Music: Scissor Sisters

From left to right: Paddy Boom, Jake Shears, Ana Matronic, Del Marquis, Babydaddy

"Spawned by the scuzzy, gay nightlife scene of New York", Scissor Sisters crashed onto the music scene in the mid-‘00s. They became one of the most popular pop acts of the decade, especially in the UK. Their self-titled album was (as of 2006) the 10th biggest-selling album of the 21st century, making them stick out like a sore thumb among other (mainstream) artists who sold similar amounts of albums. Celeb fans include Lady Gaga, Thom Yorke, Josh Homme, Elton John, David Gilmour, Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend.

The band's name comes from a popular lesbian sex act. They are known for their sexually-charged lyrics and campy performances, many of which have Jake Shears perfuming in revealing clothes (if any at all).

  • Jake Shears – vocals, piano, guitar
  • Babydaddy – bass guitar, keyboards, vocals, rhythm
  • Ana Matronic – vocals, "Mistress of Ceremonies", percussion, keyboards
  • Del Marquis – lead, bass guitar
  • Randy Real – drums, electronic drums, percussion
  • Paddy Boom – drums, electronic drums, percussion (former member)

The only straight members are/were Ana & Paddy Boom. Randy Real's (Paddy's replacement) sexuality has yet to be disclosed.


Tropes related to this band:

  • Animated Music Video: The second-half of the video for "Mary" is an animated retelling of "Rapunzel," created by none other than Don Bluth!
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: From "Any Which Way."
    "Take me any way you can: in front of the fire place, in front of your yacht, in front of my parents! I don't give a damn, baby, just take me!"
  • Buried Alive: Referenced in "I Can't Decide" (where what can't be decided is "whether you should live or die"): "Or I could bury you alive / But you might crawl out with a knife / And kill me when I'm sleeping".
  • Censored for Comedy: The radio edit of "Filthy/Gorgeous" bleeped the word "acid" (as in LSD)... but only the second syllable, which made it sound really... uh, filthy. "Trip on a hit of ass" indeed.
  • Chiaroscuro: The front cover for Ta-Dah.
  • The Cover Changes The Meaning: Their not universally loved cover of the Pink Floyd classic "Comfortably Numb" brings out a different facet. The original is overflowing with angst, about someone who can't quite get numb enough. The remake sounds like someone who really has been medicated into oblivion, to the point of losing both their neuroses and their identity, and is loving every minute of it.
  • Downer Ending: Their first album (the non-UK version) ends with "Return To Oz", a song about drug use in the gay community.
  • Dream Team: Elton John co-wrote and played piano on "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'".
    • Lady Gaga chose them to open for part of the 2011 North American Leg of the Monster Ball Tour.
    • Don Bluth doing the animation for the "Mary" video.
  • Every Episode Ending: Their first two albums ended with one song completely devoid of synths and drum loops. However, after Paddy Boom left and the band started doing out-and-out techno, this was dropped.
  • Fag Hag: Ana could be considered one, as she's the lone straight female in a band consisting almost entirely of openly gay men.
  • Fanservice: In-universe: "Filthy/Gorgeous" is about a woman (or possibly not) who goes to a sex club and is transformed into a dancer/stripper (with hula hoops). It contains, it is not much of an exaggeration to say, every fetish there is, including pregnancy, toe sex, smoking, armpits, blow-up dolls, leather, vinyl, adult babies, pony play, men kissing, boobs galore, drag queens, the biggest hair in the world, bears... a little something for everyone. Try guessing the original or true gender of everyone who appears.
    • The animated segment of "Mary" has the male protagonist at one point strip down to his underwear.
    • The guy's ass adorning the cover of Night Work.
    • Jake himself has been known to strip almost completely naked during concerts if they venue gets too hot.
  • Get Back in the Closet: Not surprisingly, Wal-Mart refuses to sell their CDs because of their overtly homoerotic lyrics and openly Gay band members.
  • Intentionally Awkward Title: Just try being the one to introduce this band to a lesbian. Or someone who's squeamish about innuendo, although such a person probably won't be their biggest fan anyway. Worse yet, their original name (as part of an arms race of escalating vulgarity) was "Dead Lesbian and the Fibrillating Scissor Sisters."
  • Intercourse with You: Oh boy, this has got to be their favorite trope. Emphasis on "boy."
  • In the Style of...: The disco cover of Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb", which got mixed reactions from Floyd fans — while some considered it a butchering of the work, others find that the disco beat fits the song's lyrics pretty well.
  • I Was Young and Needed the Money: Jake was a stripper around the time the band formed.
  • Love Hurts: "Better Luck Next Time"
  • Lyrical Dissonance: "I Can't Decide", made famous to geeks everywhere by its use in Doctor Who, is an excellent example. The bouncy, upbeat song's chorus actually starts, "I can't decide whether you should live or die..." and the middle eight describes various methods of murder.
  • New Sound Album: Their first album was on the edge between "band" music (i.e., mostly live instrumentation) and dance pop, with their second moving much more towards the former with the addition of drummer Paddy Boom. Once he left, however, the band made a stylistic U-turn with the electroclash-heavy "Night Work", eventually doing straight-up dance pop on "Magic Hour."
  • Non-Indicative Name: Scissor Sisters contains no lesbians, siblings or scissors. And only one woman.
    • And their song "Paul McCartney" isn't really about Paul McCartney.note 
  • Older Than They Look: Jake is 34. He could pass for being in university.
  • One Woman Song: "Laura" and "Mary".
  • Punny Name: Ana Matronic.
  • Rearrange the Song: "Comfortably Numb" disco-fied.
  • Smurfette Principle: Ana is the lone girl of the quintet.
  • Soprano and Gravel
  • Shout-Out: Don Bluth's animated segment of their "Mary" video is one to his own "Don't Walk Away" segment from Xanadu, which the band are huge fans of.
  • Spoken Word in Music: "Let's Have A Kiki."
  • Staying Alive: "I Can't Decide".
    Oh I could throw you in the lake / Or feed you poisoned birthday cake / I won’t deny I'm gonna miss you when you're gone / Oh I could bury you alive / But you might crawl out with a knife / And kill me when I'm sleeping / That's why / I can't decide / Whether you should live or die...
  • Straight Gay: Babydaddy.
  • Unusual Euphemism: "Skin This Cat" is about an umm...special male body part. That or perhaps a special female body part.