Not ashamed to admit, my wild & crazy Saturday night involved finally getting around to see the movie everyone’s been talking about: Bohemian Rhapsody.
Like most who prob go/have gone into this movie, I was expecting to have a mindless experience, enjoying what I thought would contain a # of key themes:
1) The ridiculously long list of hits Queen’s known for, from: We Are The Champions, to Somebody To Love, to We Will Rock You, to our favorite: Crazy Little Thing Called Love. 2) Freddie’s battle w AIDS at a time when no one knew much about the “scary” virus. 3) The rise to fame from humble beginnings as a group of artists playing at small venues. 4) Life on the road, touring as an iconic rock band.
I absolutely got all of the above, but so much more. I don’t know if I end up hyper-sensitive to mental health themes bc of the work I’m involved in, daily now, where others would pass over it…or if this is some master plan that when you put things out into the universe, these themes/opportunities find you. Regardless, I’m appreciative. What an incredible experience – especially coming off of a post about finding our “tribe” & what that does for our mental health.
As the story starts out, an industry exec who met early on w the band asked why Queen would be different than any other band he’s considered repping. Freddie’s answer was amazing: We’re a bunch of misfits who are a fam bc we recognize our commonality is being a bunch of misfits…& bc of that, we inspire all the misfit fans out there the way no other band can. Wow!
Throughout the movie/Freddie’s life, aside from his comments & feelings towards his band members & fans, was an exercise in the opposite – NOT wanting to fit in: not wanting to acknowledge his family’s roots from India, not wanting to even have much to do w his family, pointing out how the rest of his band members were married w families & he was not, having a difficult time coming to terms w his sexuality not only publicly but w those closest to him & not wanting to identify with a community of others with AIDS.
Because of all the ways he felt he DIDN’T fit in, he made the decision nearing the end of his career to go off & be a solo artist. Besides, the $ was so good.
However what’s beautiful about this story is, he came to realize, he missed his TRIBE. He essentially ended up coming back to the same band members he had ditched for his solo work, asking if he could get back with them…the misfits who fit so well together. He even told them he missed their: re-writes, push-back & funny looks. He NEEDED them. And, he NEEDED his misfit fans that felt like family. Some of the best songs Queen ever produced – were produced specifically to get the FANS to be a PART of the performance: We Will Rock You…We Are The Champions. All about the fans singing & clapping along.
As an individual & now group trying to inspire a movement of inclusion, I couldn’t help but smile & be inspired, that the commonality this band & their followers found, was brought together based on how dissimilar & different & “misfit” we all are. Well if that again can serve as a rallying cry for how we ALL face different challenges – but those different challenges make us ALL the “Crazy” misfits we are – then that acknowledgment of commonality as one tribe would be awesome! #SameHere🤙!