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Tales from the Jugular
Queensyche - Who Killed Sister Mary--Solved!
In 1988, Queensryche released the CD that many feel is the apex of their career. Metal
fans went apeshit over the story of a disenchanted young man brainwashed to assassinate
political leaders and his problems with love. 'Operation: mindcrime' has been called one
of the greatest if not THE greatest metal records of all time and all the band's
subsequent releases are still being compared to this masterpiece.
In 1989, MTV's Headbanger's Ball held a "Queensryche - Solve the Mindcrime" contest, asking viewers who killed Mary. Figure it out and you could be one of 7 people to receive a leather tour jacket as a prize. It was said that a clue or answer was in 'Video: mindcrime" the 1989 VHS collection of 9 videos based on the record's songs. I believe that all the answers were revealed in the tape and that by looking at the lyrics, you can tell the basic outline of how it happened.
The setting: In the intro to 'Suite Sister Mary', Nikki has been told by Dr X from his car window to "Kill her. And get the priest as well." In the church, Nikki shoots the molesting priest, Father William, as told in these lines: "The priest is cold and dead on his knees he fed/From my barrel of death, he turned the holy water red", leaving him and Mary together.
From Queensryche's website: "Mary watches in disgust as her lover Nikki's troubled face dissolves into the leering, drooling face of the priest huffing and puffing above her. "...Altar...sacrifice..." something snaps inside her head."
Nikki decides that instead of following his mission to kill her, he sets off to get Dr. X. Sound effects at the end included a large door closing and one loud rim-shot on the drums.
From Queensryche's website: "After Nikki leaves, Mary is plagued by the vision of Nikki turning into Father William. As they made love on the altar, the memories came flooding back. Years filled with men who has used her, degraded and beaten her, and driven their hatred and coldness into her heart. Once, she thought Nikki was her hope. But now he seemed like all the rest. She hated him. She hated men. She hated life."
Nikki returns and finds his lover dead and runs off into the night only to be arrested and charged with crimes (disorderly conduct, carrying a concealed weapon without a license, and resisting arrest) and sent to the State Hospital where he tries to recall the events of what happened. The entire CD is supposed to take place over the course of 1 minute of reflection in Nikki's mind and everything is wrapped with the words "I remember now." completing the circle.
So, who killed her and how?
In an old interview with ex-guitarist Chris Degarmo, he said that for the song 'Electric Requiem', "Nikki comes back to the church and finds Mary dead hanging by her rosary..." and in the song 'Eyes of a Stranger', the lines are written "Every night the dreams return to haunt me/Your rosary wrapped around your throat". This all seems to suggest a choke/hanging, but I don't think so.
If you watch 'Video: mindcrime' all the way through, you get all the same videos that were shown on TV. Then the credits roll and after that a second video version of 'I Don't Believe In Love' is played. Words are images are flashed throughout the accompanying videos showing what could be reality or what could be mental fantasies, but two scenes and one word stands out near the end that I think give it all away.
On the top is a shot of Dr. X handing a gun to a kneeling Mary and below it is a quick flashing pic of a dead Mary with the word 'suicide' done completely different from all the other word flashes throughout. That's the clue referred to in the contest. Mary killed herself. My theory is that she shot herself with a gun that Dr. X gave her and it's indicated by the drum sound at the end of 'Suite Sister Mary'.
Is Queensryche going to change things around, maybe come up with some ulterior reasoning and conveniently forget what's been done for the new CD? I don't think so. It states in the press release that in regards to Mary's killing, "The new album, scheduled for release in 2005, will address that question."--address being the key word. Possibilities exist to expand the details and fill in gaps along the timeline in II.
Queensryche is now on tour performing Operation: Mindcrime complete with classical musicians in addition to an actor and actress/vocalist playing the two major roles. When the final curtain drops, a preview of a song from Mindcrime II entitled The Hostage makes its debut followed by Coming in 2005 as the last message on the screen. We shall see soon enough what the answers are.
If you've made it this far then here's a treat--images of some breasts flashed from 'Video: mindcrime'. But those breasts belong to who....mwahahahahahaha!?
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