Alien-Messiah'
Andy Warhol 'Self Portrait With Skull.' 1978 (Contribution from Gilles R. Maurice) and Manson's masthead of the Celebritarian Corporation. An allusion by Manson which is yet another Warholian reference with 2006's resurrection of Celebritarianism.
Displayed below is a cascading photo montage Manson's portrait repeated in the signature Warhol pattern as was done to other celebrity icon's such as Marilyn Monroe. This image montage was used as a site map on MarilynManson.com circa late 2006 and also made an appearance on a t-shirt released slightly earlier that year.
An apropos allusion made by Manson, as a literal play on the 'celebrity' aspect of Celebritarianism being that Andy Warhol had championed the concept of celebrity iconography and worship.
"We applaud the creation of a bomb whose sole purpose is to destroy all of mankind, and we grow up watching our president's brains splattered all over Texas. Times have not become more violent. They have just become more televised. Does anyone think the Civil War was the least bit civil? If television had existed, you could be sure they would have been there to cover it, or maybe even participate in it, like their violent car chase of Princess Di. Disgusting vultures looking for corpses, exploiting, fucking, filming and serving it up for our hungry appetites in a gluttonous display of endless human stupidity."'Columbine: Whose Fault Is It?' Marilyn Manson.
Essay published in Rolling Stone, June 1999.
Princess Diana and her tragic death on August 31, 1997. The beloved philanthropist and humanitarian whose fatal car crash was caused by relentless paparazzi photographers in a high speed chase attempting to capture new photos of the Princess and her new lover for the tabloid press.
As her dying body was strewn about the fiery wreckage the photographers stood firmly, not with mouths agape in horror, but instead taking endless photos of the accident in hopes to score the largest payoff by the tabloids for exclusive photos. Additionally thus blocking critical lifesaving paramedics from reaching her in time to save her life.
The tragedy was fueled, of course, by the insatiably overwhelming public demand for the voyeuristic glimpse into celebrity life. There would otherwise have been no photographers present to stalk Diana and cause her death had the 'celebrity consuming' public not driven the demand by being so perpetually obsessed by fame and the images of those who are famous.
"Flies are waiting..."Cruci-fiction In Space and Valentine's Day from Holy Wood
Metaphorical illustration of the mantra repeated throughout Holy Wood. The "flies" await the death of the celebrity whom they idolize and then consume their carcass wholly. Only to regurgitate it back into an icon of commercialization as the devouring and marketing of their image continues, in a sense giving them eternal life.
Just as was done to Christ in the form of the crucifix and the images of each of the martyred Catholic saints; who were all viewed as "celebrities" of a sort in their own time periods.
For more on the conceptual significance of Celebritarian and Celebritarianism as well as its relation to Holy Wood & The Triptych, see the following sections of The NACHTKABARETT:
|THE LAMB OF GOD .COM||KENNEDY: KING KILL 33°||THE DOUBLE CROSS||VALENTINE'S DAY|