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YMMV / Fiona Apple

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  • Awesome Music: Pretty much all of it. Paper Bag, Criminal, Never is a Promise, O'Sailor and Shadowboxer are a few standouts.
  • Broken Bird: Had this reputation early on, though she would poke fun at it.
  • Even Better Sequel: While all her albums have garnered critical acclaim in some form. 2020's Fetch the Bolt Cutters took this Up to Eleven, netting the first "10" from Pitchfork in ten years and scoring an initial rating of 100 on Metacritic.
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  • First Installment Wins: On the other hand, some continue to hold Tidal as her best-regarded and well-known work.
  • Heartwarming Moments: Shameika. Not just the song itself, but the backstory behind it. Apple wrote it about an older girl in primary school who came over to her while she was being excluded by other girls at lunch, and told her she 'had potential'. Although the song says 'I'll never see her again', Apple and Shameika - a musician herself - were in fact reunited via a former teacher, and even teamed up for a collaboration, Shameika Said. This article explains Shameika's side of the story in detail. Apple told one website:
    When I first wrote the song, I was not entirely convinced she existed. Because I have this one memory and it’s a very big memory for me. But maybe I created this person. My third-grade teacher, Linda Kunhart, was my favorite teacher. I’ve kept in touch with her over the years. She read the New Yorker article, and the next day, she sent me an email saying, “I heard you wrote about Shameika. I can see her …” She sent me a picture of her. I don’t remember what grade she was in. I was probably 11 or so. I don’t remember why she was talking to me. I just remember being in the cafeteria, a bunch of girls at one end of the table. I came over to sit with them, and they started laughing at me. So I sat one seat away but still tried to be close to them. Shameika came up, and she was like, “Why are you trying to sit with those girls? You have potential.” That was all she said to me. But I had remembered that maybe she was a bully or something. Then I got sent this picture of her, and she’s so cute — she doesn’t look like a bully at all. She’s just got this big smile on her face. But on the piece of paper that Miss Kunhart sent me, there’s this short essay Shameika had written on the top. And, man, it is amazing. It’s all about how she got put up to do this thing in church, in the service. And everybody was laughing because she was so cute and she messed up words or something. And she was so pissed. She was like, “They used me to bring the people in there, to think it was cute. They used me.” I was like, This little kid realized what the fuck was going on.
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  • Memetic Badass: Officer Barbrady holds her in high regard than Barbra Streisand.
    Barbrady: Well you ain't Fiona Apple and if you ain't Fiona Apple, I don't give a Rat's Ass.
  • Never Live It Down: Her infamous MTV acceptance speech and to a lesser degree her on-stage meltdowns.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Her performance of Elvis Costello's Obsession Song extraordinaire I Want You.
  • Performance Anxiety: Has had some infamous incidents of on-stage meltdowns, at one point screaming at her audience:
  • Signature Song: Criminal remains arguably her most famous song.
  • Tear Jerker: In 2012, because her beloved pitbull Janet was dying, Fiona elected to cancel a string of concerts in South America. Not even her most embittered detractors could hold the tears back once they had finished reading her letter of apology.
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  • Wise Beyond Their Years: Would you ever believe that she created an album as brilliant and mature as Tidal at only eighteen?
  • The Woobie: Being sexually assaulted when she was 12, her issues with Anorexia, OCD and self-harm and the fact that most of her songs about emotional pain come from real-life experiences as well as her overall sweet personality places her quite firmly in this category. She even broke down in tears during an interview.
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