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Back in the Day

When Blackie Lawless "Deflowered" a MARILYN MANSON Mannequin on Stage in 1998

Posted by on December 1, 2019 at 9:37 am

In 1998 an event billed as the "biggest show of the summer," the WASP Rock & Horror Expo 98 took over the Meadowlands Convention Center in Secaucus, New Jersey, on Saturday, August 29th. Things kicked off bright and early (as far as I'm concerned) at 10 am. The Expo featured special guest appearances by Elvira (Cassandra Peterson), autograph sessions with members of Type O Negative, 6'10 professional wrestler The Undertaker (Mark William Calaway), as well as a massive array of action figure toy vendors. Add beer, food, and a show by W.A.S.P. at 6:30 that evening, and you've got a fucking party.

Allegedly, there was a strict "no camera or video" rule in place at the Meadowlands, and in the process of my very important "research" for this 21-year-old story, I have come across only one video of W.A.S.P.'s performance and a couple of random photos we'll get to in a minute. If you know anything about W.A.S.P. or were a fan back in the day, you know how sick their live shows were, and their early show at the Meadowlands was no exception. During the Fuck.Kill.Die. era of the band, the stage show would include Blackie assaulting a mannequin of a nun hanging on a thirteen-foot cross with a knife, then removing a fetus from her body. You know, no big deal. For the Meadowland gig, Lawless changed things up and instead of his nun, brought out a mannequin of Marilyn Manson clad in a black Marilyn Manson shirt and pink tutu–a nod to Manson's attire in the video for "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This"). Lawless brings the Manson mannequin (see it here) out on stage and hangs it by its neck with a noose over his motorcycle handlebar mic stand.

Lawless then proceeds to penetrate the mannequin with a large knife lodged in his buzzsaw codpiece while the buzzsaw sprays sparks during the song "Little Death" from Kill.Fuck.Die.. But wait! There's more! After defiling the Manson mannequin, Lawless then reaches up underneath its pink tutu removing a fake fetus with its umbilical cord still attached, then proceeds to impale the phony fetus with the knife protruding from his crotch. It's kind of a mystery as to why Blackie used Marilyn as his mannequin in Secaucus, but guitarist Chris Holmes kind of shed some light on the situation in 2018 when talking about an album he hated, Kill.Fuck.Die.:

"I really didn't play that much on that (Kill.Fuck.Die.) I played, I think, two solos. I had some influence on a song or two writing lyrics. That album was done because somebody–I won't say his name–was scared of Marilyn Manson taking his spot in rock and roll. It was a really stupid album to do. I hated it."

The only other thing to add to this is an amusing comment attributed to Blackie in 2004. In the interview for Denmark publication Antenna, he is asked for his thoughts on current shock rock, specifically Marilyn Manson. Lawless' response was to claim he'd "never seen" Manson.

You can see Lawless going to town on his Manson mannequin, starting about 40 minutes into the video below. It ain't pretty, and neither is Lawless' sheer black bodysuit–you have been warned!

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Footage of W.A.S.P. set at the WASP Rock & Horror Expo in 1998. The Marilyn Manson mannequin shows up at 40 minutes in.

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