My Chemical Romance Returns: The Long Awaited Celebration
March 22, 2013, was a dark day for the world of music. That was the day that the legendary rock band My Chemical Romance broke up, and the entire world went dark. Fans from every corner of the world were absolutely crushed. My Chemical Romance, also called MCR or just simply My Chem, was around from 2001 to 2013 and released four full-length albums during that time. Over the course of releasing four albums, more and more fans became attached to the band's music. Their debut album I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love (2002) got the band into the spotlight and allowed them to start touring with some major bands. MCR's next two releases Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge (2004) and The Black Parade (2006) made them an international success. The band's last full-length album, Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, was released in 2010, but no one ever expected it to be the last release. Three years later, when the band announced their disbandment, the world started praying for some sort of reunion. After a couple of years, a reunion became more and more unlikely. However, on October 31, 2019, the band reactivated their Twitter account, created an Instagram account, and announced a reunion show in Los Angeles on December 20, 2019. After 6 1/2 years, My Chemical Romance has returned.
The Cryptic Reunion Teaser
The world was shaken up a little bit after the band’s social media accounts were reactivated. Fans started commenting all over social media with “what’s going on?” and the like. Even touring bands in the world of rock music, such as Waterparks and Palaye Royale, were freaking out over the band’s cryptic reawakening. Waterparks announced that if they got tickets to an MCR reunion they would cancel their own show that was happening on that day (you can get tickets to Waterparks’ Chicago date here.)
Around 1:00pm central time, activity began on the band’s Instagram account. Several posts were uploaded with the captions “Clarity,” “Courage,” “Sacrifice,” and “Devotion” along with a fifth one captioned “MCR.” The profile picture for the band on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram was changed to a black candle with the “Clarity” caption previously mentioned.
Amazon Music and the Warner Records’ UK store also announced the reunion. The Warner Records’ UK store had released reunion merchandise before the official announcement by the band, and as a result, the posts were taken down. Twitter created a hashtag with a candle emoji for #MyChemicalRomance, which then caused even more hysteria in the fanbase; a clue that something was definitely in the works.
The Official Reunion Announcement
At 2:00 pm central time, MCR officially posted a picture on Instagram and Twitter with the caption “Like Phantoms Forever… Tickets on Sale Friday 11/1/19 and 12:00 pm Pacific.” The post included a link to buy tickets to a reunion show which will be held on December 20, 2019, in Los Angeles at Shrine Expo Hall. This will be the band’s first show since May 19, 2012. All four band members (Gerard Way – vocals, Frank Iero – guitar, Mikey Way – bass, and Ray Toro – guitar) then posted the same picture on their individual accounts with the caption “California 2019” all around the same time frame.
Over in Los Angeles, there was a Hot Topic event with tickets for the return show, as well as an MCR display to celebrate this epic return and the new era of My Chemical Romance. A rumor also started going around at this time that MCR was going to embark on a world tour following the LA reunion tour, with two confirmed sources from the Ohio-based magazine Alternative Press.
As mentioned previously, reunion tickets were set to go on sale at 12:00 Pacific time on Friday, November 1, 2019. Since the venue has a capacity of 6,300 spectators, obviously it was a madhouse trying to buy tickets that were selling for $150 a piece. Within 2 minutes of the tickets going on sale, the event was completely sold out, with resale tickets going up on websites such as Vivid Seats only minutes later. Those resale tickets had price tags ranging from $1,000 to insane prices like $5,000 and even more. Fans were visibly upset because of the lack of people actually getting tickets (people believed it was mostly ticket scalpers that got tickets for resale purposes).
The band acknowledged the uproar about the reunion over the past two days on their social media pages. At 11:00 pm central time on November 1, 2019, they posted the message “It is truly unbelievable to us the happiness we have experienced over the past two days. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for the warm welcome back. We truly did not expect this. See you soon. Xoxo, MCR.”
Reunion Conspiracy Theories
With such an impact on music, and such a crushing break up, My Chemical Romance fans created many different theories as to why they broke up in the first place and when they would get back together. Firstly, people believed there would be a reunion because, on their Greatest Hits album released in 2014, the last MCR song released was called “Fake Your Death.” Hence why theories were created speculating a reunion in 2019. Believe it or not, the theories created were actually correct. Three big theories started circulating not long after the band broke up, stating they would reunite in 2019, and all three seem to be applicable to their reunion in 2019.
The first of the theories, and the most well known, is what’s called “The Smashing Pumpkins Theory.” Brothers Gerard and Mikey Way, the vocalist and bassist of MCR respectively, realized that they wanted to be in a band after attending a Smashing Pumpkins concert as teenagers. In 2001, Gerard started My Chem after the September 11th attacks, realizing he wanted to make a difference in the world. The brothers had always admired The Smashing Pumpkins and made it clear many times that that was the band they wanted to become. The Smashing Pumpkins were a band for 12 years before breaking up for 6 years and reuniting to play music again. My Chemical Romance broke up in 2013 after 12 years of being a band, so theories speculated that if they were to follow The Smashing Pumpkins, they would reunite in 2019, after a 6-year breakup. Of course, that’s exactly what happened, solidifying the theory.
The second theory is what’s called “The Danger Days Theory.” As previously mentioned, MCR’s last full-length record Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys was released in 2010, but the album and music videos were set in 2019. So the big theory that people came up with was that MCR was going to reunite in 2019 to live “Danger Days” in real-time. Again, since they reunited in 2019, this theory was also correct in a way.
The third and final theory is “The Teenagers Theory.” This theory was created more because it matched with the other two, so the opportunity was there. On My Chem’s third release The Black Parade (2006), there is a song called “Teenagers,” which happens to be one of the bands biggest hits. In the chorus, Gerard Way sings the line “Teenagers scare the living s*** out of me.” My Chemical Romance broke up after 12 years as a band, which is the year before becoming a teenager (13). In 2019, the band would be turning 18 years old, which is when people typically are considered no longer teenagers, but adults. So the theory is that in 2019, they would reunite because they won’t be teenagers, since teenagers are so scary. To reiterate, this theory is again correct!
The Dream Reunion Setlist
After all the conspiracy theories and reunion rumors, the band actually came through to make the rumors and theories a reality. But the real question is, what are they going to play at their reunion? Obviously, we can’t be sure they WON’T play new music, but new music definitely shouldn’t be expected either. MCR will most likely play their big hits, and maybe a couple of older tracks off of Bullets to satisfy fans that have been there from the very beginning. In no particular order, here’s the setlist of songs that I predict they’ll play at their reunion date.
- Welcome to the Black Parade
- Helena (So Long and Good Night)
- Na Na Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)
- I’m Not Okay (I Promise)
- Thank You for the Venom
- Vampires Will Never Hurt You
- Planetary (GO!)
- Famous Last Words
- Give ‘Em Hell, Kid
- Headfirst for Halos
- Vampire Money
- Cemetery Drive
- House of Wolves
At the end of the day, the world is better thanks to the fantastic reunion of the legendary band My Chemical Romance. While we theorized and the band members lived their lives, fans never lost hope that the beloved band would return. Although I am not attending the reunion show, I know I, among everyone else who did not get a reunion ticket, is praying so hard that we get blessed with a world tour. Make sure you keep an eye out for that! In the meantime, go buy or stream IBYMBYBMYL, Three Cheers, The Black Parade, and Danger Days on all your favorite music platforms, and go follow MCR for more updates!
Radio Show: The Daily Blend, Monday 4-6pm
Facebook Page: @TheDailyBlendUIC