The title is a quote from the 2003 song “Everybody’s Fool,” by Evanescence.
Another song from this album was much more well-known than this one, and as I’ve written before, that other song led to a bonding experience between me and one of my students that year who really turned her grades around after that. But now, after a couple years of listening to that album and a lot more years of hearing songs from it pop up when I have my music on shuffle, I think that Everybody’s Fool has definitely emerged as my favorite on the album… although I don’t know that it matters at this point.
Anyway, the video depicts the character that Amy is portraying filming commercials in a variety of costumes that look very little like her real self, alternating with her real self struggling to come to terms with these fake images that she is known for. Amy wrote the song as a teenager, after her younger sister began following teen pop idol type singers who use their fake images to sell music. I don’t claim to be an authority on the meaning of lyrics written by someone else, but in these lyrics, the character appears to be singing to her fake self in the second person.
I’ve been there. I’ve tried to be something I’m not, I’ve been tempted to be someone I’m not, and it never leads to good in the long run. But the lyrics also resonate with me on a more literal sense, as if I could sing them to someone else other than myself. I could just as easily be saying this to all the so-called “friends” I’ve had over the years who aren’t at all the people I thought they were when I first met them, who are constantly trying to be someone they’re not. Or I could be saying this to all the misconceptions I’ve had about what life should be like, all the pieces that were supposed to fall into place in the magical fantasy land that I was told I would be living in.
It never was and never will be.
You’re not real and you can’t save me.